Qualitative, case study methods were used to examine students' expectations of and experiences with studying women and leadership. Participants were 48 undergraduate students enrolled in an elective course titled Women and Leadership offered in the Leadership Studies minor curriculum at a liberal arts institution. Students perceived women and leadership as a sensitive subject fraught with potential struggles for learners, but were willing to engage in the subject in pursuit of both meaningful learning and their own utilitarian-oriented leadership development. Their experiences show the potential for transformative learning if the course content, structure, and learning environment are purposefully crafted to enable students to deal with anticipated or experienced struggles and engage in rather than resist the learning experience. The findings have implications for leadership curriculum design, course design, and pedagogy. Although this study focused on undergraduate learners in a traditional college classroom, the implications may also be relevant to a range of leadership educators and learners in various educational contexts both within and outside of academe.ale

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