Portland Community College | Portland, Oregon

Course Number:
WS 201
Course Title:
Intercultural Women's Studies
Credit Hours:
Lecture Hours:
Lecture/Lab Hours:
Lab Hours:
Special Fee:

Course Description

Examines the position of women in society from a cross-cultural perspective. Includes the process of gender enculturation, women's lives in foraging, pastoral and agricultural societies and international issues such as female circumcision, infanticide, child brides and honor/dowry deaths. Recommend: WS 101. Prerequisites: WR 115, RD 115 and MTH 20 or equivalent placement test scores. Audit available.

Intended Outcomes for the course

Upon completion of the course students should be able to:

1. Apply critical thinking skills to the investigation of international issues related to women.
2. Analyze how cultural differences define variations in gender roles and use that analysis to develop sensitivity and empathy towards different cultures.
3. Apply service learning experience and self reflection to enhance community and environmental responsibility.
4. Apply written, oral and advocacy skills to analyze problems women face in different cultures and work towards their solutions.

Outcome Assessment Strategies

Student mastery of outcomes may be assessed by any combination of the following:

  1. written or oral examinations
  2. participation in class discussion, exercises, small group activities or role plays
  3. objective or essay examinations
  4. performances or plays
  5. oral or visual presentations
  6. participation in organizing community or professional events
  7. sevice learning activities

Course Content (Themes, Concepts, Issues and Skills)

  1. compare cross cultural gender roles
  2. examine international issues affecting women
  3. recognize ethnocentrism
  4. explore different ideas of body ownership and control
  5. develop writing, speaking and collaborative skills

Course Content: themes, concepts and issues
Instructors teaching WS 201 will focus on any combination of topics from the following list:

  • gender enculturation
  • gender enculturation theories and research
  • cultural relativism, ethnocentrism, acculturation
  • international feminism and human rights
  • roles of women in foraging, herding and agricultural societies
  • cross-cultural concepts of body ownership and control
  • female circumcision
  • dowry/honor deaths
  • female infanticide
  • child brides