The Women’s Studies track in our Interdisciplinary Studies Program is designed for students who wish to enrich their study of any academic discipline with an understanding of the ways in which gender affects the organization, methodology, premises, and practices of that discipline. Thus, Women’s Studies students bring a more informed perspective to scholarship and career and function more effectively in all areas of life through heightened awareness of the generally hidden interconnections of gender and power.
Women’s Studies is based on the conviction that gender, the meaning we give to bodily differences between the sexes, is one of the fundamental ways that human beings conceptualize and order the world. Although sexual difference is usually assumed to be a given, its meaning and effect are actually fashioned in and through social and cultural beliefs, institutions, and activities. Hence, gender is not universal but subject to historical change. Because of its fundamental nature, gender is also a way of signifying and articulating relationships of power.
To ensure a gender-informed interdisciplinary perspective, the Women’s Studies track, which leads to a B.A. degree, offers a coordinated major and requires the following:
- Fulfill the requirements of a disciplinary major
- Complete 24 credits of Women’s Studies courses (WMS designations), not to include credits counting toward the disciplinary major. Courses should include:
- WMS 148 Women, Gender and Power (3 credits) as the methodology course
- 18 additional credits of WMS designated courses
- A 3-credit WMS seminar or independent study (WMS 385) directed by a member of the Women’s Studies faculty and taken in the senior year. This will include a final project of an interdisciplinary nature that fulfills three of the four Women’s Studies Program objectives.
The Women’s Studies minor requires 18 credits in Women’s Studies courses (WMS designations). It must include WMS 148 Women, Gender and Power and 15 additional credits not to include those used to fulfill the disciplinary major or minor.