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Professor Who Gave Students Offensive 'Female Or Shemale' Quiz Under Investigation By University

David Sorbello, an introductory to sociology course professor at State University Of New York College at Geneseo allegedly presented a "Female or Shemale" quiz to students.
 

The quiz asked students to look at a slideshow of women, some of them trans, and write down whether they had sex change operations or not. 

Several students, including Jillian Sternberg who took a photo of the slideshow for the quiz, were confused and offended by Sorbello’s impromptu test. 

Outrage over the quiz reached university President Denise A. Battles, who released a statement regarding the controversial classroom assignment.

"We are taking the matter very seriously and are gathering the facts to determine if and what action is warranted." 

Sternberg said that the “Female or Shemale” quiz was supposed to be used as a launching point into a discussion about sexual dimorphism, but Sorbello had admitted, when prompted, that it was partly because he found the test humorous. 

However, the lecture reportedly didn’t include any discussion of sexual dimorphism and Professor Sorbello allegedly jokingly warned students, “Be careful not to get too drunk or you’ll take the wrong one home” and made other comments as he cycled through the photos saying things like, “I’m definitely not going to the bar with you.” 

According to Sternberg, Sorbello never brought the quiz up and even addressed the fact that many of the students looked uncomfortable as they were taking it. She and a fellow student approached Sorbello after the quiz and asked what the point of the quiz was - he apologized that they didn’t find it funny and said that he believed the only way to discuss sexual dimorphism was by using humor. 

"He was very mad that we were calling him out," Sternberg said. She added that her initial approach to the professor was confrontational and apologized to him for that in a follow-up email where she reiterated that she found the material offensive. 

Jasmine Cui, a SUNY Geneseo student member of the campuses diversity group, tweeted an email sent from Sorbello after word got out about his quiz where he banned any use of electronics in his classroom. 

That includes laptops and tablets, as well as phones. Pre "Female or Shemale" quiz, students were reportedly allowed to snap photos of class slides to use for notes. 

Sternberg says that she’s very happy with the support she’s received from other students, but thinks that the growing number of fellow students and people online who are criticizing the uiniversity, and not Sorbello, are out of line. 

"That makes me really upset because I don't want it to be our reputation. I love my school," Sternberg said. 

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