Gender studies is an interdisciplinary academic field that draws on feminist, gender, queer and intersectional theories and scholarship to analyze the experiences, perspectives, and contributions of women, men, and intersexed people and systems of gender relations in various cultural settings and time periods. The gender studies major is a multidisciplinary program that involves students in the exploration of topics such as the social construction and role of gender within various societies, women's historical and contemporary experiences, and the intersection of multiple social identities such as race, class, sexuality and ability with gender.
Completion of the major strengthens students' preparation for further work in fields including gender studies, women's studies, law, public and international affairs, social sciences, the humanities, communications, and the arts. Through the major, students also gain a foundation for understanding the social, intellectual, and political forces that shape international political, economic and social systems and their personal and professional lives. The major leads to a bachelor of arts degree.
Students majoring in gender studies must successfully complete nine courses, at least three of which must be at the 300 level, for a total of at least 30 credit hours, including:
- Introduction to Gender Studies. This requirement may be fulfilled in one of two ways:
- In exceptional cases and only with permission of the director of the Gender Studies Program, two entry-level courses in the gender studies curriculum in different areas (social sciences, humanities, or the sciences). Students who take this option must successfully complete ten courses for the major.
- GW 201 Feminist Theories and Methodologies . Prerequisite: GW 101 .
- At least one course from the gender studies curriculum, which includes the analysis of the intersection of gender and race. This category includes courses with a non-Western focus (e.g., "Issues of Gender in African Art," "Women in the Global Economy") as well as those that deal centrally with culturally diverse groups within the United States and elsewhere ( , , , , , , , ).
- Five additional courses in the gender studies curriculum. These courses must reflect the interdisciplinary nature of gender studies by drawing from at least three different disciplines. Students select their courses in consultation with their advisor so as to constitute both breadth and depth.
- GW 375 Senior Seminar In Gender Studies . Prerequisites: GW 101 and GW 201 .
WRITING REQUIREMENT IN THE MAJOR: From the foundational course (GW 101 ) through the capstone (GW 375 ), gender studies students are expected to write at a high level of proficiency. All Gender Studies majors will be required to complete , a writing enhanced course, as part of the fulfillment of the major. Upon completion of the gender studies writing requirement, students will be able to:
- write papers that demonstrate an understanding of proper grammar, syntax, punctuation, and usage;
- consistently apply relevant writing conventions to their written work, including: formulating informed questions; using gender studies concepts and theories; organizing papers clearly; and formatting citations and references correctly; and
- use evidence, interpretation, and theoretical analysis to support effective arguments.
While the successful completion of explicitly fulfills the writing requirement in Gender Studies, the Program expects significant writing competence in all gender studies courses.
See Gender Studies