Back to University Catalog 2005-2007

Women’s Studies         

College of Liberal Arts                                            

Division of World Cultural Studies



Women's Studies Advisory Board

Clare Weber,  Program Coordinator                             

Dolo Brooking (Humanities); Brett Christie (Kinesiology and Recreation); Jeanne Curran (Sociology); Bill De Luca (Theatre Arts);  Miguel Dominguez (Foreign Languages); Susan Fellows (Sociology); Lorna Fitzsimmons (Humanities); Joyce Johnson (English); Gary Kawaguchi (Asian Pacific Studies); Antoinette Marich (Kinesiology and Recreation); Robyn McGee (Director, Women's Center); Linda Pomerantz (History, Interdisciplinary Studies); Frank Stricker (History, Interdisciplinary Studies, Labor Studies); Judith Todd (Human Services, Psychology).


Program Description

The Women’s Studies is administered through the College of Liberal Arts.

Women’s Studies is a field of multidisciplinary studies that analyzes the role of women in culture.  The study of women in history and contemporary life enables students to consider the distinctive past and present of women, deriving from their unique biological, economic and political situation, and to become familiar with the artistic and literary depiction of women.  By studying women of a variety of cultures and ethnicities, insight into the universality and specificity of women’s roles is gained.  The purpose of the Women’s Studies Minor is to offer students the opportunity to explore the ways in which socio-economic institutions, culture, race, class, gender, sexuality, and ideas have combined to determine woman’s places and to examine the strategies that women have developed to challenge the limiting parameters of these places.


Academic Advisement

Students are expected to seek faculty advisement from faculty teaching in the minor and on a regular basis thereafter.  Since Women’s Studies courses must be coordinated with many departments, it is especially important that Women’s Studies Minors keep in touch with faculty advisors in the program on a regular basis, to keep informed about what courses are being offered each semester so that they can plan their schedules accordingly. This program is currently being revised.  Substitution of courses other than those in the program requires the prior approval of an advisor.  The faculty can also assist students in recommending graduate programs in Women’s Studies.



No specific high school or community college courses are required as prerequisites. Students are expected to have adequate reading and writing skills and an interest in under standing the complex forces that determine gender roles.


Career Possibilities

A Minor in Women’s Studies is an excellent preparation for students wishing to better understand the changing relationship of women to the family and work.  The minor can help students evaluate their own choices and options in a rapidly changing society and understand where and how their talents and skills may best serve their own and society’s needs.  For those students interested in pursuing advanced degrees, Women’s Studies is a solid preparation for fields in the Social and Behavioral Sciences and the Humanities.  Women’s Studies also enables students interested  Human Services or Nursing careers to understand the sociological and psychological aspects of the families who will receive their services.  This program offers students an opportunity to understand the role of women in history, the contemporary
United States, and the world.


Minor in Women's Studies (15 units)

A.  Core Required Courses (6 units)

HIS 380.       Women in History (3)

SOC 334.      Women in Society (3)


B.  Select three courses from the following (9 units):

ENG 433.      Thematic Approaches to Literature (3) [I]

HIS 379.       The Family in History (3);  or

Any course on minority or immigrant history where the student concentrates on  the role of women;  or

Another history course with the consent of advisor.

HIS 395.       Special Topics in History (3)

IDS 320.       Interdisciplinary Topics in Human Studies (3)

POL 325.      Women and Politics (3)

SOC 320.      The Family  (3)

[I] = courses are infrequently offered


Additional courses offered from other disciplines may be substituted if course content involves women or the family.  Additional courses may only be applied if approval of an advisor is received prior to enrolling in the course.



1.   For frequency of courses listed in this program consult the department that offers the specific course of interest.

2.   Credit is given for ENG 433, HIS 395, and IDS 320 only when the course subject matter concentrates on women.

Course Offerings

Upper Division

WMS 494 Independent Study (1-3). 

Prerequisites:  Consent of instructor and program coordinator. 

Independent study of a particular problem, issue, or readings under the direction of a member of the Women's Studies faculty.  Course is not repeatable for credit in the Women's Studies minor.

WMS 495 Special Topics in Women's Studies (3). 

An intensive study of an issue or a concept in Women's Studies that is of particular interest to both the faculty member and the students.  Repeatable course with different topics.  Three hours of seminar per week.

WMS 496 Internship in Women's Studies (3). 

Practical application of coursework in Women's Studies through supervised work and field experience in politics, law, art, communications, social welfare agencies or other area as approved by the instructor and coordinator of the program.  Course is not repeatable for credit in the Women's Studies minor.