Humanities vs Social Sciences: Difference and Comparison

Most individuals tend to confuse themselves when distinguishing between the two terms- Humanities and Social Sciences. This is because both these terms are comparable areas of study that cover diverse aspects of human conduct and their association with the community, like law, sociology, economics, politics, psychology, and linguistics.

Key Takeaways

  1. Humanities are academic disciplines exploring human culture, including literature, philosophy, history, and the arts.
  2. Social sciences study human behavior and societies, encompassing sociology, psychology, economics, and political science.
  3. Both areas seek to understand the human experience, but humanities focus on cultural expression and values, while social sciences use empirical methods to analyze societal structures and patterns.

Humanities vs Social Sciences

Humanities and Social Sciences are academic disciplines that study aspects of human society and culture. Humanities study language, literature, philosophy, history, and the arts. The Social Sciences fields study society, human behaviour, and relationships between individuals and groups.

Humanities vs Social sciencies

The study of humanities is believed to be more rational than the study of social sciences. Humanities is a discipline of science that helps tackle the customs, heritage, culture, and values of the community and questions the factors that make an individual human.

On the contrary, in the middle of natural sciences and humanities lies the study of Social science. Social science is a subdivision that includes diverse subjects like psychology, law, administration, political science, economics, history, archaeology, criminology, education, and anthropology.


 

Comparison Table

Parameter of comparisonHumanitiesSocial sciences
ApproachesHumanities are considered to be more of an analytical approach.Social sciences are considered to be more of a scientific approach.
StudyHumanities mainly study the tradition, heritage, and culture of the society.Social sciences mainly study the differences between humanities and pure sciences.
ResearchUnder humanities, an individual doesn’t have to conduct research and surveys since it is a critical approach.Under social sciences, an individual needs to conduct research and surveys since it is a scientific approach.
Marketing strategiesHumanities do not deal with current marketing strategies much.Social sciences mainly deal with current marketing strategies because social sciences are a professional study that surveys market conditions.
New/old approachHumanities are considered an old approach since it was introduced during the ancient Greek civilization era.Social sciences are considered a slightly newer approach since it was introduced during the French and Industrial revolution.

 

What is Humanities?

Humanities refer to a sub-division of science which provides individuals with a clear-cut study of the outlook of human culture and society. The study of humanities began in ancient Greece.

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Under humanities, the study of culture is considered to be an extensive subject of study. Humanities likewise study literature, history, art, archaeology, religion, politics, law, etc.

Other than occupational, educational studies that provide intellectual knowledge is listed under humanities. The subject of Humanities also includes music, theatre, visual arts, etc.

humanities
 

What is Social Sciences?

Social science refers to a branch of science dedicated to the scientific study of an individual’s society and the relationships different individuals have within society. Social science was previously referred to as the study of sociology, which was initially considered the earliest community-based study.

The diverse subjects included in Social sciences like civics, demography, economics, welfare, history, media studies, geography, environmental studies, nursing studies, psychology, and so on are connected to human cultures or societies in either one way or another.

Social scientists use social sciences to create awareness about society and help define science in a modern way. Social sciences differ from humanities as it deals with a more scientific approach.

Social sciences require a lot of research to be done, like taking surveys, and this research is known as social research. Certain subjects are considered under humanities, and social sciences, such as history, law, politics, etc., and many more issues are being created every since.

social sciences

Main Differences Between Humanities and Social Sciences

  1. Humanities are a more subjective approach, mainly based on philosophies and assumptions. Social sciences are an objective approach since it is based on reality and facts of society.
  2. Under humanities, an individual mainly studies human nature and cultures, such as traditions and heritage. Under social sciences, an individual mostly tries to discover the differences between pure sciences and humanities.
  3. Humanists do not need to conduct surveys and research to study humanities since humanities adopt a more analytical approach. For the analysis of social sciences, it is an essential task for social scientists to conduct research and surveys since social sciences focus mainly on observations and hypotheses.
  4. Humanities are not concerned with marketing policies or policy implementations. Social sciences are concerned with marketing strategies and policy implementations since much research is conducted to help the prevailing market conditions.
  5. Humanities are considered to be introduced during the ancient Greek civilization and viewed as an older subject of study than social sciences. Social sciences have new subjects developing every day and are newer methods of approach in dealing with human nature and culture.
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References
  1. https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1177/0263276405057189
  2. https://pdfs.semanticscholar.org/964c/bfd4819feffcd08925b5897a38cfe1eba090.pdf

Last Updated : 13 July, 2023

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11 thoughts on “Humanities vs Social Sciences: Difference and Comparison”

  1. I must respectfully disagree with the statement that humanities don’t deal with current marketing strategies much. There could be more context provided on the relevance of marketing strategies to the humanities.

    Reply
  2. The article provided a comprehensive overview of humanities and social sciences, although the assertion that humanities is an older approach seems somewhat reductive.

    Reply
  3. I appreciate the breakdown of what falls under humanities and social sciences, but I feel there could be more in-depth exploration of the differences between the two disciplines.

    Reply
  4. The distinction between humanities and social sciences is crucial, and this article does an excellent job of highlighting their differences.

    Reply
  5. The comparison between humanities and social sciences was well-presented, but I do think there could be a more balanced argument for the relevance and importance of each discipline.

    Reply
  6. The history of humanities and social sciences is quite intriguing. It’s amazing how far these fields have advanced in understanding and analyzing human behavior.

    Reply
  7. This was a very enlightening article! I always thought humanities and social sciences were basically the same, but now I understand the key differences.

    Reply
  8. I’m not entirely convinced that humanities is more rational than social sciences. The argument for this isn’t very compelling.

    Reply
  9. I found this article to be quite thought-provoking. It’s fascinating to me how the humanities and social sciences differ in their approaches and areas of focus.

    Reply
  10. I must admit, I never really delved into humanities and social sciences, but this article has piqued my interest. The comparison table was particularly informative.

    Reply

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