Western Washington University's Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies program draws on interdisciplinary research and teaching to analyze the formation of sex, gender, and sexuality as they intersect with race, class, ethnicity, nationality, religion, age, and ability.
Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies is committed to the project of social justice. We examine and challenge systems of oppression, inequality, and privilege from a variety of perspectives. Our program encourages theory and praxis that critically considers global and local communities in efforts to revise, re-envision, and reimagine social change.
The curriculum provides students with skills to critically and actively engage with the world around them. Many of our courses connect academia to the material world by investigating the relationship between theory and practice - a central commitment of much feminist, gender, and queer scholarship. Our courses are characterized by rigorous and sustained critical thinking, inquiry, and analysis: skills central to the task of pursuing equality and justice.
Why Consider a Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies Minor?
Drawing on the rich pool of academic expertise at Western, the program emphasizes theories and practices derived from feminist, queer, postcolonial, multiracial, and multicultural contexts. Our curriculum emphasizes scholarly engagement with a wide range of disciplines, including: history, fine and performing art, literature, creative writing, political science, communication studies, health and human development, language and linguistics, anthropology, sociology, psychology, environmental studies, visual culture, journalism, education, and science.
The Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies Minor enhances any major and adds a valuable aspect to one's training for the professional world. Our graduates go on to careers in both traditional and non-traditional career fields. Recent graduates have gone on to law school, graduate school in many fields, public service and private sector careers, medicine, business, political leadership positions, community organizing, and teaching in both K-12 and higher education.
Students enjoy small class sizes and close faculty interaction. Our community is intellectually challenging, supportive, and creative. Our diverse faculty encourages scholarship that is interdisciplinary and intersectional.
Choose two courses from:
- WGSS 211 Introduction to Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies
- WGSS 212 Feminist Theory and Expression
- WGSS 213 Introduction to Queer and Sexuality Studies
- WGSS 350 Feminist and Queer Methodologies
or a comparable methods course in another program under advisement
10 credits of 300 or 400 level coursework in WGSS program (electives from other programs may be substituted with advisement)
Each academic year, the WGSS office will compile an advisory list of all courses with a women, gender, and sexuality studies focus. Please email Vicki.Hsueh@wwu.edu for more information.
If you signed up for the WGSS minor before 2018, the WGSS 411 requirement can now be fulfilled with WGSS 450: Capstone Seminar
How to Declare
Students, if you would like to declare the WGSS minor, please use the following e-form and submit to the WGSS dept email (firstname.lastname@example.org): minor declaration form If you have questions about the minor (or major), please contact:
WGSS Program Coordinator Angela Brown, email@example.com, 360-650-3918
STUDENT LEARNING OBJECTIVES
WGSS has identified a set of learning outcomes for its undergraduate curriculum. Among an array of potentially valuable outcomes, the following represent especially important areas of expertise for each student who graduates from the program:
(SLO1) Understand intersectional, feminist, and queer theories, epistemologies, and methodological approaches.
(SLO2) Demonstrate an ability to implement intersectional, feminist, and queer theories, epistemologies, and methodological approaches in scholarly work, activism, and/or creative activities.
(SLO3) Analyze gender as it intersects with other relations of power and privilege, such as race, ethnicity, sexuality, sex, class, nationality, religion, geography, ability, and age; distinguish universalist understandings of gender, women, and sexuality from multi-dimensional analyses that recognize interconnectivity and mutual constitution of categories.
(SLO4) Engage in a variety of intersectional, queer, and feminist approaches, linking theory with practice. Learn how to be an effective advocate informed by transnational, political, sociocultural, and philosophical contexts. Undertake critical reflection and praxis in order to respond imaginatively to social, political, and intellectual issues.