College of Social Sciences
Social Sciences 722
2424 Maile Way
Honolulu, HI 96822
Tel: (808) 956-7464
Fax: (808) 956-9616
T. Arambula Greenfield, EdD (Director)-science and education
S. Charusheela, PhD-economics
*M. Chesney-Lind, PhD-criminology
*R. Dawson, PhD-women and literature
*K. Ferguson, PhD-feminist theory
S. Hippensteele, PhD-psychology
M. Koikari, PhD-gender across cultures
J. Burk, PhD-drama
D. Ladd, PhD-history
L. Ruch, PhD-sociology
V. Wayne, PhD-English
M. B. Yue, PhD-East Asian languages and literatures
Degree and Certificates Offered: BA in liberal studies (women's studies), Undergraduate Certificate in Women's Studies, Graduate Certificate in Women's Studies
The Academic Program
Women's studies (WS) is an interdisciplinary program that examines women in society, culture, science, and history, as individuals and groups, with bodies and minds. With a faculty trained in a variety of fields of study, the program examines the role of gender in shaping history, psychology, anthropology, economics, sociology, political theory, literature, art, drama, education, law, medicine, and biology. It offers students an encounter with the important questions feminist research raises.
In order to analyze the construction of gender and the complexity of women's lives, the curriculum is divided into the following four clusters of related courses:
1. "Words and Images" considers how women have been represented and how women have represented themselves in philosophy, literature, art, language, etc.;
2. "Mind and Bodies" examines sex as a biological category and gender as a social category, looking at reproduction, health, and personality, as well as rape and violence against women;
3. "Roles and Institutions" connects the experiences of individual women to the operations of larger social institutions, including marriage, politics, work, education, and religion; and
4. "Gender Across Cultures" studies the similarities and differences among women across racial, economic, ethnic, and regional lines. A cross-cultural perspective is central to other areas as well, but it is so crucial to women's studies that it requires a separate emphasis.
Women and men from all colleges at the Manoa campus take women's studies courses because of its interdisciplinary nature and its ties to other fields of study. Five WS courses meet the General Education Core requirements; many others are cross-listed with other departments. Women's studies offers a flexible major through the Liberal Studies Program, allowing students to pursue either a specialized or a general course of study. Women's studies is a uniquely promising avenue of self-understanding, as well as a means of connecting research on women to other academic interests. Those who understand the workings of gender in personal lives and social order can better pursue a variety of careers. The women's studies program at the
Manoa campus offers a unique opportunity to study similarities and differences-racial, economic, ethnic, and regional-among women here and around the world, past, present, and future.
Students who are pursuing a general course of study through the Liberal Studies Program meet with the program director for advising. Those students who are studying specific areas of women's studies are matched with professors who are experts in the students' areas of interest. The professors advise the students about major requirements and the best combination of classes for the students to take, given their interests.
Interested students should refer to the "Liberal Studies" section within the Colleges of Arts and Sciences, or consult with the Liberal Studies Program, Bachman Annex 13-9, (808) 956-7297.
Certificate in Women's Studies
Students earning a women's studies certificate (the equivalent of a minor) broaden their knowledge of the field by taking a structured array of courses drawn from the key components of women's studies. Students must complete 15 credits in women's studies by taking one course each from three of the four subfields offered in the women's studies curriculum. The two remaining courses needed for the certificate may be WS 151, WS 405, or courses chosen from any of the
Women's Studies offers a Graduate Certificate in Advanced Women's Studies (AdWS Certificate). This certificate program provides a rigorous, integrated and relevant educational experience for students whose education and career objectives will be enhanced through creative and scholarly feminist analysis of women's lives and visions. The program guides students to: examine the factors that affect the status of women across cultures and through time; analyze theories and assumptions about women in various disciplines; contribute to the reformulation of social knowledge; explore institutionalizing social change that highlights and supports the achievements of women locally and internationally; and understand the usefulness of gender as an analytical tool in many fields.
Graduate studies leading to the AdWS Certificate are focused in four broad areas under the general rubric of gender studies.
- Feminist methods of inquiry and theoretical analysis. Students will explore sex/gender as an analytical category asking what this category means, what purposes are served by the prevailing binary notions of gender, and how gender is constituted in past, current, and future social, biological, cultural, and economic contexts.
- Feminist knowledge. Students will learn about the pervasive impact of gender relations on thoughts, actions, and prevailing constructions of reality. They also will become acquainted with an array of feminist theories and arguments about such issues as political action, reproduction, and sexual orientation.
- Sex/gender and social-political categories of power and privilege. Students will examine the interaction of sex/gender with race/ethnicity, class, sexuality, and other primary vectors of power and privilege as relevant to nearly all domains of human experience. They will have opportunities to explore the dynamics of these interactions with emphasis on the evolving multicultural milieu of Hawai'i and the Asia/Pacific region.
- Sources of sex/gender differences. Students will examine both the empirical and philosophical debates concerning sameness and difference as these relate to the topic of gender. Sources of gender/sex differences as well as the significance of these also will be considered.
Recipients of the AdWS Certificate must be classified graduate students, and normally will be pursuing graduate degrees in other academic departments. The AdWS Certificate will help students learn to apply feminist methodologies, analysis and problem-solving to their other academic fields, and to integrate the rigors of the scholarship on gender into their chosen professions as a means of enhancing their professional lives and
opportunities for advancement.
A brochure listing research interests and publications of the members of the Women's Studies graduate faculty, as well as describing admissions and program requirements, is available on request from the program; this information also is available on the Word Wide Web (www2.soc.hawaii.edu). The following sections summarize the admissions and program requirements, but the program brochure should be consulted for complete details.
Students are admitted to the AdWS Certificate program only in the fall semester. Applicants to the AdWS Certificate Program must be classified graduate students at the University of Hawai'i. Candidates are required to submit their current and complete transcripts, three letters of recommendation, and the names of and full contact information for three additional references. Applicants also must submit a 4-5 page essay outlining their personal and professional goals as they relate to the AdWS Certificate program, and identifying potential research and/or community involvement projects they may wish to pursue as part of their AdWS Certificate work
The AdWS Certificate program consists of a minimum of 18 credits, at least 12 of which must be at the 600 level or higher. Eight of these credits must come from the following four women's studies courses: WS 610 (1 cr), Faculty Seminar Series; WS 613 (3 cr), Feminist Research and Methods of Inquiry; WS 615 (3 cr), Interdisciplinary Feminist Theory; WS 650 (2 cr), Research in Feminist Studies: Capstone Experience.
Remaining credits will be drawn from a list of courses approved by the Women's Studies graduate adviser. All students will work with a specific adviser to develop an AdWS Certificate curriculum based on their academic majors that best supports their academic and professional goals and objectives. Up to 6 credits towards the certificate may be taken in the student's home department provided that that department's curriculum includes courses approved by Women's Studies.
Each student enrolled in the AdWS Certificate program will design, develop, and complete a research and/or community involvement project to culminate in a publishable-quality work or comparable product, and a professional quality seminar presentation given in the student's final semester of the program.