Gender Studies (BA)

The Gender Studies major explores how gender and sexuality influence constructions of human identity historically and culturally, and how these in turn shape human development, behavior, and the processes of justice. Students in the major will learn to examine gender and sexuality from a broad variety of academic perspectives. As such, they become versatile thinkers with strong skills in critical problem solving, research, data collection, and writing. The Gender Studies major has been designed in the best tradition of liberal arts study: courses are structured to support independent inquiry, ethical reflection, and critical thought, and they culminate in a final research project that enables students to test their skills on a question of their own choosing. Students graduating with a BA in Gender Studies go on to a wide variety of careers and post–graduate study, including the arts, business, education, health care, media, politics, law, public policy and social work.

Learning outcomes. Students will: 

  • Identify assumptions about gender and sexuality and how they influence constructions of human identity in historical, cultural, and geographic contexts. 
  • Write arguments that examine the interrelationships between gender and sexuality and other identity categories, such as race, class, nationality, age, and abilities. 
  • Recognize major topics and methodological approaches in gender studies. 
  • Utilize accepted methods of gender studies research to investigate topics in the field. 
  • Connect scholarly inquiry on gender and sexuality to theories of social justice and activism.
Credits Required
Gender Studies Major 36
General Education 42
Electives 42
Total Credits Required for B.A. Degree 120

Coordinator. Professor Olivera Jokić, English Department, (212.237.8566, ) 

Advising resources. Gender Studies Major Advising ResourcesMajor Checklist

Honors Option. To receive Honors in the Gender Studies major, a student must complete a 3-credit research project-based independent study prior to taking the senior seminar while achieving a 3.5 grade point average in their major courses (above the 100-level) and an overall GPA of at least a 3.2.  Eligible students may enroll in the Honors Option as upper juniors (having accumulated at least 75 to 90 credits) by meeting with the Gender Studies Coordinator. 

Additional information. Students who enrolled for the first time at the College or who changed to this major in September 2016 or thereafter must complete the major in the form presented here. Students who enrolled prior to the date may choose either the form shown here or the earlier version of the major. A copy of the earlier version may be obtained in the Undergraduate Bulletin 2015-16.

Part One. Historical and Theoretical Foundations
GEN 101 Introduction to Gender Studies
ISP 145 Why Gender Matters
GEN 205 Gender and Justice
GEN 255 /BIO 255 Biology of Gender & Sexuality
GEN 364 /HIS 364 History of Gender and Sexuality: Prehistory to 1650
Advisors recommendation. GEN 255 / BIO 255 has a prerequisite of SCI 110 or SCI 112 or SCI 114 (or any STEM variant science course of at least three-credits such as BIO 102 or BIO 103 or BIO 104 or CHE 102 or CHE 103 or CHE 104). These science courses satisfy the Required Core: Life and Physical Science category of the Gen Ed program. Transfer students can use any science course that satisfies this Gen Ed area as the prerequisite for GEN 255/BIO 255.
Subtotal: 12
Part Two. Critical Methods
GEN 333 /PHI 333 Theories of Gender and Sexuality 3
Subtotal: 3
Part Three. Research Methods
GEN 350 Feminist and Critical Methodologies 3
Subtotal: 3
Part Four. Senior Seminar
GEN 401 Senior Seminar in Gender Studies 3
Subtotal: 3

Part Five. Gender Studies Area Electives

Students select five electives from Gender Studies-designated courses and may substitute a semester-long internship in a gender-related field or an approved Independent Study with a GS faculty (GEN 389 or GEN 489) for one elective. To ensure that students are exposed to significant and significantly different approaches to thinking about gender and sexuality, students must take at least two courses in each of the following two categories:

Category A. Diversities and Cultural Representations of Genders and Sexualities

These courses focus on non–dominant U.S. constructions of gender and sexuality internationally and among diverse communities and cultures in the United States. Some of these courses focus on the study of art, media, literature, cultural production both as sites of theoretical and political work about gender and sexuality and as sources of the construction and representation of gendered/sexed identities.  

Choose at least two
AFR 248 Men: Masculinities in the United States 3
ANT 210 /PSY 210 Sex and Culture 3
ART 222 Body Politics 3
ART 224 /AFR 224 African American Women in Art 3
COR 320 Race, Class and Gender in a Correctional Context 3
DRA 243 Black Female Sexuality in Film 3
DRA 245 Women in Theatre 3
ENG 346 Feminist Rhetorics: Histories, Intersections, Challenges 3
GEN 356 /HIS 356 Sexuality, Gender, and Culture in Muslim Societies 3
GEN 380 Selected Topics in Gender Studies 3
HIS 265 /LLS 265 Class, Race and Family in Latin American History 3
HIS 270 Marriage in Medieval Europe 3
HIS 323 History of Lynching and Collective Violence 3
HIS 375 Female Felons in the Premodern World 3
ISP 334 Sex, Gender and Justice in Global Perspective 3
LIT 316 Gender and Identity in Literary Traditions 3
LLS 255 Latin American Woman in Global Society 3
SOC 243 Sociology of Sexualities 3

Category B. Socio-Political and Economic Systems and Gender and Sexuality

These courses address the construction of gender and sexuality within the legal, economic and social structures of our society. They look at the very pragmatic ways that societies both reinforce and undermine gender and sexuality through their policies and social practices. Courses that satisfy this requirement will investigate historical or contemporary gender and sexuality within law, sociology, economics, government, criminology and psychology.

Choose at least two
CRJ 420 /SOC 420 Women and Crime 3
CSL 260 Gender & Work Life 3
ECO 327 The Political Economy of Gender 3
GEN 277 Introduction to Feminist Praxis 3
GEN 377 Feminist Praxis: Internship 3
POL 237 Gender and Politics 3
POL 318 The Law and Politics of LGBTQ Rights 3
POL 319 Gender and Law 3
PSC 235 Women in Policing 3
PSY 333 Psychology of Gender 3
SOC 215 Women and Social Control in the U.S. 3
SOC 333 Gender Issues in International Criminal Justice 3
Students should consult with the Gender Studies Major Coordinator to ensure adequate coverage. 3
In addition to the regularly offered electives listed above, a number of unique electives that count toward the major will be offered each semester. The Director of the Gender Studies Program will compile a list each semester and distribute it to Gender Studies majors and minors. 3
Subtotal: 15