Sophomore Seminars

Sexuality and Society

HUMBIO 79Q

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This course has space available. An application is not required for this seminar.

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This seminar will explore how sexual identity, attitudes, and behaviors are shaped by the messages sent by the various agents of society such as schools; family; peers; media; and religious, medical, and political institutions. We will dis­cuss the interaction of biology, psychology, and socio-cultural factors, such as gender roles and sexual/relationship scripts, as well as the intersection of sexuality and notions of love, romance, and commitment. We will examine critical develop­mental periods, such as adolescence and emerging adulthood, in depth. You will explore your own values and feelings about sexuality and come to an understanding of how these beliefs were formed. We will discuss how information about sexuality is disseminated in our society and what we can do to help ensure that such information is used in a way that promotes healthy self-conceptions, behavior, and relationships.

During Autumn Quarter 2020, this course will be conducted asynchronously, with optional weekly office hour discussions. Students will interact with each other through weekly discussion posts and responses: they will also engage in partnered discussions with classmates, as well as individuals outside of class of their choosing.

Meet the Instructor(s)

Lisa Medoff

Lisa Medoff holds a master's degree in counseling from the University of Pennsylvania and a Ph.D. in adolescent development from Stanford University. She teaches courses on adolescent development, adolescent sexuality, and adolescent mental health in the Program on Human Biology at Stanford. Dr. Medoff is also the Learning Specialist at the Stanford School of Medicine and works privately with adolescents with learning and/or mental health needs. Her books include the Stressed Out Students' Guide series and Resilience in the Classroom: Helping Students with Special Needs. Other than studying and working with adolescents, her favorite things are cats and theatre, especially the Oregon Shakespeare Festival.