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Women's Studies (WS) Course Descriptions

College of Education and Human Development

WS 2013  Introduction to Women’s Studies
(3-0) 3 hours credit.
This course introduces students to core concepts and frameworks in women’s, gender, and sexuality studies, using interdisciplinary and cross-cultural approaches. Women and gender are studied as socially constructed categories created through institutions such as culture, the law, the media, and globalization. The course will provide students with the tools of critical feminist inquiry to assess how women’s lived experiences are shaped by such categories as race, ethnicity, class, nationality, sexuality, and disability. Students will examine theories and analytical concepts that emerge from specific historical periods and social movements. May be applied toward the Core Curriculum requirement in Language, Philosophy and Culture. (Formerly WGS 2013. Credit cannot be earned for both WS 2013 and WGS 2013.)

WS 2023  Introduction to LGBTQ Studies
(3-0) 3 hours credit.
This interdisciplinary course introduces concepts and theories within LGBTQ Studies. Topics include issues related to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer communities. The central focus is to examine, challenge, and destabilize normative conceptualizations and representations of gender and sexuality. This class emphasizes different aspects of LGBTQ studies including history, queer theory, popular culture, media, and literature. Course work centers on complicating notions of queer identity through intersections of race, class, gender, and globalization. May be repeated for credit when topics vary.

WS 3613  Feminist Research Methodologies
(3-0) 3 hours credit.
Rigorous examination of the theory, application, and ethical and epistemological concerns of feminist research. What does it mean to “research as a feminist”? Are there particular ways of producing knowledge as women? Investigating women’s issues within and across a range of traditional disciplines—history, arts, humanities, sciences, education, health, economics, law, etc.—the course will engage issues of researcher-subject relationships, representation, and value-driven research, to respond to dominant theories of knowledge production.

WS 3953  Special Topics in Women Writers
(3-0) 3 hours credit.
This course examines women’s texts with special attention to understanding gender as a category of analysis. Variable topics may include women in the sciences, women and technology, literary and cultural representations, women and business, historical and political change, questions of class and nation, queer or transgender theories, or medical and health experiences. This class may emphasize the importance of intersecting categories of analysis including gender, race, ethnicity, and sexuality. May be repeated for credit when topics vary. (Formerly WGS 4853 and WS 4853.)

WS 4623  Feminist Theories
(3-0) 3 hours credit.
This course will introduce multidisciplinary explorations of theorists’ attempts to describe, explain, and critique social institutions. Students will examine feminist theoretical positions on gender and women in the study of the humanities and/or social sciences. Topics may include the ways in which women have been represented in cultural production with special consideration of race, ethnicity, class, sexuality, and nationalism. (Formerly WGS 4623. Credit cannot be earned for both WS 4623 and WGS 4623.)

WS 4863  Feminism and Globalization
(3-0) 3 hours credit.
Theoretical, historical, and empirical analysis of how current processes of globalization are transforming the actual conditions of women’s lives, labor, gender ideologies, and politics in complex and contradictory ways. Topics include feminist exploration of colonialism, capitalism, economic restructuring policies, and resistance in consumer and environmental movements.

WS 4913  Independent Study
3 hours credit. Prerequisites: Permission in writing (form available) from the instructor, the student’s advisor, the Department Chair, and Dean of the College with which the instructor is affiliated.
Independent reading, research, discussion, and/or writing under the direction of a faculty member. A maximum of 3 semester credit hours of Independent Study in Women’s Studies may be applied to the Minor in Women’s Studies. May be repeated for credit, but no more than 6 semester credit hours of independent study, regardless of discipline, will apply to a bachelor's degree. (Formerly WGS 4913.)

WS 4933  Internship in Women’s Studies
3 hours credit. Prerequisite: Consent of instructor.
Supervised experience relevant to Women’s Studies. May be repeated once for credit, but no more than 3 semester credit hours will apply to the Women’s Studies major. (Formerly WGS 4933.)

WS 4953  Special Topics in Women's Studies
(3-0) 3 hours credit.
This course offers an examination of an individual topic or set of issues in Women’s Studies. May be repeated for credit when topics vary. (Formerly WS 3713.)

WS 4973  Seminar in Women’s Studies
(3-0) 3 hours credit. Prerequisite: 12 upper-division semester credit hours in Women’s Studies.
This undergraduate seminar, limited to Women’s Studies majors in their senior year, offers the opportunity to study a special topic, issue, author, or period in Women’s Studies. May be repeated once for credit when topics vary.

WS 4993  Honors Thesis
3 hours credit. Prerequisite: Consent of instructor.
Supervised research and preparation of an Honors Thesis for the purpose of earning Women’s Studies Honors. May be repeated once with advisor approval.