Term: Syllabus-Winter 2004 

Class: Psy 310, Psychology of Women

Time: Wednesday 5:30 pm- 9:10 pm

Place: PSU Main Campus


Instructor:  L. McCabe

Office:  Cramer Hall 365, 361

Telephone: (503) 617-0869

Email: psu24883@pdx.edu, auto110346@yahoo.com

Web:  http://psych34.tripod.com

Office Hours:  After Class or By Appointment

Course Overview

This course addresses issues related to the Psychology of Women. This is an overview of the major theories and issues involved in understanding the impact of gender on thinking and behaving. We examine gender roles associated with being female, and view their impact on areas such as human development, health, relationships, work, and education.  In addition, while much of what is presented in class focuses on the USA/European cultural aspect of Psychology of Women, a multi-cultural approach will be taken. 


Personal Teaching Philosophy

My personal teaching philosophy may be different than what you as a student might expect, or have experienced. I think that what occurs in the classroom should be a learning experience that is based upon the foundation of what you learn within the text. For that reason I may choose to only cover part of a chapter as presented within the Lips text, and augment your learning experience with in class activities or other lecture items.

In addition, I feel that learning doesn’t stop when you leave the classroom. Modern technology allows us to explore this aspect of learning with greater depth. This is why I heavily emphasize the World Wide Web as a mean for exploring topics, and as a means of communication with the instructor (myself), as well as your fellow students.

Thus my philosophy can be summarized in the following sentences.

1. The classroom is more than a venue for lectures.

2. Learning does not end when one is out of the classroom.

University Policies


By enrolling in this class you agree to abide by Portland State University’s academic policies as well as their student codes of conduct.  If you would like a copy of these policies to review, either visit the course web page or I can provide one for you.


Given these University policies, and the level of the course, I work under the following assumptions:


1.  Every student in this course understands what constitutes plagiarism and/or cheating (for more information on what constitutes plagiarism, please see course web page).


A.  Use quotation marks or other formatting to show the reader that your writing is quoted.

B.  Cite the quotation and/or idea, including both date and author.

C.  Only use quotations to explain a point or provide an example.


2.  Every student understands classroom etiquette.


A.  Be attentive to those who are speaking, both the instructor and fellow classmates.

B.  Limit private conversation.  While a couple of people whispering may not be that disruptive, whispering tends to spread to other groups.

C.  Be on time, or quietly enter the room if one is late.


3.  That the classroom environment is one of respect towards the diversity of beliefs that exist.

            A.  Realize that you won’t agree with everything I present in this course.

            B.  Realize that you won’t agree with what others say in this course.

C.  Realize that while I may not agree with you, I respect your individual experience and value it in the classroom dynamic.

As college students, these assumptions can be seen at the very least as redundant with other classroom experiences.  However, some of the issues we discuss in this course are quite sensitive and/or controversial in nature.  Individuals may get upset with either the course material, or with fellow student’s beliefs.  In rare instances I, as the instructor, must enforce University policies.

These policies can be found at http://www.ess.pdx.edu/osa/policies-codes.htm  .  If a student is found to be in violation of these policies, I am authorized by the university to take certain courses of action based upon any given behavior.

The most common violation is that of plagiarism on the final group project. Plagiarism is completely unacceptable.  If an individual is caught plagiarizing their final project they will receive a score of a ‘zero’.  If you receive a zero for the final project, then that means that the highest score you can receive in the class is a D [barring any extra credit].

Course Policies

Read your syllabus carefully as it constitutes an agreement between you (the student) and myself (the instructor).  Occasionally, I have students that make comments about certain aspects of this course that were well described within the syllabus.

1.  This course has a somewhat heavy workload.  The standard rule, is that for every credit hour in class you spend a minimum of two to three hours outside of class studying.  That means that each week you should be spending 8-12 hours outside of class studying for this course.  Assignment load reflects this ratio.

2.  If you are here, but arrive too late to engage in a group activity or if you leave early, this counts the same as not attending class.

3.  All papers, except assignment #4 must be typed, and double-spaced.

4.  Your name should be placed on the very back of the last page of any assignment you turn in.  This helps eliminate bias in grading.

5.  It is common, especially with a long format course, for students to come talk to me with a variety of concerns during the break.  Sometimes, I will personally ask you to hold your questions until I myself take a short break.  I have had students take this personally, when I have asked them to wait.  Just like you, I too sometimes need to “collect” myself before engaging in another hour or so of teaching.

6.  If you have to miss class, it is unnecessary for you to call me.  Call a member of your group to see what you missed. If you are going to miss an exam, please call be prior to the class meeting of the following week.  As Mondays are very hectic, I may not be able to return any calls until Tuesday.

Required Materials

Text: The New Psychology of Women:  Gender, Culture, and Ethnicity (2nd Edition), by Hillary Lips

Access to the school computer lab

Optional Materials

Email account

Points Possible

Attendance                25

Assignment 1            25

Assignment 2            25

Assignment 3            25

Assignment 4            25

Assignment 5            25

Exam                         50

Final Project              100

Total                            300 points

Extra Credit

In addition to the total points offered in this class I will count an addition 25 points worth of extra credit. Usually I offer many ways for you to earn this "extra credit", but all extra credit opportunities will ONLY be posted on the course web page or mentioned in class.

Attendance Assignment (25 points)

Attendance is vitally important in this class. There are many things discussed in class that one cannot learn from the book.  Participation in group activities will be used as the method for obtaining attendance points.  You can receive 5 points per class, for a total of 25 points.  Group activities will be announced in class.


The Exam

The Exam is in multiple-choice format, is comprehensive, and consists of 50 questions.  You will need to bring a scantron for this exam.  As this is the only exam for the term, it will be very important for you to not miss this.  In case of emergency, I will allow you to make-up this exam up my leisure.  You may have to travel to the Main Portland State Campus to do this.

The Final Group Project

The Final Project is a take home group project and involves incorporating everything you learned in the course. It is worth 100 points.  The final project is comprised of two distinct parts, the poster presentation and the final 5-6 page paper. Individuals will be grade solely on their unique contribution to the group project.  Thus, if a member of your group fails to show up for the final poster presentation, you will NOT be graded down for it.   You will receive more information on this as the term progresses.

Policies for Late Assignments

As I clearly post the assignments WELL before they are due, I don't accept them. In case of documented emergency, I will accept them late contingent on you providing me official documentation (example doctor's note). In addition, I will grade these late assignments at my leisure. Late assignments will not have points deducted from them. YOU ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR DOWNLOADING the ASSIGNMENTS from the web page

In addition, there is more than sufficient extra credit available to cover a missed assignment.

Weeks in Detail

Week 1: The Week of January 5

Unit 1: Introduction to Psychology of Women (Chapter 1 and 2)

History, Research Methods etc.

Week 2: The week of January 11


Unit 2: Social Cognition and Women [Chapters 5 & 6]


Assignment 1: The Portrayal of Women in the Media [Due January 21, 2004]

Write a 2-2 ˝ page, typed double spaced paper on the portrayal of women in a specific movie or television show. The first section should summarize one to two key issues you are going to examine based upon information in the book. The second section should be a brief paragraph summarizing the TV show or movie. The third section should involve explaining how the movie or TV show relates back to the aforementioned issues in the first section.

Week 3/4: The Weeks of January 19, and January 26


Unit 3: Developmental Psychology & The Psychology of Women (Chapters 3, 4, & 11)


Assignment 2: Women's Developmental Issues on the WWW [Due January 28, 2004]

Write a 2-2 ˝ page, typed double spaced paper examining a web page that relates to developmental issues covered in this unit. The first section should summarize one to two key issues you are going to examine based upon information in the book or in class. The second section should be a brief paragraph summarizing the web page you have found. The third section should involve explaining how the web page relates back to the aforementioned issues in the first section. PLEASE INCLUDE A COPY OF THE WEB PAGE.


Week 5: The Week of February 2


Unit 4: Women, Work & Education (Chapter 8)

Assignment 3: Interviews, a paper of experience [Due January 11, 2004]

This assignment involves interviewing someone (example: business owner, educator, peer, family member) concerning four issues covered in this chapter.


Procedures involved in this assignment: 1) Come up with four questions pertinent to this unit. 2) Interview someone. 3) Write up the results.


The write up should be 2-2 ˝ pages, typed & SINGLE spaced. It should include all four questions, and summaries of the person's answers. In addition, you should include how this person is related to you. Finally, you should answer why is understanding people's personal experiences in regards to the material covered in this unit IMPORTANT.


Week 6: The Week of February 9


Unit 5: Women and Intimate Relationships (Chapters 7, 12)


Assignment 4: An informational brochure [Due February 18, 2004]


Create an informational brochure covering one of the topics covered in this unit. I will be assigning you the topic. It should be informative, but you can be creative.

Week 7: The week of February 16th

Unit 6: Women and Physical and Mental Health (Chapters 9 &10 )

Assignment 5: Women's Resources in the Portland Metro Community [Due February 25th, 2004]

Write a 2-2 ˝ page paper, typed and double space on women's resources in the community regarding the topic that assign you. This topic will relate back to something we cover within this unit (whether book or class lecture). The first section of the paper should briefly summarize the information presented on the topic. The second section of the paper should highlight the resources in the community that directly addresses the issue

Week 8:  The Week of February 23

The week is set asside for catch up on lectures.

Week 9: The Week of March 1

The week is set asside for catch up on lectures, and group meetings

Week 10: The Week of March 9

Final exam, and group meeting

Week 11: The Week of March 15

Group presentations

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)


1. When will you return our tests/assignments back to us?


Given the size of the class it takes a week minimum to correct all of them.


2. Can I do anything to make up lost attendance points?


This is what extra credit is for.


3. Can I do anything to make up low scores on the tests?


This is what extra credit is for.

4. Can I do anything to make up for missed activities?

This is what extra credit is for.

5. I don't know how to use the World Wide Web, or I don't have a computer...

There are several computers labs on campus with friendly staff. One rather large one is located on the ground floor of the PSU Library. If you need assistance in understanding how to access a web page, please ask the individual overseeing the computer lab. If you are still having difficulty come see me during my office hours.

6. What if I run into a problem accessing the web page?

CALL ME via my cell phone number.

7. Can I email you my assignments?

NO. I do not accept assignments via email.

8. Can I fax you my assignments?

NO. I do not accept assignments via fax.

9. Can I turn my assignments into your box in Cramer Hall 317?


YES, but they may not get to me on time. If you do get them in on time, I may not grade them with the others. In addition, if I start seeing that my box is inundated with papers of people not showing up to class, I reserve the right to axe this privilege.


10. Why won't you accept them via these methods?


So many alternatives for turning in assignments creates general havoc with even the most well organized individual. In addition, this also increases the probability that some how some way something will keep the assignment from getting into my hands. For example, the email file may be corrupted or the fax may print out in jibberish. The only way to make sure that the assignment is in my hands on time is to place it concretely in my hands during the time I collect them.


11. Oh yes, will I accept assignments via the Web Board other than the web participation assignment?


NO, for aforementioned reasons.

12. What if I go over the allotted pages for each assignment or Test?


I won't grade your assignment. While an additional paragraph or page may not seem that much to you, when all of you engage in the behavior it creates a significant amount of extra grading. Editing is a VERY important part of writing. If you are having problems editing down your papers, please visit the on campus writing center.


13. Is there any other available extra credit?

Sometimes I add assignments if I see something important in the media or for some other reason. However, I place a cap on how many points you can earn (see available points).