Programs

Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies

What is a woman? Who decides who or what a woman is? What does it mean to be a woman today? What is feminism? How does gender structure our social, political, and economic world? How have people’s experiences of gender varied across time, space, and culture?

These are just some of the questions we ask in Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies, a highly interdisciplinary field of study that impacts everything we do at Cottey College.  Because Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies’ reach is so broad, it provides a strong complement to any major you choose.

One of the most unique features of Cottey’s Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies program is that it resides in a women’s college.  From Virginia Alice Cottey’s desire to educate women to be “knowledgeable, thinking, mature adults” to the College’s current mission to “educate…women to be contributing members of a global society through a challenging curriculum and a dynamic campus experience,” Cottey’s primary concern is women.  This commitment to women’s education is at the heart of Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies.

While the Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies program offers a wide range of courses, students learn about women in courses outside the Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies program, in co-curricular activities ranging from student organizations to suite life, and in interactions with the many feminist mentors they encounter on campus.  Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies, therefore, is at the heart of the college.

Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies courses focus on the historical and/or contemporary experiences of women, gender, or sexuality. Students in these courses will be expected to devote significant time to at least two of the following activities:

  • Analyzing the intersections of race, class, gender, and sexuality in people’s lives
  • Examining institutional structures and structures of power from the perspective of women, gender, or sexuality
  • Engaging with women, gender, and sexuality studies theory
  • Considering how a focus on women, gender, or sexuality impacts the academic discipline being studied
  • Linking course content about women, gender, or sexuality to their own experiences

Our course offerings include the following:

WGS/OLS 102 Foundations in Leadership
WGS 105 Introduction to Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies
WGS/ANT 151 Introduction to Cultural Anthropology
WGS 200 Introduction to LGBT Studies
WGS/SOC 203 Family and Society
WGS/ANT 204 Gender in Cross-Cultural Perspective
WGS/SPE 205 Gender and Communication
WGS/HIS 211 History of Women in the United States
WGS/FRE 215 Francophone Women in Translation
WGS/INR 216 Women, Power, and Politics
WGS/ENG 220 American Women Writers
WGS/ENG 222 British Women Writers
WGS/SOC 235 Race, Class, Gender, and Sexuality
WGS 240 Transnational Feminism
WGS/FLM 253 Women and Cinema
WGS 300 Women’s Health
WGS/ENG 310 Women in Shakespeare
WGS/ENG 321 Topics in Fiction: Eighteenth Century British Women Writers
WGS/PSY 321 Human Sexuality
WGS/ENG 324 On Location: British Women Writers at Home
WGS/HIS 330 Women’s Suffrage Movement
WGS/PSY 331 Psychology of Women and Gender
WGS/ENG 333 Topics in Poetry: “Her Kind”: Twentieth Century American Women Poets
WGS 350 Feminist Theories
WGS/IDS 360 Ecofeminism: Women, Animals, and Social Justice
WGS/ENG 364 Topics in Post-1900 Literature: “Make it New!” Women and Literary Modernism
WGS/ENG 371 Major Authors: Jane Austen
WGS/ENG 372 Major Authors: Toni Morrison
WGS/CRM 375 Violence Against Women
WGS 490 Senior Capstone

 

Students who pursue the major in Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies are required to complete a minimum of 42 credits in WGS courses by the time of graduation, with a minimum of 120 credits total. Students majoring in Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies must take WGS 105 before completing any upper-division coursework in the major. Students majoring in Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies are encouraged to participate in a study abroad program.

As an interdisciplinary field of study, students majoring in WGS are required to complete 18 additional hours outside of their WGS curriculum. This requirement ensures that all students majoring in WGS complete a minor or second major in an additional field of study. A significant portion of these additional credit hours may simultaneously count towards other degree requirements. Students are encouraged to discuss their degree plans with their major advisor to ensure efficient degree completion.

WGS Core Requirements (15 credits):

WGS 105   Introduction to Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies (3)
WGS 199   Internship (3)
WGS 350   Feminist Theories (3)
WGS 490   Senior Capstone
N/A*          Research Methods course (3)

*Students are required to take a methods course at Cottey College. Students are encouraged to select a methods course appropriate to their capstone research project interests.

Electives (nine WGS courses or WGS cross-listed courses, 27 credits):

  • At least two courses must be from the humanities/fine arts.
  • At least two courses must be from the social sciences/natural sciences.
  • At least one course must have a non-Western focus. [This requirement can be fulfilled simultaneously with one of the preceding two.]
  • No more than two electives can be taken below the 200 level, and at least three of the electives must be taken above the 200 level.
  • Up to three courses may be counted simultaneously for the WGS major and another major or minor.

Students who pursue a minor in Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies are required to complete 18 credits in WGS courses. Students are required to complete WGS 105 before enrolling in other upper-division WGS courses.

Two Core WGS Courses (6 credits):
WGS 105 Introduction to Women, Gender, & Sexuality Studies (3 credits)
WGS 350 Feminist Theories (3 credits)
Elective WGS Cross-Listed Courses (12 credits):
  • No more than one elective can be taken below the 200 level, and at least one of the electives must be taken above the 200 level.
  • No more than two courses may be taken from any one department.
  • Up to two courses may be counted simultaneously for the WGS minor and another major or minor.

Elizabeth Verklan
Coordinator of Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies
Assistant Professor of Women’s, Gender & Sexuality Studies
Rogers Fine Arts Building 210
(417) 667-8181, ext. 2197
everklan@cottey.edu


Rusalyn Andrews, Ph.D.

Professor of Theatre and Speech
Center for the Arts
(417) 667-8181, ext. 2241
randrews@cottey.edu

Angela Firkus, Ph.D.
Professor of History
Office: Grantham 216
(417) 667-8181, ext. 2201
afirkus@cottey.edu

Mary Mba, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of French
Grantham Hall 123
(417) 667-8181, ext. 2260
mmba@cottey.edu

Amber Morczek, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of Criminology
Roger Fine Arts Building 209
(417) 667-8181, ext. 2200
amorczek@cottey.edu

Kathryn Pivak, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of English
Alumnae 132
(417) 667-8181, ext. 2272
kpivak@cottey.edu

Oindrila Roy, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of International Relations
Rubie Burton Academic Center 125
(417) 667-8181, ext. 2229
oroy@cottey.edu

Trisha Stubblefield, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of English
Alumnae 134
(417) 667-8181, ext. 2274
tstubblefield@cottey.edu

Julie Tietz, Ph.D.
Professor of Psychology
Alumnae 139
(417) 667-8181, ext. 2220
jtietz@cottey.edu

Sarah Quick, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of Anthropology and Sociology
Rubie Burton Academic Center 124
(417) 667-8181, ext. 2269
squick@cottey.edu