Women's and Gender Studies Minor

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Fast Facts: Women's and Gender Studies Minor

  • Encourages students to think and move beyond traditional gender-role barriers that still exist today
  • Cultivates critical thinking about women, sexuality and gender in relation to current issues through use of an interdisciplinary approach
  • Broadens student perceptions of women's history, writings, art and literature by giving careful attention to multicultural viewpoints
  • Recognizes the importance of feminist theory in understanding modern women's and LGBT movements in America and around the world

Program Requirements

Minor: 20 credits


Students with a minor in Women's and Gender Studies have gone on to enjoy careers in healthcare, publishing, the ministry and midwifery. Others have gone on to pursue graduate study.

Sample Curriculum

Here are some classes you could take as part of this major or minor. Please note that you would not necessarily need all of these courses to fulfill a major or minor. This list doesn't include general education courses. Be sure to create your course plan in consultation with your advisor.

Course Creation Center

Expand and Collapse Coursework

Expand and Collapse ENG 1130 - Intro to Literature by Women

Survey of literature written in English by women from the Medieval period to the present. This course emphasizes the diversity of women’s literary voices even as it is structured around their shared themes and purposes. Readings include poems, short fiction, drama, nonfiction prose, and at least one novel.

Expand and Collapse ENG 3370 - Studies in Women's Literature

Studies focused on, for example, literature of women's friendship and mother-daughter literature.

Expand and Collapse GCL 2231 - Cultural Anthropology

Addresses concepts, methods, and theories exploring social and cultural life across time and space, including the changing concept of culture itself. The course is an introduction to ethnographic fieldwork methods and to the practice of anthropology, with attention to the impact of contemporary social forces on the diverse societies that make up the modern world.

Expand and Collapse HIS 3320 - Women- United States History I

Examines significant topics in U.S. women's history from the Colonial period to 1890, focusing on the roles that women of different classes and races have played in shaping society.

Expand and Collapse HIS 3321 - Women-United States History II

Examines significant topics in U.S. women's history from the 1890s through the present, focusing on the roles that women of different classes and races have played in shaping society.

Expand and Collapse HIS 3324 - African American History I

Examines significant topics in African American history from the period of forced migration to the Americas through Reconstruction. Analyzes the roles African Americans of different classes and genders have played in shaping U.S. history.

Expand and Collapse HIS 3325 - African American History II

Examines significant topics in African American history from Reconstruction through the current experience of diverse members of the African Diaspora living in the U.S. Analyzes the roles African Americans of different classes and genders have played in shaping U.S. history.

Expand and Collapse HIS 3350 - Feminism & Globalization

Explores how European imperialist accounts of non-European women's experiences have been crucial to culturally dominant ideas about feminism, globalization, and the legacy of the colonial state throughout the so-called Third World. Beginning with a critical and historical overview of feminist theory and practice, the course will trace recent studies, both historical and ethnographic, of how terms such as " women," "religion," and "the body" were radically changed by the colonial projects of the 19th century (e.g. in South Asia and Africa) - projects that are intimately related to contemporary debates on transnational women's movements and globalization.

Expand and Collapse HUM 2150 - Ethnicity & Performing Arts

A consideration of the impact of the performing arts (music and dance) within African-American, American Indian, Asian-American, and Latino/a communities in the United States. Our study is structured around social and political movements that have emerged out of the performing arts. By examining songs, poetry, dance and martial arts forms in their cultural, historical and political contexts, we consider how individuals and communities use them to construct racial, class and gender identity, to express world view, make political statements, question authority and seek social justice. Throughout the course, we seek out common themes and concerns faced by the four communities we study, but we also note the ways in which individual artists creatively engage with, express, and are empowered by cultural difference.

Expand and Collapse INS 3320 - American Indian Women: Myth/Rl

Issues of early American Indian/white relations, spirituality and religion, economic roles, policy, cultural persistence, land tenure, socialization and property rights and the role of mothers from the Indian female perspective.

Expand and Collapse MUS 3309 - World Music

Study of art, folk, and popular music of both Eastern and Western cultures and relationship of the music to the history, geography and society of the region. No prerequisites or musical experience necessary.

Expand and Collapse PHL 3360 - Philosophies of Feminism

Examines theoretical accounts of the relation between women and men in present society, identification of assumptions within the feminist accounts, and evaluation of proposals for change.

Expand and Collapse PSY 3340 - Psychology of Gender

Introduces students to the research methods, findings, and theories of psychology of gender. Students examine evidence for gender differences and similarities in cognitive abilities, personality, social behavior and mental health, and explore nature and nurture explanations. Gender stereotypes and their impact are discussed. Women's and men's experiences in the workplace, in relationships, and in parenting are major focuses. Prerequisite: one psychology course or consent of instructor.

Expand and Collapse SOC 2433 - The Family and Society

Exploration of the meaning and variety of family life in the United States and other cultures. Classic and contemporary theories are combined with recent research findings to understand the changing definitions and contexts of family life. Emphasis is placed on the study of the family in a broader context, including the influence of neighborhoods, schools and religion, socioeconomic inequalities, gender roles, domestic abuse, divorce, and a life span approach to family life.

Expand and Collapse TRS 2243 - Women and Religion

Examines the historical and cultural understandings of women in religions of the world. The course emphasizes the work of contemporary women thinkers who are exploring various dimensions of the question of women’s presence, exclusion and contribution to religion. Through historical and comparative study the course will provide both a critical and a constructive understanding of the contributions that women make to religions, as well as the influence of religions on the situation of women in the world. This course will acknowledge the heritage of women’s strength, resistance and celebration in responding to exclusion and oppression and look at some of the ways in which women today are seeking full and authentic participation in the life of their religious traditions and their communities.

Expand and Collapse TRS 3380 - Women's Spirituality/Literatur

Involves students in the process of their own spiritual journey as well as examines the spirituality of female characters in literature. In addition, poetry, theology and spirituality texts are studied to provide the students with guides for reflection. This course incorporates journals, papers, presentations and final integration paper.

Expand and Collapse TRS 4440 - Women Mystics

Examines the mystical tradition through the examination of the lives and writings of selected women mystics. A typical reading list might include works of Julian of Norwich, Catherine of Siena, Teresa of Avila, Therese of Lisieux, Simone Weil, Edith Stein and Hildegard of Bingen.

Expand and Collapse WGS 1011 - Intro to Women & Gender Studie

Provides students with a theoretical foundation for the issues explored in other Women's Studies courses. Topics include the effect of gender dynamics upon: self identity, relationships, family, work and institutions. Students will further develop their reading, writing, thinking, speaking and listening skills as they study women's issues from a global perspective within the context of race, class, ethnicity and sexual preference.

Expand and Collapse WGS 2777 - Topics in Women's Studies

Various departments offer topics courses which are applicable to women's studies. Check with the coordinator for current offerings on the schedule.

Expand and Collapse WGS 4555 - Women & Gender Studies Practic

Provides students with an opportunity to work in an agency/organization as a women's studies intern and to explore areas of interest, such as feminist scholarship, in a seminar format. This course is the capstone course for minors. Prerequisite: WMS 1011

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