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WGS Course Descriptions


  • ART 390 Women in the Visual Arts (5)

    The history of female accomplishments in the visual arts, including examination of the problem of image choices by female artists, and a survey of changing ideals in the representation of the female form in differing world cultures and historical periods.

    Prerequisite: Completion of General Education areas A and C.

Behavioral Studies

  • BEHS 435 Family and Kin: Comparative Perspectives (5)

    An introduction to alternate family style and kin networks in nonWestern and Western societies. Primary attention given to exploring the relationships between types of domestic groups and their cultural context. Recommended: one course in anthropology or sociology. Carries credit in either Anthropology or Sociology. GRE

Children and Family Studies

  • CAFS 320 Individual and Family Development in Diverse Cultures (5)

    An exploration of the values, attitudes, child rearing practices, family, and social relationships in a variety of diverse settings. The impact of these factors on personal, social, economic, and political systems will be discussed. Comparisons with western family systems including cultural universals and differences will be emphasized. The course will also discuss immigrant experiences in the United States. GRE


  • COMM 360 Gender and Communication (5)

    This course introduces students to differences in gender communication; analyzes how institutional, personal, and group factors affect the messages we produce and the meanings we assign to messages. It also assesses the extent to which gender can both enrich and complicate human communication, particularly in personal and professional environments. Particular attention paid to how the mass media depicts gender. The course subscribes to an interdisciplinary approach that relies heavily on literature both inside and outside the field of communication. GRE

Criminal Justice

  • CRJU 325 Women and the Criminal Justice System (5)

    This course considers the experience of women in their dealings with the criminal justice system from three perspectives: that of the female offender, the female crime victim, and the female employee or administrator. The course will approach these perspectives from both historical and contemporary contexts. The course examines specific types of criminality and victimization common to women as well as opportunities for women to participate in the administration of the criminal justice system as employees. The relationships between female criminality, victimization, and employment and broader social, political, and economic definitions of female deviance and conformity are addressed as well. GRE

  • CRJU 430 Victims and the Criminal Justice System (5)

    An examination of the relationship between victims of crime and the criminal justice system. Primary consideration is given to cultural and societal assumptions about gender, race, class, ethnicity, and sexual orientation prevalent throughout the study of victimology. Special emphasis will be placed upon such topics as the characteristics of crime victims, patterns of crime reporting and non-reporting, the treatment of crime victims by the various components of the criminal justice system, victim assistance programs, victim compensation, and victims' rights laws.

    Prerequisite: CRJU 100 or its equivalent, or permission of instructor. GRE


  • ECON 380 Gender and Diversity in Workplace (5)

    Development of topics in labor economics from the perspectives of gender studies. Considerations of both national trends and international comparisons. Topics include household production and time allocation, labor force participation, human capital accumulation, regional mobility, and occupational choices, wage differentials, discrimination, and poverty.

    Prerequisite: any introductory course in social and behavioral sciences or permission of instructor. GRE

  • ECON 381 Race, Gender and Prosperity in America (5)

    Investigation of reasons for economic success and failures of minority members within our economy. This course will start with the main economic tools necessary for policy analysis, move on to economic status, causes and cures, and finish with discrimination. Social policies will be examined including but not restricted to equal employment opportunity and equality of income for Women, Hispanics, and African Americans.

    Prerequisite: any introductory course in social and behavioral sciences or permission of instructor.GRE


  • ENGL 366 Ethnic Literatures (5)

    An intensive examination of the experiences of writers both in the U.S. and abroad who are concerned with issues of race, ethnicity, class, and gender in their fiction, non-fiction, and poetry. Students will explore a range of writers, literary works, movements, and contexts that represent diverse and often marginalized cultural voices.

    Prerequisite: ENGL 101 or the equivalent or one course from ENGL 205, 207, 208, 272, 290, 294, or 295. GE T2

  • ENGL 367 Queer Literature (5)

    The study of literature by and concerning queer persons (gay, lesbian, bisexual, transsexual, pansexual). Consideration of changing gender identities in different periods and cultures; examination of the connections between literary representation, culture, and individual experience.

    Prerequisite: ENGL 101 or the equivalent or one course from ENGL 205, 207, 208, 272, 290, 294, 295.

  • ENGL 370 Literature by Women of Color (5)

    An extensive examination of the experiences of women of color both in the U.S. and abroad as portrayed in their fiction, nonfiction, and poetry and as interpreted in feminist and ethnic literary theory and criticism. Writers studied may include Bessie Head, Paula Gunn Allen, Nawal el-Sadaawi, Bharati Mukherjee, and Maxine Hong Kingston, as well as others.

    Prerequisite: ENGL 101 or the equivalent or one course from ENGL 205, 207, 208, 272, 290, 294, or 295. This is a writing intensive class. GRE

  • ENGL 373 Women in Literature and Film (5)

    The depiction of women in representative works of literature and film, focusing on the perceptions of women writers and film makers about roles, functions, and societal expectations that influence women's goals and self concepts.

    Prerequisite: ENGL 101 or the equivalent or one course from ENGL 205, 207, 208, 272, 290, 294, or 295. This is a writing intensive class. GE T2

  • ENGL 374 Gender in Literature and Film (5)

    Investigation of gender identity as represented in literature and film. This course will: Examine what forces can be understood as shaping gender (roles, functions, expectations) and what may be perceived as inherent or natural to an individual identity. Address apparently changing identities in different cultures and periods. Consider connections between literary and visual representation, gender, culture, and lived experience.

    Prerequisite: ENGL 101 or the equivalent or one course from ENGL 205, 207, 208, 272, 290, 294, 295.GRE


  • FREN 425 The Novels of Colette in Translation (5)

    A study of a selection of Colette's novels with emphasis on her career as a major French novelist. Attention will be given to the history of the novel in France and to Colette's contribution to the twentieth century French novel. Course taught in French or English. GRE

  • FREN 426 French Women Writers in Translation (5)

    A study of twentieth century French women novelists with a special emphasis on the history and role of the female novelist in France. Attention is given to methods of female and male characterization as well as to the exploration of common themes found in these novels. Course taught in French or English. GRE

General Studies

  • GST 132 Gender Matters (2)

    The Women's Day program will focus on efforts to empower women and increase their participation in public office as well as deal with the ongoing issues of discrimination that they continue to face.

  • GST 149 Gay and Lesbian Issues (1)

    This course provides an introductory exposure to gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgendered issues through lecture, presentation, activities, and discussion. Each quarter a new topic of importance to gay/lesbian/bisexual/ transgendered individuals will be presented. Recent examples include Gays and Lesbians in the Media, Gays and Lesbians in Sports, Queer Films of Derek Jarman, Queer Poetry, Gay Spirituality.

    The goal of this course is to provide understanding and exposure specifically for an individual who wants to better understand a family member or friend who is gay, for a person seeking a positive supportive environment to explore their own gay identity, or for any person attempting to understand human diversity. This course may be repeated for five units of credit as the content and topic changes each quarter. For additional information see the GST 149 Welcome page in Blackboard.


  • HIST 421 Gender in East Asia (5)

    The evolution of sex and gender as they have been influenced by traditional thought systems and by social and economic developments over time. Topics include ideas about masculinity and femininity, division of labor, economic and legal status of women, marriage and dowry, sexuality and the female body. GRE

  • HIST 462 Women and Gender in the Modern Transatlantic World (5)

    A comparative history of women in North America. and Europe since 1700. The course investigates changes in the legal status, social roles, and behavior of women of different classes, ethnicities, and cultural backgrounds. It examines the rise of women's and feminist organizations with a focus on their impact on their societies, as well as their influences in Europe and across the Atlantic in North America. Major upheavals such as war, political revolutions, dictatorships, and genocide and how they affected women will also be investigated. GRE

Interdisciplinary Studies

  • INST 205 Introduction to Women's and Gender Studies (5)

    Introduction to women's and gender studies drawing on multiple disciplines such as art, communication, economics, history, literature, philosophy, political science, psychology, religious studies, and sociology. This class will introduce students to several different frameworks for thinking about sex and gender, their intersections with other social categories such as race, class, and sexuality, and their differences across various social and cultural contexts. We will consider the ways that gender functions in the arts, humanities, and social sciences, and how it impacts the concrete reality of women's and men's lives. GRE


  • NURS 327 Women's Health (5)

    This course covers women's health care from a primary care and well-being perspective. Emphasis is placed on health care concerns and preventive measures for women in various stages of the life cycle. Included are traditional reproductive content as well as selected common medical and psycho-social-developmental political problems and issues as they relate to women's health. The importance of health responsibility being assumed by the individual is emphasized.

    Prerequisites: PSYC 100, SOC 100, and ENGL 110. GRE

Phyiscal Education & Kinesiology

  • PEAK 430 Women in Sport (5)

    A multidisciplinary study of the problems, patterns, and processes associated with women's sport involvement in our culture. Reflects changing trends in education and society, including current legislation and feminist ideas. Lecture/discussion. GRE


  • PHIL 381 Feminist Philosophy (5)

    This course examines feminist theory and practice through the writings of historical and contemporary philosophers. Topics may include feminist revisions of the philosophical canon, analyses of oppression and critiques of patriarchy, critiques of sexism and homophobia, approaches to moral, legal, and social philosophy, approaches to ontology and epistemology, and analyses of sexuality, femininity, marriage, motherhood, prostitution, pornography, sexual violence, and social change.

    Recommended prerequisite: INST 205. GRE

Political Science

  • PLSI 339 Women in Politics (5)

    The course presents a general understanding of feminist concepts and gender cultural differences that affect American and International politics. For American politics, the emphasis is on how gender ideas affect public opinion, voting patterns, campaigning and women as leaders. The course applies a gender lens to basic questions of international relations, such as national security questions, economic development, and foreign policy. GRE


  • PSYC 341 Psychological Aspects of Human Sexuality (5)

    Consideration of the psychological, developmental, psychosocial, and psychopathological aspects of human sexuality. Discussion of the theories and research of Kinsey, Masters and Johnson, Money, Freud and others. Prerequisite: One course in Psychology or permission of instructor.

  • PSYC 342 The Psychology of Sexual Orientation (5)

    The purpose of this course is to incorporate information from a variety of different fields (e.g., history, sociology, biology) to address psychological issues relevant to sexual orientation. In this course, students will critically examine attitudes, assumptions, and research regarding straight, lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgendered people.

    Topics will include the development of gender and sexual orientation, historical views of sexual orientation, differences between individuals with different orientations, progression and change in orientation throughout the lifespan, social/legal policies regarding sexual orientation, and stereotypes and discrimination of individuals with particular orientations.

    Prerequisite: One course in Psychology or permission of instructor.

  • PSYC 421 Psychology of Women (5)

    Theory and research on the development of sex roles and sex differences, with an emphasis on the roles of women. Students of all sexes are welcome to participate.

    Prerequisite: One course in Psychology or permission of instructor. GRE

Religious Studies

  • RS 360 Women, Religion, and Sexuality (5)

    In this course we will investigate the various ways major religious traditions, Western and Asian, represent and legislate women and sexuality in their literatures and institutions in diverse historical contexts. Using a range of methodologies, with particular emphasis on feminist critique, we will also examine the nature of women's participation and leadership in these traditions as well as religious choices made by "post" Jewish and Christian feminists. GRE

  • RS 410: Religion, Ethics and Human Sexuality (5)

    What is the relationship between religious belief and our attitudes and practices regarding sexuality? This course explores various answers to this question through an examination of how tradition-based approaches to ethics in Judaism, Christianity and Islam shape understandings or human sexuality and establish normative practices, as well as feminist and womanist works that address questions of sexuality and the family.>


  • SOC 328 Chicana Experiences (5)

    An examination of the contemporary experiences of Chicanas/Latinas in the U.S. with a focus on theoretical issues related to bicultural identity, gender, race and class. Special emphasis is given to Chicana feminist thought in the analysis of social, economic and political forces that impact their lives. The course includes critical perspectives on the Chicana/o Movement, the Women's Movement and the role of Chicana self-determination in the struggle for equality and social justice in the United States.

  • SOC 364 Family and Society (5)

    An analysis of the study of the family from a developmental perspective. Specific attention is given to mate selection, marriage, parenthood and parent-child relations, and family relations during the middle and later years of life. Emphasis is on the contemporary American family.

  • SOC 370 Gender and Society (5)

    In this course we will critically explore the social construction of gender. Attention will be given to the many diverse issues and experiences of gendered individuals. Throughout the course, we will look at how multiple and interlocking social structures (e.g., race, class gender, sexuality) shape the various ways in which we experience gender. Although there is an emphasis on issues and experiences within American culture, we will study gender in a global context as well. Furthermore, this course examines how gender difference and inequality are created, sustained and/or changed through socialization practices, interactions with others, and through the influence of major social institutions. GRE

  • SOC 464 Family and Stress (5)

    Analysis of family ability to withstand external and internal stress; community structure and family location in the community as factors in the development of and response to stress; and the relationship of individual adjustment to family reaction to stress. Discussion focuses on, for example, the following kinds of stress situations: divorce, death of a spouse or child, physical disaster, long-term physical or mental illness, chronic unemployment, and imprisonment.

  • SOC 465 The Gay and Lesbian Experience in the United States (5)

    Lesbian/gay studies; personal, political, economic, historical and cultural issues, including: coming out, hate crimes, law, military, marriage, families, religion, activism, community, representations in literature, film, and media.


  • THTR 381 Women Playwrights (5)

    An examination of the contributions to dramatic literature by post 19th century women playwrights. Representative scripts by universally recognized playwrights will be read and discussed. Plays will be analyzed for their social point of view, as well as stylistic innovations.

    Prerequisite: ENGL 110 or equivalent. GRE

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