Women's Studies 400
WGST 400: Senior Portfolio in Women's and Gender Studies
Prerequisites: Enrollment in WGST minor, WGST 200, completion of two electives toward the WGST minor, senior standing
Credit Hours: (1)
One credit-hour directed study with affiliated Women’s Studies faculty mentor. Serves as the required capstone experience for students minoring in Women’s Studies. Students will prepare a Senior Portfolio of work produced in previous courses and fully revised under the direction of the faculty mentor to demonstrate competence in one or more of the four learning outcomes for the Women’s Studies Minor. Students will prepare a public presentation of one of these examples of work. May not be taken if WMST was completed for a credit.
Detailed Description of Course
The readings required by each faculty mentor will vary, depending upon the learning outcome, if any, in which the student needs further study to revise work submitted to demonstrate competence in that outcome. The faculty mentor will frame the reading requirements and expectations for revision with the student, given the examples of work that the student selects for inclusion in the portfolio. In addition to the revised portfolio pieces, the student will write a self-reflection essay to assess how well each piece of work demonstrates mastery of one or more of the four learning outcomes for the Women’s Studies Minor and how pursuing the Minor has affected the student’s education and preparation for the future. The student will do multiple revisions of work so that it attains a professional level of writing. The student will be expected to prepare a public presentation of one piece of work included in the portfolio, at such events as the RU Undergraduate and Graduate Forum, a professional conference, or other appropriate venues as approved by the Director of Women’s Studies.
Detailed Description of Conduct of Course
Each student minoring in Women’s Studies will be assigned a mentor from Women’s Studies affiliated faculty members, who will be assigned by the Director of Women’s Studies in consultation with the student.
The student will meet with the faculty mentor to discuss the objectives of the Senior Portfolio and the kinds of previous work that the student might include in the portfolio, including but not limited to: analytic essays, research papers, multi-media or multi-modal presentations, exams questions, journal reflections or other writing, videos of creative performances, digitized photoraphs of art or design projects, collaborations with faculty members, poster presentations, or other forms of work submitted to previous courses.
The student will select pieces of work that have strong potential for demonstrating competence in each of the four learning outcomes for the Minor.
In consultation with the faculty mentor, the student will revise these pieces so that they achieve one or more of the learning outcomes more effectively or explicitly. Students will be expected to do multiple revisions, if necessary, to attain a professional level of writing or performance.
The student will then write a self-reflection essay that assesses how each piece chosen for the portfolio demonstrates mastery of one or more of the four learning outcomes for the Minor and how the Minor has affected the student’s education and preparation for the future.
The student will submit to the faculty mentor and the Director of Women’s Studies an electronic file of the Senior Portfolio that includes all the revised pieces selected because they demonstrate competence in one or more of the learning outcomes along with the self-reflection essay.
Student Goals and Objectives of the Course
Having completed this course, the student will demonstrate competence in each of the four learning outcomes for the Women’s Studies Minor, including the ability to:
1. Analyze how social attitudes toward race, class, gender, ethnicity, age, ability or sexual orientation affect individual women’s lives in global societies.
2. Explain one major contemporary issue that affects the lives of women globally. You might consider, for example, the global economy, the gendered pay gap, sexual harassment, access to health care and nutrition, body image, violence against women, environmental justice. You must discuss this issue in the context of at least two countries.
3. Apply the principles of feminist theory and analysis to content from at least two other disciplines.
4. Employ a variety of research methods, tools, and styles of inquiry to gather and organize information.
The Senior Portfolio and the public presentation of one example of work will constitute the assessment instruments for the course. The Senior Portfolio will be assessed according to: 1) the appropriateness of the examples of previous work selected by the student for inclusion in the portfolio to demonstrate competence in each of the four learning outcomes for the Minor; 2) the level of competence in each learning outcome that the portfolio, taken holistically, demonstrates; 3) the effectiveness of the revisions the student makes to each example of work so that it fully demonstrates competence in one or more of the learning outcomes; and 4) the analytic strength of the reflections that the student writes about each example of work to explain how it demonstrates competence in one or more of the learning outcomes. The public presentation of an example of work will be assessed according to: 1) the substantiveness of the content with relation to Women’s Studies issues; 2) the clarity of oral presentation; 3) the effectiveness of the presentation format, visual displays, or technology. Students will receive a letter grade from A-F in the course.
Other Course Information
Review and Approval
April 13, 2016
June 4, 2012