The Social Theory in Education Primer shows how classical sociology sets the frame for theory and research in education. Three major paradigms are explained in their historical context, and are used as a key to making sense of contemporary work that understands education from a sociological point of view. The central classical theorists considered are seen both in their own context, and also as the founders of the major movements that have continuing influence. The social theories of Durkheim, Marx, and Weber are used to frame and orient concepts for the different models of contemporary work. This primer is essential reading for courses devoted to social theory and education; sociology of education; social foundations of education; history of education; history of sociology; sociological theory; and sociology of knowledge.