Overview of the Collection
Arrangement of Materials:
Scope and Contents
Overview of the Collection
Collection Title: Women's Studies Department Records
Women's Studies Department
Physical Description: 19.65 linear ft
Language of Materials:
Special Collections & University Archives
5500 Campanile Dr. MC 8050
San Diego, CA, 92182-8050
In 1969, students from SDSU's Women's Liberation Group, in cooperation with faculty and community women, formed an Ad Hoc
Committee for Women's Studies. The committee collected signatures from over 600 students in support of establishing a Women's
Studies Program at SDSU. In response, the university started an informal Women's Studies Program for the Spring 1970 semester.
By the start of the Fall 1970 semester, SDSU had formally established a department of Women's Studies which offered 11 courses.
It was the first such department in the United States.
Early instructors included students, faculty from several existing departments, and one full-time Women's Studies lecturer.
The Ad Hoc committee established a nineteen member Women's Studies board, which included ten students, three staff members,
and six faculty members, to oversee the program. In spring of 1974, the Faculty Advisory Committee undertook a nationwide
faculty recruitment campaign to develop women's studies as a strong academic department. The faculty developed an eighteen-unit
minor, which was approved by the University Senate in May 1975.
In 1983, the department first offered an undergraduate major in Women's Studies, in the College of Arts and Letters. Faculty
at that time consisted of one full professor, four associate professors, one assistant professor and one lecturer. Also during
the 1980s three Women's Studies faculty attained tenure, rendering the Faculty Advisory Committee unnecessary. The department
weathered budget crises in the 1990s and 2000s while continuing to grow and develop both in terms of size and reputation.
In 1996 the department first offered a Master's program in Women's Studies. In 2000, it began a program offering admission
into a 12-unit Certificate Program in Women's Studies through the College of Extended Studies.
SDSU's Women's Studies Department has developed a national and international reputation for excellence in its curriculum and
faculty. It maintains a strong commitment to excellence in teaching and research, and is taking a leadership role in university
affairs. In 2010 the department celebrated its 40th anniversary.
This collection is indexed under the following controlled access subject terms.
San Diego State University. Women's Studies Dept -- Archives
San Diego State University. Women's Studies Dept. -- History -- Sources
Genre/Form of Material:
Feminism -- Study and teaching (Higher) -- California -- San Diego -- History -- Sources
Women college students -- California -- San Diego -- History -- Sources
Women's studies -- California -- San Diego -- History -- Sources
2003, 2006, 2010
Collection was temporarily closed for reprocessing from Jan. - May 2009.
Conditions Governing Use:
The copyright interests in some of these materials have been transferred to or belong to San Diego State University. The nature
of historical archival and manuscript collections means that copyright status may be difficult or even impossible to determine.
Copyright resides with the creators of materials contained in the collection or their heirs. Requests for permission to publish
must be submitted to the Head of Special Collections, San Diego State University, Library and Information Access. Permissions
is given on behalf of Special Collections as the owner of the physical item and is not intended to include or imply permission
of the copyright holder(s), which must also be obtained in order to publish. Materials from our collections are made available
for use in research, teaching, and private study. The user must assume full responsibility for any use of the materials, including
but not limited to, infringement of copyright and publication rights of reproduced materials.
Conditions Governing Access:
This collection is open for research.
Identification of item, folder title, box number, Women's Studies Department Records, Special Collections and University Archives,
Library and Information Access, San Diego State University.
Center for Women's Studies and Services Records, 1947-1997 (MS-0036)
Bonnie Zimmerman Papers, 1966-2003 (MS-0329)
Kathleen B. Jones Papers, 1977-2003 (MS-0365)
Radical Ephemera and Underground Publications Collection, 1966-1983 (MS-0013)
Arrangement of Materials:
I. Administrative Files, 1970-2002
1.) Annual Reports & Self Studies, 1974-1990
2.) Department Office Files, 1970-2002
II. Curricular Files, 1972-2004
1.) Syllabi, 1972-2004
2.) Course Development Files, 1975-1990
3.) New Views on Women Records, 1977-2000
III. Organization & Event Files, 1966-1996
1.) Special Events and Women's Organizations, 1966-1996
2.) Workshop for Careers for Women in Science and Engineering, 1968-1982
IV. Multimedia Materials, 1975-2000
Scope and Contents
Women's Studies Department Records (1966-2006) document the growth and development of the first women's studies department in the nation, including its formation,
early relationship with the Center for Women's Studies and Services (CWSS), now named Center for Community Solutions, course
development, student work, and interactions between students and faculty with local, national, and international women's groups.
It includes annual reports, self studies, syllabi, correspondence, reports, budgets, minutes, newsletters, course development
materials, files from various events and organizations, and photographic slides. The collection consists of four major series:
Administrative Files (1970-2002),
Curricular Files (1972-2004),
Organization and Event Files (1966-1996), and
Multimedia Materials (1975-2000). The
Administrative Files have two sub-series:
Annual Reports and Self Studies and
Department Office Files. The
Curricular Files are filed in three sub-series:
Course Development Files, and
New Views on Women Records. The
Organization and Event Files are divided in two sub-series:
Special Events and Women's Organizations and
Workshop for Careers for Women in Science and Engineering Files.
Administrative Files (1970-2002) includes two subseries,
Annual Reports and Self Studies (1974-1990) and
Department Office Files (1970-2002). These files document the department's growth, development, and change over four decades. The bulk of materials
date from the mid- to late-1970s, 1980s, and 1990s. The
Annual Reports and Self Studies (1974-1990) consist of internal progress reports and studies completed every few years for the Divisions of Undergraduate
Studies and Graduate Affairs. The material is filed chronologically. The
Department Office Files (1970-2002) document the department's early formation, internal administration, development of the Women's Studies Major,
Minor, and Master's degrees, department chair actions, budget issues, and department committees. It includes the original
department proposal, notes from discussions about the department's formation, the Chair's correspondence, course records,
grade reports, minutes, and budgets, and is filed alphabetically by file name.
Curricular Files (1972-2004) include three subseries:
Course Development Files (1975-1990), and
New Views on Women Records (1977-2000). These files document the development of the women's studies curriculum and course content from the 1970s to
the present time. The
Syllabi (1972-2004) cover women's studies department courses, as well as a few courses relating to women's studies from other departments,
and a few women's studies courses taught at other universities. Researchers should be advised that classes were sometimes
offered under different course numbers in different semesters, while the same course numbers sometimes represent different
course titles in different semesters. The sub-series is filed by course number. The
Course Development Files (1975-1990), document changes to the curriculum and course offerings over the first twenty years of the department's existence.
It consists primarily of course proposals. The
New Views on Women Records (1977-2000) include correspondence, schedules, programs, and agendas from the New Views on Women lecture series. It is filed
chronologically. Because New Views on Women was originally offered as a course (Women's Studies 101), the earliest New Views
on Women materials are filed with the other syllabi in sub-series 1.
Organization and Events Files (1966-1996) include two subseries,
Special Event and Women's Organization Files (1966-1996), and the
Workshop for Careers for Women in Science and Engineering Files (1968-1982). These files document the Women's Studies Department's involvement with local, national, and international women's
organizations, as well as its participation in women's-related events both on campus off. The
Special Event and Women's Organization Files (1966-1996) include reports, correspondence, newsletters, and other records documenting the department's relationship with
the Center for Research on Women, National Institute of Education, Older Women's League, the Women's Coalition of San Diego
County, and several others, as well as various conferences and other events planned by the department in conjunction with
many of those groups. The
Workshop for Careers for Women in Science and Engineering Files (1968-1982) documents the growth and development of the Workshop, including the National Science Foundation's participation,
and includes brochures, budget information, correspondence, reports, programs, speaker lists, and many other files. Both
subseries are filed alphabetically.
Multimedia Materials (1975-2000) provides photographic and film documentation of the people, events, and scholarship which developed and grew
in the Women's Studies Department throughout its existence. It includes slides, photographs, and videotapes documenting lectures,
conferences, colloquia, panel discussions, campus rallies, and guest speakers.