Psychology of Women
Psychology 235- Section 001 [Code 2481]
Women and Gender Studies 235-Section 001 [Code 3006]
Mon. & Thurs. 11:10AM-12:25PM
Room 603 HW
These are not W (intensive writing) sections
Professor: Darlene C. DeFour, Ph.D.
Office: 738C HN
Office Hours: Monday and Thursday, [10:00 -10:50 AM], and by appointment.
Telephone: 212 772-5679
Website: Blackboard (You must enter via the CUNY portal.)
My mailbox is located in the Department of Psychology Office (Room 611HN).
Prerequisites for Psych 235 and WGS 235: 6cr in Psych courses including Intro to
Required Textbooks: Matlin, Margaret W. (2008). The Psychology of Women.
Belmont, CA: Thomson-Wadworth Publisher). (6th Edition) (M)
(Electronic versions of the book may be purchased via
The book can be purchased at the Hunter College bookstore.
Additional readings will be assigned.
The goal of the course is to help you acquire knowledge of the vocabulary, concepts,
and methods that psychologists use to describe and explain phenomena which are
especially relevant to the lives of women and girls. Additional objectives are for you to
become critical thinkers and discerning consumers of gender related research.
In this course, we will explore current research and theory in the psychology of women.
Particular attention will be paid to how age, ethnicity, and social class and (and other
dimensions of diversity) influence these processes. We will use lectures, discussions,
and group activities in order to learn about the most current issues in the field (e.g.,
health, sexual harassment; work).
Reading: You are responsible for reading the assigned chapters in the texts before
coming to class. There will not be a one-to-one correspondence between what is
covered in class and the textbooks. If there is something in the textbook which
you do not understand and it is not covered in class, you are responsible for
asking about it in class. Additional reading may be posted on the class website.
Exams: There will be four examinations. Three exams will be given during the
semester. An optional final will also be given during the final exam period. Your three
highest scores will be counted. If you are satisfied with your exam scores during the
semester you do not have to take the final. These examinations will be based on
chapters in the texts as well as class discussions and additional readings. Exams will
primarily consist of multiple- choice, matching, true/false, and fill in the blank items.
There may be one or two essay items. The three exams given during the semester will
NOT be cumulative. The final exam will be cumulative. There will be NO MAKE-UP
EXAMS, if you miss an exam that will be considered the exam that you drop. Please
be on time. If you arrive more than fifteen minutes after the scheduled start of the
exam (11:25 PM); you will not be allowed to take the exam. If you live far away, leave
home earlier on exam days. Bring a sharp #2 pencil with an eraser to all exams. No
pencils, sharpeners, or erasers will be provided. You must submit the exam with
your answer sheet. In order to receive credit for any exam, you MUST turn back in the
All exams are closed book and you MAY NOT use any notes, dictionaries, or
translating devices. No electronic devices may be on (cell phones, palm pilots,
etc.). Once you leave the exam, you may not re-enter the room.
We will not review exams in class. If you would like to go over your exam, first download
the answer key; bring the answer key to my office during my hours to review your exam.
Quizzes: To ensure (1) attendance, and (2) that students are reading the assigned
material, unannounced quizzes may also be given. You will be responsible for providing
the paper for the quizzes. They may also be administered using the clicker system. NO
quizzes can be made up. These quizzes can be given at any time during the class. On
some days more than one will be given.
Short Activities/Collaborative Learning Groups: Research on learning indicates that
people learn best by doing. During the semester we will conduct in class assignments.
The purpose of these assignments will be to allow you to experience the psychology of
women. You may be asked to download and print forms and bring them to class in order
to complete assignment.
“Curve Busters”: (Aronson, 1987): Students will also be able to improve their grades
by answering extra credit questions. I will not announce these. They will be posted on
Blackboard and will sometimes take place in class. These questions will be multiple-
choice, fill-in-the-black, etc. These questions will allow you to improve your grade but
will not hurt your grade. If I do them in class I will say “this is a curve buster.” These are
optional but they can really help improve ones grade.
Curve busters that are posted Blackboard will be there for a limited time. If you miss it
you will not have the opportunity to make it up. Don’t ask. Remember these are
Class Website: You can access the course website by going to http://www.cuny.edu.
From there you will go to BB8. You must have a CUNY portal ID to access the site. The
class syllabus will be posted on the course website. Additional readings,
announcements, messages etc. will also be posted throughout the semester. Any
changes to schedule will be posted there. You should check the BB site and your
Hunter College e-mail regularly. If you do not have your own computer at home,
computers are available in the library and labs all over campus.
Email Policy: The best way to reach me is via email. I will answer emails on Monday
and Thursday. Before you email me, make sure that the answer to your question
is not on the syllabus or posted on Blackboard.
To determine your grade in the course, I will add up the total number of points you have
obtained in the course.
Test 1 110*
Test 2 110*
Test 3 110*
Final Exam 110*
Point Totals and Grades
A+ 370.50 and above C+ 294.50 - 303.62
A 351.5 - 370.12 C 266.00 - 294.12
A- 342.00 - 351.12 D 228.00 - 265.62
B+ 332.50 - 341.62 F 0- 227.62
B 313.50 - 332.12
B- 304.00 - 313.12
No incompletes will be given. If you decide to take the CR/NCR option you must do
so before taking the final exam. Hunter has rules for taking the CR/NCR option:
~ you are not allowed to take the class “credit/no credit” if you are currently on
~ you must bring the appropriate form (check out the Welcome Center or the
OASIS) for me to sign,
~ I must sign it BEFORE you take the final exam,
~ you must take the final exam,
~ you must have completed all other course requirements.
Course Ground Rules [Other Procedural Matters]
01. An integral part of the course will be in-class exercises. You must be present to
participate. If you miss a class please be sure to get the course notes from
someone in the class. Please do not email me to ask what you missed. Class
notes will not be posted online.
02. You are responsible for making sure that you sign the official attendance sheet or
are in class when attendance is taken via the clicker system or quizzes.
03. Come to class on time and do not leave early. Late arrivals and early departures are
04. Please turn off all cellular phones, beepers etc.
05. Read assigned chapters before class.
06. All assignments and exams are mandatory for everyone; including graduating
07. We will discuss controversial topics. A number of these topics may be painful for
some members of the class. We must treat each other with mutual respect.
08. Only email from your Hunter College email address will be read. When
you send an email, be sure to indicate which course you are in and the
section (Psychology 235 or Women and Gender Studies 235 Section 001 or
Section 003). Put this in the subject line.
09. Again, even though I may not be able to lecture on all the material in class, you will
be responsible for ALL of the material covered in the reading assignments. Additional
required readings may be assigned during the semester and will be available on
Blackboard or on reserve in the library.
10. There may be some minor changes to the schedule or assigned readings. Changes
will be announced in class and posted on Blackboard.
“Hunter College regards acts of academic dishonesty (e.g., plagiarism, cheating n
examinations, obtaining unfair advantage, and falsification of records and official
documents) as serious offenses against the values of intellectual honesty. The College
is committed to enforcing the CUNY Policy on Academic Integrity and will pursue cases
of academic dishonesty according to the Hunter College Academic Integrity
From the Office of AccessABILITY In compliance with the American Disability Act
of 1990 (ADA) and with Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, Hunter
College is committed to ensuring educational parity and accommodations for all
students with documented disabilities and/or medical conditions. It is
recommended that all students with documented disabilities (emotional, medical,
physical, and/or learning) consult the Office of AccessABILITY located in Room
E1124 to secure necessary academic accommodations. For further information
and assistance, please call (212-772-4857) / TTY (212-650-3230).
Tentative Class Schedule
Thu. 08/26 Introduction to the Course, Key concepts
Matlin Chapter 1 and pp. 489-491;
Shields, S. A. (2008). Gender: An
intersectional perspective. Sex Roles 59,
Mon. 08/30 Key concepts continued, Gender fair and
feminist research methods
Analysis of bias in psychological research
Matlin, Chapter 1 , (McIntosh Unpacking
Denmark, Russo, Frieze, and Sechzer
(1988) (On the Blackboard site under
Thu. 09/02 Gender fair and feminist research methods
Gender stereotypes, Matlin Chapter 2
Mon. 09/06 LABOR DAY – No Classes
Thu. 09/09 ROSH HASHAHAH No Classes
Mon. 09/13 Gender stereotypes, Matlin Chapter 2;
Thu. 09/16 Infancy and Childhood - Gender
Development; Matlin Chapter 3:
Fausto-Sterling, A, (2000) The five sexes
revisited. Science. 40(3), 19-23. (On the
Blackboard site under “links.”)
Mon. 09/20 Infancy and Childhood; Matlin Chapter 3
Thu. 09/23 Infancy and Childhood - Gender
Development; Matlin Chapter 3
Mon. 09/27 Exam 1 (Chapters 1, 2, 3, class notes
and A & HC Chapters
Thu. 09/30 Cognitive Abilities and Achievement;
Matlin Chapter 5; pp.128-135);
Mon. 10/04 Cognitive Abilities and Achievement;
Matlin Chapter 5; pp.128 -135;)
Thu. 10/07 Women and Work; Matlin Chap. 7 and pp.
Mon 10/11 (No classes) Columbus Day
Thu 10/14 Women and Work; Matlin Chap. 7 and pp.
Mon. 10/18 Love Relationships; Matlin Chapter 8,
Thu. 10/21 Sexuality; Matlin Chapter 9
Mon. 10/25 Sexuality; Matlin Chapter 9
Thu. 10/28 Exam 2 (Chapters 5, 7, 8 & 9 and
Mon. 11/01 Women and Physical Health, Matlin Chap.
Thu. 11/04 Women and Physical Health, Matlin Chap.
Mon. 11/08 Women and Physical Health, Matlin Chap.
Thu. 11/11 Women & Psychological Disorders; Matlin
Chap. 12 and pp. 343-345.
Mon. 11/15 Women & Psychological Disorders; Matlin
Chap. 12 and pp. 343-345
Thu. 11/18 Women & Psychological Disorders; Matlin
Chap. 12 and pp. 343-345
Mon. 11/22 Violence Against Women Matlin Chap. 13
Thu. 11/25 No classes- NO CLASSES
Mon 11/29 Violence Against Women Matlin Chap. 13
Thu. 12/02 Violence Against Women Matlin Chap. 13
Mon 12/06 Women and Older Adulthood; Chap. 14
Thu. 12/09 Moving Forward; Matlin Chap 15,
Mon. 12/13 Exam 3 (Chapters 11, 12, 13 & 14,15;
and additional readings)
Final Exam: Monday December 20, 2010 11:30-1:30 PM (On all chapters & class