Four Social Situations: A Class Activity to Teach Goffman’s Impression Management Through Inductive Learning


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The purpose of this activity is to help students inductively learn Goffman’s concept of impression management through examining how they behave in four social situations: professional settings, with friends, on social media, and important but personal settings. To complete this activity, students will examine their own behavior in each of these settings, such as their word choice, style of dress, posture, and conversational topics. Through a class discussion, students will learn Goffman’s impression management – that we adapt our behavior in different social situations in order to impress the people that we are speaking to.


Resource Type(s):
Class Activity 
Maria D. Duenas 
Date Published:
Subject Area:
Introduction to Sociology/Social Problems 
Class Level:
College 100 
Class Size:

Learning Goals and Assessments:

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Goal 1:
At the end of this activity, students will be able to identify Goffman’s impression management based on common scenarios they would encounter in their everyday lives
Assessment 1:
Students will demonstrate their initial knowledge and comprehension through a class discussion.

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