Penn State Penn State: College of the Liberal Arts
Jill Wood

Jill Wood

Teaching Professor of Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies
315 Willard Building
(814) 865-5708

Professional Bio

Dr. Wood is a Teaching Professor of Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies with her PhD in Biobehavioral Health and Women's Studies. Her research critiques the (bio)medicalization of women's health (specifically menstruation, pregnancy and childbirth, and the menopausal transition) and women's sexualities (particularly sexual desire and sexual response models).  In the area of reproductive justice, Dr. Wood examines the coercive use of contraceptive methods like LARCs (long-acting reversible contraceptives) as a state sanctioned form of social control among vulnerable populations. Similarly, Wood’s work on birth justice discusses how risk medicine and fetal rights discourse contributes to the surveillance and disembodiment of pregnant individuals.

Professor Wood also teaches and publishes in the area of feminist pedagogy, using critical race theory and anti-racist education to inform her intersectional feminist approach to education as the practice of freedom.   The recipient of the prestigious George W. Atherton Award for Excellence in Teaching in 2020, Wood incorporates a trauma-informed approach to her pedagogy to create brave learning spaces for students and educators to authentically learn together.  Wood’s recent publications include: “(In)Visible Bleeding: The Menstrual Concealment Imperative” in The Palgrave Handbook of Critical Menstruation Studies(2020); “Teaching Students at the Margins: A Feminist Trauma-Informed Care Pedagogy” in Lessons from the Pandemic: Trauma-Informed Approaches to College, Crisis, Change (2022); “The Medical Management of Pregnancy” in Women’s Health: Understanding Issues (2022); and “Pregnancy Self-Help Literature as Disembodiment: An Issue of Reproductive Justice” in The Palgrave Handbook of Reproductive Justice and Literature (2022).

Professor Wood typically teaches: WMNST 100, 452, 458, 492W, and 509.  She is a member of the University’s Committee to Address Sexual and Relationship Violence (CARSV) and a Title IX complainant advisor to support students who have experienced sexual, relationship, or racial violence.

Dr. Wood was selected as the recipient of the prestigious Barash Award for Human Service as the University member who contributed the most in 2023 to human causes, public service activities and organizations, and the welfare of fellow humans on campus and in the community.