Fall 2014 Undergraduate Catalog
College of Arts and Sciences

+ Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies

228 Shatzel, 419-372-7133

Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies is an interdisciplinary major offering critical historical, sociological, philosophical, psychological, and literary examinations of the lives of women. Courses examine the ways in which gender, sexuality, ethnicity, and class were constructed in specific historical periods or cultures and trace the impact of these social categories on people's lives, concepts, and values today. They offer women and men of all backgrounds and viewpoints the opportunity to work together to develop and test ways of envisioning human life and community.

Readings and classroom discussions introduce students to the new scholarship, which reveal the ways in which women's lives have been frequently erased from traditional scholarship. Faculty encourage critical analyses of women in society, culture, and history; they promote active learning and social responsibility.

Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of the baccalaureate degree, students in Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies are expected to be able to:

  • Discuss the multiple types of feminisms that currently exist in the U.S. and internationally, as well as their histories and development;
  • Critically analyze and make profitable connections between feminist theories and feminist practices;
  • Explicate the basic debates or areas of contention within contemporary feminist thought;
  • Describe the multiple ways in which gender is intersected by other social relations such as race, ethnicity, sexuality, class, and nation;
  • Identify the basic components that distinguish feminist methodologies from other approaches to inquiry and the ways in which Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies approaches have transformed traditional disciplines;
  • Communicate clearly and effectively in written and oral expression.

Major, Bachelor of Arts (33 hours) — minor required — click click to display detailed requirements for Fall 2014 course requirements

Women's Studies Minor (21 hours)

  • WS 2000 (3)
  • One course that focuses on gender and race/ethnicity in local or global contexts (e.g. WS 3050, WS 3130, WS 3440), selected in consultation with the program advisor.
  • Five additional courses (15 hours) on women and/or gender that are selected in consultation with the program advisor, at least one of which must be at the 4000 level.

Sexuality Studies Minor (21 hours)

Sexuality Studies is an interdisciplinary minor that critically explores sexuality as a culturally and historically specific construct, a form of human expression, and a social identity that impacts our understandings of citizenship, politics, and humanity. Students learn how sex and sexuality function in their own lives and in diverse populations. Courses in the minor cover topics as diverse as sexual identity, relationships, representations of sexuality, sexual well being and behavior. The minor emphasizes a cross-cultural and intersectional understanding of sexuality with a particular emphasis on gender, race, class, age and disability. As an interdisciplinary minor, students also become familiar with the ways in which sex and sexuality are addressed in various disciplines and in social justice movements for sexual minorities.

The program consists of 21 credit hours. Students are required to take WS 2610. In addition, students must take an additional 18 credit hours of courses focusing on Sexuality Studies. The Sexuality Studies minor is housed in the Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies program.

Required Courses (3 Hours)

  • WS 2610: Introduction to LGBT Studies (3 credits)
  • Eighteen additional credit hours focusing on Sexuality Studies. Courses can be chosen from the list of approved Sexuality Studies courses below or with the approval of the CCS/WS advisor.

Approved Sexuality Studies courses:

  • WS 4550/ETHN 4550: Latina/o Gender and Sexuality (3)
  • WS 3610: Histories of Queer Activism (3)
  • WS 4450: Women's Sexualities (3)
  • WS 3510: Topics in Sexuality Studies (1-4) +
  • ENG 3110: Gay and Lesbian Literature and Criticism (3)
  • HDFS 2020: Contemporary Marriages and Families (3)
  • HDFS 4080: Family Diversity (3)
  • HDFS 4280: Sexuality in Human Development & Family Studies (3) or HP 3380: Concepts of Human Sexuality (3)
  • MEDT 3800: AIDS Education in the Schools (2)
  • PSYC 3070: Human Sexuality (3)
  • SOC 3610: The Family (3)

+ This course can be repeated if offered under different Sexuality Studies topics.

IMPORTANT NOTE: Courses that are used to satisfy requirements for a major cannot also be used to satisfy requirements for the Sexuality Studies minor.

Career opportunities
The Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies Program prepares students for a variety of careers. Recent graduates have entered such fields as law, communications, education, health care, business, counseling, library science, and the ministry.

Students are encouraged to develop coordinated major-minor and double-major programs that research and analyze the development and application of specific gender themes. Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies majors engage in community-based service learning and gain experience in conducting research.