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S.A. or SA designates a type of public company in certain countries, most of which have a Romance language as its official language and employ civil law. An SA is roughly equivalent to a public limited company in United Kingdom company law and a public company in United States corporate law. Originally, shareholders could be literally anonymous and collect dividends by surrendering coupons attached to their share certificates. Dividends were therefore paid to whoever held the certificate. Share certificates could be transferred privately, and therefore the management of the company would not necessarily know who owned its shares.
Sacred describes something that is dedicated or set apart for the service or worship of a deity; considered worthy of spiritual respect or devotion; or inspires awe or reverence among believers. The property is often ascribed to objects (a “sacred artifact” that is venerated and blessed), or places (“sacred ground”).
French sociologist Émile Durkheim considered the dichotomy between the sacred and the profane to be the central characteristic of religion: “religion is a unified system of beliefs and practices relative to sacred things, that is to say, things set apart and forbidden.”:47 In Durkheim’s theory, the sacred represents the interests of the group, especially unity, which are embodied in sacred group symbols, or totems. The profane, on the other hand, involve mundane individual concerns.
Sadness is an emotional pain associated with, or characterized by, feelings of disadvantage, loss, despair, grief, helplessness, disappointment and sorrow. An individual experiencing sadness may become quiet or lethargic, and withdraw themselves from others. An example of severe sadness is depression, a mood which can be brought on by major depressive disorder or persistent depressive disorder. Crying can be an indication of sadness.
Sadness is one of the “six basic emotions” described by Paul Ekman, along with happiness, anger, surprise, fear, and disgust.
A sailor, seaman, mariner, or seafarer is a person who works aboard a watercraft as part of its crew, and may work in any one of a number of different fields that are related to the operation and maintenance of a ship.
The profession of the sailor is old, and the term sailor has its etymological roots in a time when sailing ships were the main mode of transport at sea, but it now refers to the personnel of all watercraft regardless of the mode of transport, and encompasses people who operate ships professionally, as a sport or recreationally. Be it for a military navy or civilian merchant navy. In a navy, there may be further distinctions: sailor may refer to any member of the navy even if they are based on land; while seaman may refer to a specific enlisted rank.
A salary is a form of payment from an employer to an employee, which may be specified in an employment contract. It is contrasted with piece wages, where each job, hour, or other unit is paid separately, rather than on a periodic basis. From the point of view of running a business, salary can also be viewed as the cost of acquiring and retaining human resources for running operations, and is then termed personnel expense or salary expense. In accounting, salaries are recorded on payroll accounts.
Sales are activities related to selling or the number of goods sold in a given targeted time period. The delivery of a service for a cost is also considered a sale.
The seller, or the provider of the goods or services, completes a sale in response to an acquisition, appropriation, requisition, or a direct interaction with the buyer at the point of sale. There is a passing of title (property or ownership) of the item, and the settlement of a price, in which agreement is reached on a price for which transfer of ownership of the item will occur. The seller, not the purchaser, typically executes the sale and it may be completed prior to the obligation of payment. In the case of indirect interaction, a person who sells goods or service on behalf of the owner is known as a salesman or saleswoman or salesperson, but this often refers to someone selling goods in a store/shop, in which case other terms are also common, including salesclerk, shop assistant, and retail clerk.
In common law countries, sales are governed generally by the common law and commercial codes. In the United States, the laws governing sales of goods are somewhat uniform to the extent that most jurisdictions have adopted Article 2 of the Uniform Commercial Code, albeit with some non-uniform variations.
A sauna (/ˈsɔːnə, saʊ-/; Finnish pronunciation: [ˈsɑunɑ]), or sudatory, is a small room or building designed as a place to experience dry or wet heat sessions, or an establishment with one or more of these facilities. The steam and high heat make the bathers perspire. Infrared therapy is often referred to as a type of sauna, but according to the Finnish sauna organisations, infrared is not a sauna. Tampere, the third-largest city of Finland, has been officially declared the “Sauna Capital of the World”.
In psychology and cognitive science, a schema (plural schemata or schemas) describes a pattern of thought or behavior that organizes categories of information and the relationships among them. It can also be described as a mental structure of preconceived ideas, a framework representing some aspect of the world, or a system of organizing and perceiving new information. Schemata influence attention and the absorption of new knowledge: people are more likely to notice things that fit into their schema, while re-interpreting contradictions to the schema as exceptions or distorting them to fit. Schemata have a tendency to remain unchanged, even in the face of contradictory information. Schemata can help in understanding the world and the rapidly changing environment. People can organize new perceptions into schemata quickly as most situations do not require complex thought when using schema, since automatic thought is all that is required.
People use schemata to organize current knowledge and provide a framework for future understanding. Examples of schemata include academic rubrics, social schemas, stereotypes, social roles, scripts, worldviews, and archetypes. In Piaget’s theory of development, children construct a series of schemata, based on the interactions they experience, to help them understand the world.
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A school is an educational institution designed to provide learning spaces and learning environments for the teaching of students (or “pupils”) under the direction of teachers. Most countries have systems of formal education, which is sometimes compulsory. In these systems, students progress through a series of schools. The names for these schools vary by country (discussed in the Regional section below) but generally include primary school for young children and secondary school for teenagers who have completed primary education. An institution where higher education is taught, is commonly called a university college or university.
School of education
In the United States and Canada, a school of education (or college of education; ed school) is a division within a university that is devoted to scholarship in the field of education, which is an interdisciplinary branch of the social sciences encompassing sociology, psychology, linguistics, economics, political science, public policy, history, and others, all applied to the topic of elementary, secondary, and post-secondary education. The US has 1,206 schools, colleges and departments of education and they exist in 78 per cent of all universities and colleges. According to the National Center for Education Statistics, 176,572 individuals were conferred master’s degrees in education by degree-granting institutions in the United States in 2006–2007. The number of master’s degrees conferred has grown immensely since the 1990s and accounts for one of the discipline areas that awards the highest number of master’s degrees in the United States.
Science (from the Latin word scientia, meaning “knowledge”) is a systematic enterprise that builds and organizes knowledge in the form of testable explanations and predictions about the universe.
Scientific laws or laws of science are statements, based on repeated experiments or observations, that describe or predict a range of natural phenomena. The term law has diverse usage in many cases (approximate, accurate, broad, or narrow) across all fields of natural science (physics, chemistry, astronomy, geoscience, biology). Laws are developed from data and can be further developed through mathematics; in all cases they are directly or indirectly based on empirical evidence. It is generally understood that they implicitly reflect, though they do not explicitly assert, causal relationships fundamental to reality, and are discovered rather than invented.
The scientific method is an empirical method of acquiring knowledge that has characterized the development of science since at least the 17th century. It involves careful observation, applying rigorous skepticism about what is observed, given that cognitive assumptions can distort how one interprets the observation. It involves formulating hypotheses, via induction, based on such observations; experimental and measurement-based testing of deductions drawn from the hypotheses; and refinement (or elimination) of the hypotheses based on the experimental findings. These are principles of the scientific method, as distinguished from a definitive series of steps applicable to all scientific enterprises.
A scientist is a person who conducts scientific research to advance knowledge in an area of interest.
In classical antiquity, there was no real ancient analog of a modern scientist. Instead, philosophers engaged in the philosophical study of nature called natural philosophy, a precursor of natural science. It was not until the 19th century that the term scientist came into regular use after it was coined by the theologian, philosopher, and historian of science William Whewell in 1833.
In modern times, many scientists have advanced degrees in an area of science and pursue careers in various sectors of the economy such as academia, industry, government, and nonprofit environments.
A screenplay writer (also called screenwriter for short), scriptwriter or scenarist, is a writer who practices the craft of screenwriting, writing screenplays on which mass media, such as films, television programs and video games, are based.
Sculpture is the branch of the visual arts that operates in three dimensions. It is one of the plastic arts. Durable sculptural processes originally used carving (the removal of material) and modelling (the addition of material, as clay), in stone, metal, ceramics, wood and other materials but, since Modernism, there has been an almost complete freedom of materials and process. A wide variety of materials may be worked by removal such as carving, assembled by welding or modelling, or moulded or cast.
Secondary education covers two phases on the International Standard Classification of Education scale. Level 2 or lower secondary education (less common junior secondary education) is considered the second and final phase of basic education, and level 3 (upper) secondary education is the stage before tertiary education. Every country aims to provide basic education, but the systems and terminology remain unique to them. Secondary education typically takes place after six years of primary education and is followed by higher education, vocational education or employment. In most countries secondary education is compulsory, at least until the age of 16. Children typically enter the lower secondary phase around age 11. Compulsory education sometimes extends to age 19.
A secondary school describes an institution that provides secondary education and also usually includes the building where this takes place. Some secondary schools provide both lower secondary education (age 12 to 15) and upper secondary education (age 15 to 18) i.e. levels 2 and 3 of the ISCED scale, but these can also be provided in separate schools, as in the American middle and high school system. In the UK, elite public schools typically admit pupils between the ages of 13 and 18. UK state schools accommodate pupils between the ages of 11 to 18.
Secondary schools follow on from primary schools and prepare for vocational or tertiary education. Attendance is usually compulsory for students until age 16. The organisations, buildings, and terminology are more or less unique in each country.
A secretary, administrative professional, or personal assistant is a person whose work consists of supporting management, including executives, using a variety of project management, communication, or organizational skills. However this role should not be confused with the role of an executive secretary, who differs from a personal assistant.
The functions of a personal assistant may be entirely carried out to assist one other employee or may be for the benefit of more than one. In other situations a secretary is an officer of a society or organization who deals with correspondence, admits new members, and organizes official meetings and events.
Security is freedom from, or resilience against, potential harm (or other unwanted coercive change) caused by others. Beneficiaries (technically referents) of security may be of persons and social groups, objects and institutions, ecosystems or any other entity or phenomenon vulnerable to unwanted change.
Security mostly refers to protection from hostile forces, but it has a wide range of other senses: for example, as the absence of harm (e.g. freedom from want); as the presence of an essential good (e.g. food security); as resilience against potential damage or harm (e.g. secure foundations); as secrecy (e.g. a secure telephone line); as containment (e.g. a secure room or cell); and as a state of mind (e.g. emotional security).
The term is also used to refer to acts and systems whose purpose may be to provide security (e.g.: security companies, security forces, security guard, cyber security systems, security cameras, remote guarding).
Security is not only physical but it can also be Virtual.
A security guard (also known as a security inspector, security officer, or protective agent) is a person employed by a government or private party to protect the employing party’s assets (property, people, equipment, money, etc.) from a variety of hazards (such as waste, damaged property, unsafe worker behavior, criminal activity such as theft, etc.) by enforcing preventative measures. Security guards do this by maintaining a high-visibility presence to deter illegal and inappropriate actions, looking (either directly, through patrols, or indirectly, by monitoring alarm systems or video surveillance cameras) for signs of crime or other hazards (such as a fire), taking action to minimize damage (such as warning and escorting trespassers off property), and reporting any incidents to their clients and emergency services (such as the police or paramedics), as appropriate.
Seduction has multiple meanings. Platonically, it can mean “to persuade to disobedience or disloyalty”, or “to lead astray, usually by persuasion or false promises”. In terms of sexual attraction, it can mean to “attract” someone, or to entice someone to sexual intercourse.
Strategies of seduction include conversation and sexual scripts, paralingual features, non-verbal communication, and short-term behavioural strategies. The word seduction stems from Latin and means literally “leading astray.” As a result, the term may have a positive or negative connotation. Famous seducers from history or legend include Lilith, Giacomo Casanova, and the fictional character Don Juan. The emergence of the Internet and technology has supported the availability and the existence of a seduction community, which is based on discourse about seduction. This is predominately by “pickup artists” (PUA). Seduction is also used within marketing to increase compliance and willingness.
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In philosophy of self, self-awareness is the experience of one’s own personality or individuality. It is not to be confused with consciousness in the sense of qualia. While consciousness is being aware of one’s environment and body and lifestyle, self-awareness is the recognition of that awareness. Self-awareness is how an individual consciously knows and understands their own character, feelings, motives, and desires. There are two broad categories of self-awareness: internal self-awareness and external self-awareness.
Self-actualization, in Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, is the highest level of psychological development, where personal potential is fully realized after basic bodily and ego needs have been fulfilled.
Self-actualization was coined by the organismic theorist Kurt Goldstein for the motive to realize one’s full potential: “the tendency to actualize itself as fully as possible is the basic drive … the drive of self-actualization.” Carl Rogers similarly wrote of “the curative force in psychotherapy – man’s tendency to actualize himself, to become his potentialities … to express and activate all the capacities of the organism.”
Self-defense (self-defence in some varieties of English) is a countermeasure that involves defending the health and well-being of oneself from harm. The use of the right of self-defense as a legal justification for the use of force in times of danger is available in many jurisdictions.
Self-realization is an expression used in Western psychology, philosophy, and spirituality; and in Indian religions. In the Western understanding it is the “fulfillment by oneself of the possibilities of one’s character or personality” (see also self-actualization). In the Indian understanding, self-realization is liberating knowledge of the true Self, either as the permanent undying atman, or as the absence (sunyata) of such a permanent Self.
A seminary, school of theology, theological seminary, or divinity school is an educational institution for educating students (sometimes called seminarians) in scripture, theology, generally to prepare them for ordination to serve as clergy, in academics, or in Christian ministry. The English word is taken from the Latin seminarium, translated as seed-bed, an image taken from the Council of Trent document Cum adolescentium aetas which called for the first modern seminaries. In the West, the term now refers to Catholic educational institutes and has widened to include other Christian denominations and American Jewish institutions. Orthodox Theological Seminary, Kottayam (Pazhaya Seminary) is one of the ancient theological learning centers in Asia.
In the United States, the term is currently used for graduate-level theological institutions, but historically it was used for high schools.
A senate is a deliberative assembly, often the upper house or chamber of a bicameral legislature. The name comes from the ancient Roman Senate (Latin: Senatus), so-called as an assembly of the senior (Latin: senex meaning “the elder” or “old man”) and therefore considered wiser and more experienced members of the society or ruling class.
The physical process during which sensory systems respond to stimuli and provide data for perception is called sensation. During sensation, sense organs engage in stimulus collection and transduction. Sensation is often differentiated from the related and dependent concept of perception, which processes and integrates sensory information in order to give meaning to and understand detected stimuli, giving rise to subjective perceptual experience, or qualia. Sensation and perception are central to and precede almost all aspects of cognition, behavior and thought.
Sense of balance
The sense of balance or equilibrioception is the perception of balance and spatial orientation. It helps prevent humans and nonhuman animals from falling over when standing or moving. Equilibrioception is the result of a number of sensory systems working together: the eyes (visual system), the inner ears (vestibular system), and the body’s sense of where it is in space (proprioception) ideally need to be intact.
Sensory nervous system
The sensory nervous system is a part of the nervous system responsible for processing sensory information. A sensory system consists of sensory neurons (including the sensory receptor cells), neural pathways, and parts of the brain involved in sensory perception. Commonly recognized sensory systems are those for vision, hearing, touch, taste, smell, and balance. In short, senses are transducers from the physical world to the realm of the mind where we interpret the information, creating our perception of the world around us.
A service is a transaction in which no physical goods are transferred from the seller to the buyer. The benefits of such a service are held to be demonstrated by the buyer’s willingness to make the exchange. Public services are those that society (nation state, fiscal union or region) as a whole pays for. Using resources, skill, ingenuity, and experience, service providers benefit service consumers. Service is intangible in nature.
Sex – Human sexual activity
Human sexual activity, human sexual practice or human sexual behaviour is the manner in which humans experience and express their sexuality. People engage in a variety of sexual acts, ranging from activities done alone (e.g., masturbation) to acts with another person (e.g., sexual intercourse, non-penetrative sex, oral sex, etc.) in varying patterns of frequency, for a wide variety of reasons. Sexual activity usually results in sexual arousal and physiological changes in the aroused person, some of which are pronounced while others are more subtle.
Sexual arousal (also sexual excitement) is typically the arousal of sexual desire during or in anticipation of sexual activity. A number of physiological responses occur in the body and mind as preparation for sexual intercourse and continue during it. Male arousal will lead to an erection, and in female arousal the body’s response is engorged sexual tissues such as nipples, vulva, clitoris, vaginal walls, and vaginal lubrication. Mental stimuli and physical stimuli such as touch, and the internal fluctuation of hormones, can influence sexual arousal.
Sexual attraction is attraction on the basis of sexual desire or the quality of arousing such interest. Sexual attractiveness or sex appeal is an individual’s ability to attract the sexual or erotic interests of other people, and is a factor in sexual selection or mate choice. The attraction can be to the physical or other qualities or traits of a person, or to such qualities in the context where they appear. The attraction may be to a person’s aesthetics or movements or to their voice or smell, besides other factors. The attraction may be enhanced by a person’s adornments, clothing, perfume or style. It can be influenced by individual genetic, psychological, or cultural factors, or to other, more amorphous qualities. Sexual attraction is also a response to another person that depends on a combination of the person possessing the traits and on the criteria of the person who is attracted.
Sexual desire is a motivational state and an interest in sexual objects or activities, or as a wish, or drive to seek out sexual objects or to engage in sexual activities. Synonyms for sexual desire are libido, sexual attraction and lust. Sexual desire is an aspect of a person’s sexuality, which varies significantly from one person to another, and also varies depending on circumstances at a particular time. Not every person experiences sexual desire; those who do not experience it may be labelled asexual.
A sexual fantasy or erotic fantasy is a mental image or pattern of thought that stirs a person’s sexuality and can create or enhance sexual arousal. A sexual fantasy can be created by the person’s imagination or memory, and may be triggered autonomously or by external stimulation such as erotic literature or pornography, a physical object, or sexual attraction to another person. Anything that may give rise to a sexual arousal may also produce a sexual fantasy, and sexual arousal may in turn give rise to fantasies.
Shipbuilding is the construction of ships and other floating vessels. It normally takes place in a specialized facility known as a shipyard. Shipbuilders, also called shipwrights, follow a specialized occupation that traces its roots to before recorded history.
Shipbuilding and ship repairs, both commercial and military, are referred to as “naval engineering”. The construction of boats is a similar activity called boat building.
The dismantling of ships is called ship breaking.
Shoemaking is the process of making footwear.
Originally, shoes were made one at a time by hand, often by groups of shoemakers, or cobblers (also known as cordwainers). In the 18th century, dozens or even hundreds of masters, journeymen and apprentices (both men and women) would work together in a shop, dividing up the work into individual tasks. A customer could come into a shop, be individually measured, and return to pick up their new shoes in as little as a day. Everyone needed shoes, and the median price for a pair was about one day’s wages for an average journeyman.
Shopping is an activity in which a customer browses the available goods or services presented by one or more retailers with the potential intent to purchase a suitable selection of them. A typology of shopper types has been developed by scholars which identifies one group of shoppers as recreational shoppers, that is, those who enjoy shopping and view it as a leisure activity.
Shyness (also called diffidence) is the feeling of apprehension, lack of comfort, or awkwardness especially when a person is around other people. This commonly occurs in new situations or with unfamiliar people. Shyness can be a characteristic of people who have low self-esteem. Stronger forms of shyness are usually referred to as social anxiety or social phobia. The primary defining characteristic of shyness is a largely ego-driven fear of what other people will think of a person’s behavior. This results in a person becoming scared of doing or saying what they want to out of fear of negative reactions, being laughed at, humiliated or patronized, criticized or rejected. A shy person may simply opt to avoid social situations instead.
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Signal processing is an electrical engineering subfield that focuses on analysing, modifying, and synthesizing signals such as sound, images, and scientific measurements. Signal processing techniques can be used to improve transmission, storage efficiency and subjective quality and to also emphasize or detect components of interest in a measured signal.
Singing is the act of producing musical sounds with the voice. A person who sings is called a singer or vocalist (in jazz and popular music). Singers perform music (arias, recitatives, songs, etc.) that can be sung with or without accompaniment by musical instruments. Singing is often done in an ensemble of musicians, such as a choir of singers or a band of instrumentalists. Singers may perform as soloists or accompanied by anything from a single instrument (as in art song or some jazz styles) up to a symphony orchestra or big band. Different singing styles include art music such as opera and Chinese opera, Indian music and religious music styles such as gospel, traditional music styles, world music, jazz, blues, ghazal and popular music styles such as pop, rock and electronic dance music.
Singing can be formal or informal, arranged, or improvised. It may be done as a form of religious devotion, as a hobby, as a source of pleasure, comfort, or ritual as part of music education or as a profession. Excellence in singing requires time, dedication, instruction, and regular practice. If practice is done regularly then the sounds can become clearer and stronger. Professional singers usually build their careers around one specific musical genre, such as classical or rock, although there are singers with crossover success (singing in more than one genre). Professional singers usually take voice training provided by voice teachers or vocal coaches throughout their careers.
A sketch (ultimately from Greek σχέδιος – schedios, “done extempore”) is a rapidly executed freehand drawing that is not usually intended as a finished work. A sketch may serve a number of purposes: it might record something that the artist sees, it might record or develop an idea for later use or it might be used as a quick way of graphically demonstrating an image, idea or principle.
Sketches can be made in any drawing medium. The term is most often applied to graphic work executed in a dry medium such as silverpoint, graphite, pencil, charcoal or pastel. It may also apply to drawings executed in pen and ink, digital input such as a digital pen, ballpoint pen, marker pen, water colour and oil paint. The latter two are generally referred to as “water colour sketches” and “oil sketches”. A sculptor might model three-dimensional sketches in clay, plasticine or wax.
Skiing is a means of transport using skis to glide on snow. Variations of purpose include basic transport, a recreational activity, or a competitive winter sport. Many types of competitive skiing events are recognized by the International Olympic Committee (IOC), and the International Ski Federation (FIS).
A skill is the learned ability to perform an action with determined results with good execution often within a given amount of time, energy, or both. Skills can often be divided into domain-general and domain-specific skills. For example, in the domain of work, some general skills would include time management, teamwork and leadership, self-motivation and others, whereas domain-specific skills would be used only for a certain job. Skill usually requires certain environmental stimuli and situations to assess the level of skill being shown and used.
A skill may be called an art when it represents a body of knowledge or branch of learning, as in the art of medicine or the art of war. Although the arts are also skills, there are many skills that form an art but have no connection to the fine arts. A practice is when the learned skill is put into practice. An art or skill may be the basis for a profession, trade, or craft.
People need a broad range of skills to contribute to the modern economy. A joint ASTD and U.S. Department of Labor study showed that through technology, the workplace is changing, and identified 16 basic skills that employees must have to be able to change with it. Three broad categories of skills are suggested and these are technical, human, and conceptual. The first two can be substituted with hard and soft skills, respectively.
A skilled worker is any worker who has special skill, training, knowledge which they can then apply to their work. A skilled worker may have attended a college, university or technical school. Alternatively, a skilled worker may have learned their skills on the job. These skills often lead to better outcomes economically. The definition of a skilled worker has seen change throughout the 20th century largely due to the industrial impact of the Great Depression and World War II. Further changes in globalisation have seen this definition shift further in Western Countries, with many jobs moving from manufacturing based sectors to more advanced technical and service based roles. Examples of university educated skilled labor include engineers, scientists, doctors and teachers, while examples of vocationally educated workers include crane operators, CDL truck drivers, machinist, drafters, plumbers, craftsmen, cooks and accountants.
Skin is the layer of usually soft, flexible outer tissue covering the body of a vertebrate animal, with three main functions: protection, regulation, and sensation.
Other animal coverings, such as the arthropod exoskeleton, have different developmental origin, structure and chemical composition. The adjective cutaneous means “of the skin” (from Latin cutis ‘skin’). In mammals, the skin is an organ of the integumentary system made up of multiple layers of ectodermal tissue, and guards the underlying muscles, bones, ligaments and internal organs. Skin of a different nature exists in amphibians, reptiles, and birds. All mammals have some hair on their skin, even marine mammals like whales, dolphins, and porpoises which appear to be hairless. The skin interfaces with the environment and is the first line of defense from external factors. For example, the skin plays a key role in protecting the body against pathogens and excessive water loss. Its other functions are insulation, temperature regulation, sensation, and the production of vitamin D folates. Severely damaged skin may heal by forming scar tissue. This is sometimes discoloured and depigmented. The thickness of skin also varies from location to location on an organism. In humans for example, the skin located under the eyes and around the eyelids is the thinnest skin in the body at 0.5 mm thick, and is one of the first areas to show signs of aging such as “crows feet” and wrinkles. The skin on the palms and the soles of the feet is 4 mm thick and is the thickest skin on the body. The speed and quality of wound healing in skin is promoted by the reception of estrogen.
Sleep is a naturally recurring state of mind and body, characterized by altered consciousness, relatively inhibited sensory activity, reduced muscle activity and inhibition of nearly all voluntary muscles during rapid eye movement (REM) sleep, and reduced interactions with surroundings. It is distinguished from wakefulness by a decreased ability to react to stimuli, but more reactive than a coma or disorders of consciousness, with sleep displaying very different and active brain patterns.
A smile is formed primarily by flexing the muscles at the sides of the mouth. Some smiles include a contraction of the muscles at the corner of the eyes, an action known as a Duchenne smile. Among humans, smiling is an expression denoting pleasure, sociability, happiness, joy or amusement. It is distinct from a similar but usually involuntary expression of anxiety known as a grimace. Although cross-cultural studies have shown that smiling is a means of communication throughout the world, there are large differences among different cultures, religions and societies, with some using smiles to convey confusion or embarrassment.
Social cognition is a sub-topic of various branches of psychology that focuses on how people process, store, and apply information about other people and social situations. It focuses on the role that cognitive processes play in social interactions.
More technically, social cognition refers to how people deal with conspecifics (members of the same species) or even across species (such as pet) information, include four stages: encoding, storage, retrieval, and processing. In the area of social psychology, social cognition refers to a specific approach in which these processes are studied according to the methods of cognitive psychology and information processing theory. According to this view, social cognition is a level of analysis that aims to understand social psychological phenomena by investigating the cognitive processes that underlie them. The major concerns of the approach are the processes involved in the perception, judgment, and memory of social stimuli; the effects of social and affective factors on information processing; and the behavioral and interpersonal consequences of cognitive processes. This level of analysis may be applied to any content area within social psychology, including research on intrapersonal, interpersonal, intragroup, and intergroup processes.
The term social cognition has been used in multiple areas in psychology and cognitive neuroscience, most often to refer to various social abilities disrupted in autism, schizophrenia and psychopathy. In cognitive neuroscience the biological basis of social cognition is investigated. Developmental psychologists study the development of social cognition abilities.
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Social control is a concept within the disciplines of the social sciences. Social control is described as a certain set of rules and standards in society that keep individuals bound to conventional standards as well as to the use of formalized mechanisms. The Disciplinary model was the forerunner to the control model.
Social engineering (political science)
Social engineering is a discipline in social science that refers to efforts to influence particular attitudes and social behaviors on a large scale, whether by governments, media, academia or private groups in order to produce desired characteristics in a target population. Social engineering can also be understood philosophically as a deterministic phenomenon where the intentions and goals of the architects of the new social construct are realized.
Social engineers use the scientific method to analyze and understand social systems in order to design the appropriate methods to achieve the desired results in the human subjects.
Social geography is the branch of human geography that is most closely related to social theory in general and sociology in particular, dealing with the relation of social phenomena and its spatial components. Though the term itself has a tradition of more than 100 years, there is no consensus on its explicit content. In 1968, Anne Buttimer noted that “[w]ith some notable exceptions, (…) social geography can be considered a field created and cultivated by a number of individual scholars rather than an academic tradition built up within particular schools”. Since then, despite some calls for convergence centred on the structure and agency debate, its methodological, theoretical and topical diversity has spread even more, leading to numerous definitions of social geography and, therefore, contemporary scholars of the discipline identifying a great variety of different social geographies. However, as Benno Werlen remarked, these different perceptions are nothing else than different answers to the same two (sets of) questions, which refer to the spatial constitution of society on the one hand, and to the spatial expression of social processes on the other.
In the social sciences, a social group can be defined as two or more people who interact with one another, share similar characteristics, and collectively have a sense of unity. Other theorists disagree however, and are wary of definitions which stress the importance of interdependence or objective similarity. Instead, researchers within the social identity tradition generally define it as “a group is defined in terms of those who identify themselves as members of the group.” Regardless, social groups come in a myriad of sizes and varieties. For example, a society can be viewed as a large social group.
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Social influence comprises the ways in which individuals change their behavior to meet the demands of a social environment. It takes many forms and can be seen in conformity, socialization, peer pressure, obedience, leadership, persuasion, sales, and marketing. Typically social influence results from a specific action, command, or request, but people also alter their attitudes and behaviors in response to what they perceive others might do or think. In 1958, Harvard psychologist Herbert Kelman identified three broad varieties of social influence.
Compliance is when people appear to agree with others but actually keep their dissenting opinions private.
Identification is when people are influenced by someone who is liked and respected, such as a famous celebrity.
Internalization is when people accept a belief or behavior and agree both publicly and privately.
Social integration is the process during which newcomers or minorities are incorporated into the social structure of the host society.
Social integration, together with economic integration and identity integration, are three main dimensions of a newcomers’ experiences in the society that is receiving them. A higher extent of social integration contributes to a closer social distance between groups and more consistent values and practices. Bringing together various ethnic groups irrespective of language, caste, creed, etc., without losing one’s identity. It gives access to all areas of community life and eliminates segregation.
In a broader view, social integration is a dynamic and structured process in which all members participate in dialogue to achieve and maintain peaceful social relations. Social integration does not mean forced assimilation. Social integration is focused on the need to move toward a safe, stable and just society by mending conditions of social disintegration, social exclusion, social fragmentation, exclusion and polarization, and by expanding and strengthening conditions of social integration towards peaceful social relations of coexistence, collaboration and cohesion.
Social media are interactive technologies that allow the creation or sharing/exchange of information, ideas, career interests, and other forms of expression via virtual communities and networks. While challenges to the definition of social media arise due to the broad variety of stand-alone and built-in social-media services currently available, there are some common features:
Social media are interactive Web 2.0 Internet-based applications.
User-generated content—such as text posts or comments, digital photos or videos, and data generated through all online interactions—is the lifeblood of social media.
Users create service-specific profiles for the website or app that are designed and maintained by the social-media organization.
Social media helps the development of online social networks by connecting a user’s profile with those of other individuals or groups.
Users usually access social media services via web-based apps on desktops and laptops, or download services that offer social media functionality to their mobile devices (e.g., smartphones and tablets). As users engage with these electronic services, they create highly interactive platforms through which individuals, communities, and organizations can share, co-create, discuss, participate, and modify user-generated content or self-curated content posted online. Additionally, social media are used to document memories; learn about and explore things; advertise oneself; and form friendships along with the growth of ideas from the creation of blogs, podcasts, videos, and gaming sites. This changing relationship between human and technology is the focus of the emerging field of technoself studies.
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A social network is a social structure made up of a set of social actors (such as individuals or organizations), sets of dyadic ties, and other social interactions between actors. The social network perspective provides a set of methods for analyzing the structure of whole social entities as well as a variety of theories explaining the patterns observed in these structures. The study of these structures uses social network analysis to identify local and global patterns, locate influential entities, and examine network dynamics.
Social networks and the analysis of them is an inherently interdisciplinary academic field which emerged from social psychology, sociology, statistics, and graph theory. Georg Simmel authored early structural theories in sociology emphasizing the dynamics of triads and “web of group affiliations”. Jacob Moreno is credited with developing the first sociograms in the 1930s to study interpersonal relationships. These approaches were mathematically formalized in the 1950s and theories and methods of social networks became pervasive in the social and behavioral sciences by the 1980s. Social network analysis is now one of the major paradigms in contemporary sociology, and is also employed in a number of other social and formal sciences. Together with other complex networks, it forms part of the nascent field of network science.
Social norms are regarded as collective representations of acceptable group conduct as well as individual perceptions of particular group conduct. They can be viewed as cultural products (including values, customs, and traditions) which represent individuals’ basic knowledge of what others do and think that they should do. From a sociological perspective, social norms are informal understandings that govern the behavior of members of a society. Social psychology recognizes smaller group units (such as a team or an office) may also endorse norms separately or in addition to cultural or societal expectations.
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Social psychology is the scientific study of how the thoughts, feelings, and behaviors of individuals are influenced by the actual, imagined, and implied presence of others. In this definition, ‘scientific’ refers to empirical investigation using the scientific method, while ‘imagined’ and ‘implied presences’ refer to the internalized social norms that humans are influenced by even when alone.
Social psychologists typically explain human behavior as being a result of the relationship between mental state and social situation, studying the conditions under which thoughts, feelings, and behaviors occur and how these variables influence social interactions.
Social psychology has bridged the gap between psychology and sociology to an extent, but a divide still exists between the two fields. Nevertheless, sociological approaches to psychology remain an important counterpart to conventional psychological research. In addition to the split between psychology and sociology, there is difference in emphasis between American and European social psychologists, as the former traditionally have focused more on the individual, whereas the latter have generally paid more attention to group-level phenomena.
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In social science, a social relation or social interaction is any relationship between two or more individuals. Social relations derived from individual agency form the basis of social structure and the basic object for analysis by social scientists. Fundamental inquiries into the nature of social relations feature in the work of sociologists such as Max Weber in his theory of social action. Social relationships are composed of both positive (affiliative) and negative (agonistic) interactions, representing opposing effects
Social relationships are a special case of social relations that can exist without any communication taking place between the actors involved. Categorizing social interactions enables observational and other social research, such as Gemeinschaft and Gesellschaft (lit. ‘community and society’), collective consciousness, etc. However, different schools and theories of sociology and other social sciences dispute the methods used for such investigations.
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Social science is the branch of science devoted to the study of societies and the relationships among individuals within those societies. The term was formerly used to refer to the field of sociology, the original “science of society”, established in the century. In addition to sociology, it now encompasses a wide array of academic disciplines, including anthropology, archaeology, economics, human geography, linguistics,mathematics , management science, media studies, political science, psychology, and history. (For a more detailed list of sub-disciplines within the social sciences see: Outline of social science.)
A social skill is any competence facilitating interaction and communication with others where social rules and relations are created, communicated, and changed in verbal and nonverbal ways. The process of learning these skills is called socialization. Lack of such skills can cause social awkwardness.
Interpersonal skills are the acts a person uses to interact with, and relate to, others; they are related to the categories of dominance vs. submission, love vs. hate, affiliation vs. aggression, and control vs. autonomy (Leary, 1957). Positive interpersonal skills include persuasion, active listening, delegation, and stewardship, among others. Social psychology is the academic discipline that does research related to social skills and studies how skills are learned by an individual through changes in attitude, thinking, and behavior.
Social status is the level of social value a person is considered to hold. More specifically, it refers to the relative level of respect, honor, assumed competence, and deference accorded to people, groups, and organizations in a society. Status is based in widely shared beliefs about who members of a society think holds comparatively more or less social value, in other words, who they believe is better in terms of competence or moral traits. Status is determined by the possession of various characteristics culturally believed to indicate superiority or inferiority (e.g., confident manner of speech or race). As such, people use status hierarchies to allocate resources, leadership positions, and other forms of power. In doing so, these shared cultural beliefs make unequal distributions of resources and power appear natural and fair, supporting systems of social stratification. Status hierarchies appear to be universal across human societies, affording valued benefits to those who occupy the higher rungs, such as better health, social approval, resources, influence, and freedom.
In the social sciences, social structure is the patterned social arrangements in society that are both emergent from and determinant of the actions of individuals. Likewise, society is believed to be grouped into structurally-related groups or sets of roles, with different functions, meanings, or purposes. Examples of social structure include family, religion, law, economy, and class. It contrasts with “social system”, which refers to the parent structure in which these various structures are embedded. Thus, social structures significantly influence larger systems, such as economic systems, legal systems, political systems, cultural systems, etc. Social structure can also be said to be the framework upon which a society is established. It determines the Norms and patterns of relations between the various institutions of the society.
In sociology, social system is the patterned network of relationships constituting a coherent whole that exist between individuals, groups, and institutions. It is the formal structure of role and status that can form in a small, stable group. An individual may belong to multiple social systems at once; examples of social systems include nuclear family units, communities , cities, nations, college campuses , corporations, and industries. The organization and definition of groups within a social system depend on various shared properties such as location, socioeconomic status, race, religion, societal function, or other distinguishable features.
Social work is an academic discipline and practice-based profession that concerns itself with individuals, families, groups, communities and society as a whole in an effort to meet basic needs and enhance social functioning, self-determination, collective responsibility, and overall well-being. Social functioning is defined as the ability of an individual to perform their social roles within their own self, their immediate social environment, and the society at large. Social work applies social sciences, such as sociology, psychology, political science, public health, community development, law, and economics, to engage with client systems, conduct assessments, and develop interventions to solve social problems, personal problems, and bring about social change. Social work practice is often divided into micro-work, which involves working directly with individuals or small groups; and macro-work, which involves working with communities, and fostering change on a larger scale through social policy.
Sociality is the degree to which individuals in an animal population tend to associate in social groups (gregariousness) and form cooperative societies.
Sociality is a survival response to evolutionary pressures. For example, when a mother wasp stays near her larvae in the nest, parasites are less likely to eat the larvae. Biologists suspect that pressures from parasites and other predators selected this behavior in wasps of the family Vespidae.
This wasp behaviour evidences the most fundamental characteristic of animal sociality: parental investment. Parental investment is any expenditure of resources (time, energy, social capital) to benefit one’s offspring. Parental investment detracts from a parent’s capacity to invest in future reproduction and aid to kin (including other offspring). An animal that cares for its young but shows no other sociality traits is said to be subsocial.
An animal that exhibits a high degree of sociality is called a social animal. The highest degree of sociality recognized by sociobiologists is eusociality. A eusocial taxon is one that exhibits overlapping adult generations, reproductive division of labor, cooperative care of young, and—in the most refined cases—a biological caste system.
In sociology, socialization is the process of internalizing the norms and ideologies of society. Socialization encompasses both learning and teaching and is thus “the means by which social and cultural continuity are attained”.
Socialization is strongly connected to developmental psychology. Humans need social experiences to learn their culture and to survive.
Socialization essentially represents the whole process of learning throughout the life course and is a central influence on the behavior, beliefs, and actions of adults as well as of children.
Socialization may lead to desirable outcomes—sometimes labeled “moral”—as regards the society where it occurs. Individual views are influenced by the society’s consensus and usually tend toward what that society finds acceptable or “normal”. Socialization provides only a partial explanation for human beliefs and behaviors, maintaining that agents are not blank slates predetermined by their environment; scientific research provides evidence that people are shaped by both social influences and genes.
Genetic studies have shown that a person’s environment interacts with their genotype to influence behavioral outcomes.
A society is a group of individuals involved in persistent social interaction, or a large social group sharing the same spatial or social territory, typically subject to the same political authority and dominant cultural expectations. Societies are characterized by patterns of relationships (social relations) between individuals who share a distinctive culture and institutions; a given society may be described as the sum total of such relationships among its constituent of members. In the social sciences, a larger society often exhibits stratification or dominance patterns in subgroups.
Sociology is the study of society, human social behaviour, patterns of social and relationships, social interaction, and culture that surrounds everyday life. It is a social science that uses various methods of empirical investigation and critical analysis:3–5 to develop a body of knowledge about social order and social change.:32–40 Sociology can also be defined as the general science of society. While some sociologists conduct research that may be applied directly to social policy and welfare, others focus primarily on refining the theoretical understanding of social processes. Subject matter can range from micro-level analyses of society (i.e., of individual interaction and agency) to macro-level analyses (i.e., of systems and the social structure).
Traditional focuses of sociology include social stratification, social class, social mobility, religion, secularization, law, sexuality, gender, and deviance. As all spheres of human activity are affected by the interplay between social structure and individual agency, sociology has gradually expanded its focus to other subjects and institutions, such as health and the institution of medicine; economy; military; punishment and systems of control; the Internet; education; social capital; and the role of social activity in the development of scientific knowledge.
The range of social scientific methods has also expanded, as social researchers draw upon a variety of qualitative and quantitative techniques. The linguistic and cultural turns of the mid-20th century, especially, have led to increasingly interpretative, hermeneutic, and philosophic approaches towards the analysis of society. Conversely, the turn of the 21st century has seen the rise of new analytically, mathematically, and computationally rigorous techniques, such as agent-based modelling and social network analysis.
Social research has influence throughout various industries and sectors of life, such as among politicians, policy makers, and legislators; educators; planners; administrators; developers; business magnates and managers; social workers; non-governmental organizations; and non-profit organizations, as well as individuals interested in resolving social issues in general. As such, there is often a great deal of crossover between social research, market research, and other statistical fields.
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A soldier is one who fights as part of a military. A soldier can be a conscripted or volunteer enlisted person, a non-commissioned officer, or an officer. In other words, soldiers are military personnel that participate in ground, sea, or air forces, commonly known as armies, navies, and air forces, respectively.
Solidarity is an awareness of shared interests, objectives, standards, and sympathies creating a psychological sense of unity of groups or classes. It refers to the ties in a society that bind people together as one. The term is generally employed in sociology and the other social sciences as well as in philosophy and bioethics. It is also a significant concept in Catholic social teaching; therefore it is a core concept in Christian democratic political ideology.
The somatosensory system is a part of the sensory nervous system. The somatosensory system is a complex system of sensory neurons and neural pathways that responds to changes at the surface or inside the body. The axons (as afferent nerve fibers) of sensory neurons connect with, or respond to, various receptor cells. These sensory receptor cells are activated by different stimuli such as heat and nociception, giving a functional name to the responding sensory neuron, such as a thermoreceptor which carries information about temperature changes. Other types include mechanoreceptors, chemoreceptors, and nociceptors which send signals along a sensory nerve to the spinal cord where they may be processed by other sensory neurons and then relayed to the brain for further processing. Sensory receptors are found all over the body including the skin, epithelial tissues, muscles, bones and joints, internal organs, and the cardiovascular system.
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A songwriter is a musician who professionally composes musical compositions and writes lyrics for songs. A songwriter can also be called a composer, although the latter term tends to be used mainly for individuals from the classical music genre and film scoring, but is also associated writing and composing the original musical composition or musical bed. A songwriter who mainly writes the lyrics for a song is referred to as a lyricist. The pressure from the music industry to produce popular hits means that song writing is often an activity for which the tasks are distributed between a number of people. For example, a songwriter who excels at writing lyrics might be paired with a songwriter with the task of creating original melodies. Pop songs may be composed by group members from the band or by staff writers – songwriters directly employed by music publishers. Some songwriters serve as their own music publishers, while others have outside publishers.
In many religious, philosophical, and mythological traditions, the soul is the incorporeal essence of a living being. Soul or psyche (Ancient Greek: ψυχή psykhḗ, of ψύχειν psýkhein, “to breathe”, cf.Latin ‘anima’) comprises the mental abilities of a living being: reason, character, feeling, consciousness, qualia, memory, perception, thinking, etc. Depending on the philosophical system, a soul can either be mortal or immortal.
Greek philosophers, such as Socrates, Plato, and Aristotle, understood that the soul (ψυχή psūchê) must have a logical faculty, the exercise of which was the most divine of human actions. At his defense trial, Socrates even summarized his teachings as nothing other than an exhortation for his fellow Athenians to excel in matters of the psyche since all bodily goods are dependent on such excellence (Apology 30a–b).
A spa is a location where mineral-rich spring water (and sometimes seawater) is used to give medicinal baths. Spa towns or spa resorts (including hot springs resorts) typically offer various health treatments, which are also known as balneotherapy. The belief in the curative powers of mineral waters goes back to prehistoric times. Such practices have been popular worldwide, but are especially widespread in Europe and Japan. Day spas are also quite popular and offer various personal care treatments.
Space is the boundless three-dimensional extent in which objects and events have relative position and direction. Physical space is often conceived in three linear dimensions, although modern physicists usually consider it, with time, to be part of a boundless four-dimensional continuum known as spacetime. The concept of space is considered to be of fundamental importance to an understanding of the physical universe. However, disagreement continues between philosophers over whether it is itself an entity, a relationship between entities, or part of a conceptual framework.
Special forces and special operations forces (SOF) are military units trained to conduct special operations. NATO has defined special operations as “military activities conducted by specially designated, organized, trained, and equipped forces, manned with selected personnel, using unconventional tactics, techniques, and modes of employment”.
Special forces emerged in the early 20th century, with a significant growth in the field during the Second World War, when “every major army involved in the fighting” created formations devoted to special operations behind enemy lines. Depending on the country, special forces may perform functions including airborne operations, counter-insurgency, counter-terrorism, foreign internal defense, covert ops, direct action, hostage rescue, high-value targets/manhunt, intelligence operations, mobility operations, and unconventional warfare.
In Russian-speaking countries, special forces of any country are typically called spetsnaz, an acronym for “special purpose”. In the United States, the term special forces often refers specifically to the U.S. Army’s Special Forces, while the term special operations forces (SOF) is used more broadly for these types of units.
Speech–language pathology (or speech and language pathology) is a field of expertise practiced by a clinician known as a speech–language pathologist (SLP) or a speech and language therapist, both of whom may be known by the shortened description, speech therapist. Speech–language pathology is considered a “related health profession” or “allied health profession” along with audiology, optometry, occupational therapy, rehabilitation psychology, physical therapy, behavior analysis and others.
Spintronics (a portmanteau meaning spin transport electronics), also known as spin electronics, is the study of the intrinsic spin of the electron and its associated magnetic moment, in addition to its fundamental electronic charge, in solid-state devices. The field of spintronics concerns spin-charge coupling in metallic systems; the analogous effects in insulators fall into the field of multiferroics.
Spintronics fundamentally differs from traditional electronics in that, in addition to charge state, electron spins are exploited as a further degree of freedom, with implications in the efficiency of data storage and transfer. Spintronic systems are most often realised in dilute magnetic semiconductors (DMS) and Heusler alloys and are of particular interest in the field of quantum computing and neuromorphic computing.
The meaning of spirituality has developed and expanded over time, and various connotations can be found alongside each other. Traditionally, spirituality referred to a religious process of re-formation which “aims to recover the original shape of man”, oriented at “the image of God” as exemplified by the founders and sacred texts of the religions of the world. The term was used within early Christianity to refer to a life oriented toward the Holy Spirit and broadened during the Late Middle Ages to include mental aspects of life. In modern times, the term both spread to other religious traditions and broadened to refer to a wider range of experience, including a range of esoteric traditions and religious traditions. Modern usages tend to refer to a subjective experience of a sacred dimension and the “deepest values and meanings by which people live”, often in a context separate from organized religious institutions, such as a belief in a supernatural (beyond the known and observable) realm, personal growth, a quest for an ultimate or sacred meaning, religious experience, or an encounter with one’s own “inner dimension”.
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A spokesperson, spokesman, or spokeswoman, is someone engaged or elected to speak on behalf of others.
Duties and function
In the present media-sensitive world, many organizations are increasingly likely to employ professionals who have received formal training in journalism, communications, public relations and public affairs in this role in order to ensure that public announcements are made in the most appropriate fashion and through the most appropriate channels to maximize the impact of favorable messages, and to minimize the impact of unfavorable messages. Celebrity spokespeople such as popular local and national sports stars (such as Michael Jordan or Bob Uecker) or television and film stars (such as Beyoncé or Michael J. Fox) are often chosen as spokespeople for commercial advertising. As of August 2017, Kayleigh McEnany and Michael Tyler served as spokespeople of the RNC and DNC, respectively.
Sport includes all forms of competitivephysical activity or games which, through casual or organised participation, at least in part aim to use, maintain or improve physical ability and skills while providing enjoyment to participants, and in some cases, entertainment for spectators. Hundreds of sports exist, from those between single contestants, through to those with hundreds of simultaneous participants, either in teams or competing as individuals.
Sport of athletics
Athletics is a group of sporting events that involves competitive running, jumping, throwing, and walking. The most common types of athletics competitions are track and field, road running, cross country running, and racewalking.
The results of racing events are decided by finishing position (or time, where measured), while the jumps and throws are won by the athlete that achieves the highest or furthest measurement from a series of attempts. The simplicity of the competitions, and the lack of a need for expensive equipment, makes athletics one of the most common types of sports in the world. Athletics is mostly an individual sport, with the exception of relay races and competitions which combine athletes’ performances for a team score, such as cross country.
Staging (theatre, film, television)
Staging is the process of selecting, designing, adapting to, or modifying the performance space for a play or film. This includes the use or absence of stagecraft elements as well as the structure of the stage and its components.
Staging is also used to mean the result of this process, in other words the spectacle that a play presents in performance, its visual detail. This can include such things as positions of actors on stage (often referred to as blocking), their gestures and movements (also called stage business), the scenic background, the props and costumes, lighting, and sound effects. Besides costume, any physical object that appears in a play has the potential to become an important dramatic symbol. The first thing that the audience of a play sees is the stage set, the physical objects that suggest the world of the play. The stage set is usually indicated by the playwright, but the degree of detail and specificity of this rendering vary from one playwright to another and from one literary period to another. In film, staging is generally called set dressing.
The starost or starosta (Cyrillic: старост/а, Latin: capitaneus, German: Starost, Hauptmann) is a Slavic term denoting a community elder whose role was to administer the assets of a clan or family estates. The Slavic root of starost translates as “senior”. Since the Middle Ages, it has meant an official in a leadership position in a range of civic and social contexts throughout the Slavic world. In terms of a municipality, a starosta was historically a senior royal administrative official, equivalent to the County Sheriff or the outdated Seneschal, and analogous to a gubernator. In Poland, a starosta would administer crown territory or a delineated district called a starostwo.
In the early Middle Ages, the starosta could head a settled urban or rural community or other communities, such as a church starosta, or an artel starosta, etc. The starosta also functioned as the master of ceremonies in traditional Carpatho-Rusyn, Ukrainian, and Polish weddings, similar to the stari svat (стари сват) at Serbian weddings.
A state is a polity under a system of governance with a monopoly on force. There is no undisputed definition of a state. A widely used definition from the German sociologist Max Weber is that a “state” is a polity that maintains a monopoly on the legitimate use of violence, although other definitions are not uncommon. A state is not synonymous with a government as stateless governments like the Iroquois Confederacy exist.
Some states are sovereign (known as sovereign states), while others are subject to external sovereignty or hegemony, wherein supreme authority lies in another state.
In a federal union, the term “state” is sometimes used to refer to the federated polities that make up the federation. (Other terms that are used in such federal systems may include “province”, “region” or other terms.) In international law, such entities are not considered states, which is a term that relates only to the national entity, commonly referred to as the country or nation.
Most of the human population has existed within a state system for millennia; however, for most of prehistory people lived in stateless societies. The first states arose about 5,500 years ago in conjunction with rapid growth of cities, invention of writing and codification of new forms of religion. Over time, a variety of different forms developed, employing a variety of justifications for their existence (such as divine right, the theory of the social contract, etc.). Today, the modern nation state is the predominant form of state to which people are subject.
Statistics is the discipline that concerns the collection, organization, analysis, interpretation, and presentation of data. In applying statistics to a scientific, industrial, or social problem, it is conventional to begin with a statistical population or a statistical model to be studied. Populations can be diverse groups of people or objects such as “all people living in a country” or “every atom composing a crystal”. Statistics deals with every aspect of data, including the planning of data collection in terms of the design of surveys and experiments.
Statutory auditor is a title used in various countries to refer to a person or entity with an auditing role, whose appointment is mandated by the terms of a statute.
In social psychology, a stereotype is an over-generalized belief about a particular category of people. It is an expectation that people might have about every person of a particular group. The type of expectation can vary; it can be, for example, an expectation about the group’s personality, preferences, appearance or ability. Stereotypes are sometimes overgeneralized, inaccurate, and resistant to new information, but can sometimes be accurate.
While such generalizations about groups of people may be useful when making quick decisions, they may be erroneous when applied to particular individuals and are among the reasons for prejudice attitudes.
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In physiology, a stimulus is a detectable change in the physical or chemical structure of an organism’s internal or external environment. The ability of an organism or organ to detect external stimuli, so that an appropriate reaction can be made, is called sensitivity. Sensory receptors can receive information from outside the body, as in touch receptors found in the skin or light receptors in the eye, as well as from inside the body, as in chemoreceptors and mechanoreceptors. When a stimulus is detected by a sensory receptor, it can elicit a reflex via stimulus transduction. An internal stimulus is often the first component of a homeostatic control system. External stimuli are capable of producing systemic responses throughout the body, as in the fight-or-flight response. In order for a stimulus to be detected with high probability, its level of strength must exceed the absolute threshold; if a signal does reach threshold, the information is transmitted to the central nervous system (CNS), where it is integrated and a decision on how to react is made. Although stimuli commonly cause the body to respond, it is the CNS that finally determines whether a signal causes a reaction or not.
In psychology, a stimulus is any object or event that elicits a sensory or behavioral response in an organism.
In perceptual psychology, a stimulus is an energy change (e.g., light or sound) which is registered by the senses (e.g., vision, hearing, taste, etc.) and constitutes the basis for perception.
In behavioral psychology (i.e., classical and operant conditioning), a stimulus constitutes the basis for behavior. In this context, a distinction is made between the distal stimulus (the external, perceived object) and the proximal stimulus (the stimulation of sensory organs).
In experimental psychology, a stimulus is the event or object to which a response is measured. Thus, not everything that is presented to participants qualifies as stimulus. For example, a cross mark at the center of a screen is not said to be a stimulus, because it merely serves to center participants’ gaze on the screen. Also, it is uncommon to refer to longer events (e.g. the Trier social stress test) as a stimulus, even if a response to such an event is measured.
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Storytelling describes the social and cultural activity of sharing stories, sometimes with improvisation, theatrics, or embellishment. Every culture has its own stories or narratives, which are shared as a means of entertainment, education, cultural preservation or instilling moral values. Crucial elements of stories and storytelling include plot, characters and narrative point of view.
In the field of management, strategic management involves the formulation and implementation of the major goals and initiatives taken by an organization’s managers on behalf of stakeholders, based on consideration of resources and an assessment of the internal and external environments in which the organization operates. Strategic management provides overall direction to an enterprise and involves specifying the organization’s objectives, developing policies and plans to achieve those objectives, and then allocating resources to implement the plans. Academics and practicing managers have developed numerous models and frameworks to assist in strategic decision-making in the context of complex environments and competitive dynamics. Strategic management is not static in nature; the models often include a feedback loop to monitor execution and to inform the next round of planning.
Strategy (from Greek στρατηγία stratēgia, “art of troop leader; office of general, command, generalship”) is a general plan to achieve one or more long-term or overall goals under conditions of uncertainty. In the sense of the “art of the general”, which included several subsets of skills including military tactics, siegecraft, logistics etc., the term came into use in the 6th century C.E. in Eastern Roman terminology, and was translated into Western vernacular languages only in the 18th century. From then until the 20th century, the word “strategy” came to denote “a comprehensive way to try to pursue political ends, including the threat or actual use of force, in a dialectic of wills” in a military conflict, in which both adversaries interact.
Strategy is important because the resources available to achieve goals are usually limited. Strategy generally involves, setting goals and priorities, determining actions to achieve the goals, and mobilizing resources to execute the actions. A strategy describes how the ends (goals) will be achieved by the means (resources). Strategy can be intended or can emerge as a pattern of activity as the organization adapts to its environment or competes. It involves activities such as strategic planning and strategic thinking.
Stress, either physiological, biological, or psychological is an organism’s response to a stressor such as an environmental condition. Stress is the body’s method of reacting to a condition such as a threat, challenge or physical and psychological barrier. Stimuli that alter an organism’s environment are responded to by multiple systems in the body. In humans and most mammals, the autonomic nervous system and hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis are the two major systems that respond to stress.
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A student is primarily a person enrolled in a school or other educational institution and who is under learning with goals of acquiring knowledge, developing professions and achieving employment at desired field. In the broader sense, a student is anyone who applies themselves to the intensive intellectual engagement with some matter necessary to master it as part of some practical affair in which such mastery is basic or decisive.
In the United Kingdom and most commonwealth countries, the term “student” denotes those enrolled in secondary schools and higher (e.g., college or university); those enrolled in primary/elementary schools are called “pupils”.
In aesthetics, the sublime (from the Latin sublīmis) is the quality of greatness, whether physical, moral, intellectual, metaphysical, aesthetic, spiritual, or artistic. The term especially refers to a greatness beyond all possibility of calculation, measurement, or imitation.
Subliminal stimuli (/sʌbˈlɪmɪnəl/) (the prefix sub- literally means “below, or less than”), contrary to supraliminal stimuli or “above threshold”, are any sensory stimuli below an individual’s threshold for conscious perception. A 2012 review of functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) studies showed that subliminal stimuli activate specific regions of the brain despite participants’ unawareness. Visual stimuli may be quickly flashed before an individual can process them, or flashed and then masked to interrupt processing. Audio stimuli may be played below audible volumes or masked by other stimuli.
Sudoku (数独, sūdoku, digit-single) (/suːˈdoʊkuː/, /-ˈdɒk-/, /sə-/, originally called Number Place) is a logic-based, combinatorial number-placement puzzle. In classic sudoku, the objective is to fill a 9×9 grid with digits so that each column, each row, and each of the nine 3×3 subgrids that compose the grid (also called “boxes”, “blocks”, or “regions”) contains all of the digits from 1 to 9. The puzzle setter provides a partially completed grid, which for a well-posed puzzle has a single solution.
Suggestion is the psychological process by which one person guides the thoughts, feelings, or behavior of another person.
Surprise is a brief mental and physiological state, a startle response experienced by animals and humans as the result of an unexpected event. Surprise can have any valence; that is, it can be neutral/moderate, pleasant, unpleasant, positive, or negative. Surprise can occur in varying levels of intensity ranging from very-surprised, which may induce the fight-or-flight response, or little-surprise that elicits a less intense response to the stimuli.
Sustainability is the ability to exist constantly. In the 21st century, it refers generally to the capacity for the biosphere and human civilization to coexist. It is also defined as the process of people maintaining change in a homeostasis balanced environment, in which the exploitation of resources, the direction of investments, the orientation of technological development and institutional change are all in harmony and enhance both current and future potential to meet human needs and aspirations. For many in the field, sustainability is defined through the following interconnected domains or pillars: environment, economic and social, which according to Fritjof Capra is based on the principles of Systems Thinking. Sub-domains of sustainable development have been considered also: cultural, technological and political.
Sustainable development is the organizing principle for meeting human development goals while simultaneously sustaining the ability of natural systems to provide the natural resources and ecosystem services on which the economy and society depend. The desired result is a state of society where living conditions and resources are used to continue to meet human needs without undermining the integrity and stability of the natural system. Sustainable development can be defined as development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. Sustainability goals, such as the current UN-level Sustainable Development Goals, address the global challenges, including poverty, inequality, climate change, environmental degradation, peace, and justice.
While the modern concept of sustainable development is derived mostly from the 1987 Brundtland Report, it is also rooted in earlier ideas about sustainable forest management and twentieth-century environmental concerns. As the concept of sustainable development developed, it has shifted its focus more towards the economic development, social development and environmental protection for future generations. It has been suggested that “the term ‘sustainability’ should be viewed as humanity’s target goal of human–ecosystem equilibrium (homeostasis), while ‘sustainable development’ refers to the holistic approach and temporal processes that lead us to the end point of sustainability”. Modern economies are endeavouring to reconcile ambitious economic development and obligations of preserving natural resources and ecosystems, as the two are usually seen as of conflicting nature. Instead of holding climate change commitments and other sustainability measures as a remedy to economic development, turning and leveraging[clarification needed] them into market opportunities will do greater good. The economic development brought by such organized principles and practices in an economy is called Managed Sustainable Development (MSD).
Swimming is the self-propulsion of a person through water, usually for recreation, sport, exercise, or survival. Locomotion is achieved through coordinated movement of the limbs and the body. Humans can hold their breath underwater and undertake rudimentary locomotive swimming within weeks of birth, as a survival response.
Swimming is consistently among the top public recreational activities, and in some countries, swimming lessons are a compulsory part of the educational curriculum. As a formalized sport, swimming features in a range of local, national, and international competitions, including every modern Summer Olympics.
Swimming is an individual or team racing sport that requires the use of one’s entire body to move through water. The sport takes place in pools or open water (e.g., in a sea or lake). Competitive swimming is one of the most popular Olympic sports, with varied distance events in butterfly, backstroke, breaststroke, freestyle, and individual medley. In addition to these individual events, four swimmers can take part in either a freestyle or medley relay. A medley relay consists of four swimmers who will each swim a different stroke, ordered as backstroke, breaststroke, butterfly and freestyle.
SWOT analysis (or SWOT matrix) is a strategic planning technique used to help a person or organization identify strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats related to business competition or project planning.
This technique, which operates by ‘peeling back layers of the company’ is designed for use in the preliminary stages of decision-making processes and can be used as a tool for evaluation of the strategic position of organizations of many kinds (for-profit enterprises, local and national governments, NGOs, etc.). It is intended to specify the objectives of the business venture or project and identify the internal and external factors that are favorable and unfavorable to achieving those objectives. Users of a SWOT analysis often ask and answer questions to generate meaningful information for each category to make the tool useful and identify their competitive advantage. SWOT has been described as the tried-and-true tool of strategic analysis, but has also been criticized for its limitations (see § Limitations and alternatives).
Sympathy is the perception, understanding, and reaction to the distress or need of another life form. According to David Hume, this sympathetic concern is driven by a switch in viewpoint from a personal perspective to the perspective of another group or individual who is in need. David Hume explained that this is the case because “the minds of all men are similar in their feelings and operations” and that “the motion of one communicates itself to the rest” so that as affectations readily pass from one to another, they beget corresponding movements.
Synergy is an interaction or cooperation giving rise to a whole that is greater than the simple sum of its parts. The term synergy comes from the Attic Greek word συνεργία synergia from synergos, συνεργός, meaning “working together”.
A system is a group of interacting or interrelated elements that act according to a set of rules to form a unified whole. A system, surrounded and influenced by its environment, is described by its boundaries, structure and purpose and expressed in its functioning. Systems are the subjects of study of systems theory.
Systems science is an interdisciplinary field that studies the nature of systems—from simple to complex—in nature, society, cognition, engineering, technology and science itself. To systems scientists, the world can be understood as a system of systems. The field aims to develop interdisciplinary foundations that are applicable in a variety of areas, such as psychology, biology, medicine, communication, business management, technology, computer science, engineering, and social sciences.
Systems science covers formal sciences such as complex systems, cybernetics, dynamical systems theory, information theory, linguistics or systems theory. It has applications in the field of the natural and social sciences and engineering, such as control theory, systems design, operations research, social systems theory, systems biology, system dynamics, human factors, systems ecology, computer science, systems engineering and systems psychology. Themes commonly stressed in system science are (a) holistic view, (b) interaction between a system and its embedding environment, and (c) complex (often subtle) trajectories of dynamic behavior that sometimes are stable (and thus reinforcing), while at various ‘boundary conditions’ can become wildly unstable (and thus destructive). Concerns about Earth-scale biosphere/geosphere dynamics is an example of the nature of problems to which systems science seeks to contribute meaningful insights.