Susan Freeman, Chair
Main Office, 3061 Moore Hall
Telephone: (269) 387-2511
Gender and Women’s Studies courses are open to all students and may fulfill General Education, Liberal Education, major/minor, and elective requirements. Gender and Women’s Studies courses encourage in students a spirit of inquiry and teach approaches to thought and action that prepare students to function effectively in a diverse, rapidly changing society. The organizing principle of the field is the concept of gender as a social construction; equally important are the categories of ethnicity, race, class, age, sexual identity, and nationality, and gender is always investigated within this context. Course work investigates the condition of women in societies, historically and currently, and approaches issues related to women and gender through multi-disciplinary and interdisciplinary methods. Gender and Women’s Studies seeks to develop students’ critical skills and creative potential in analyzing issues and conceiving solutions to problems regarding women and gender in a democratic society.
The Gender and Women’s Studies major requires a minimum of 31 credit hours. Course work in the major includes an interdisciplinary core consisting of an introductory course, intermediate courses focusing on research and theory, and concluding courses providing research possibilities and practical experience. Further course work is to be selected from the list of approved electives in consultation with the Gender and Women’s Studies advisor.
The Gender and Women’s Studies minor brings an additional perspective to any field of study. It consists of 22 hours of course work, including the required Introduction to Women’s Studies and other courses to be selected from Gender and Women’s Studies core courses or the approved electives list.
In addition to the courses listed, students may pursue special interests and projects through independent studies, which offer variable credit hours for projects developed in consultation with the Gender and Women’s Studies advisor.
Courses in Gender and Women’s Studies at the 5000-level are designed to serve advanced undergraduate and graduate students. These courses provide the most advanced work in the program and are restricted to students with 12 hours in GWS approved courses, including GWS 2000, and at least junior status. Some courses impose further prerequisites and departmental approval. The 5000-level courses are also open to graduate students.