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Graduate Option in Gender and Women's Studies

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The Graduate Option in Gender and Women's Studies (GWS) provides graduate students, obtaining degrees in a variety of participating departments and faculties, with a cross-disciplinary specialization in feminist, women's, and gender studies.

This program is open to graduate students at McGill University enrolled in a department that has approved the Option. Prospective students interested in the Graduate Option should follow the admissions procedures of their home department. During the application process, prospective students will be allowed to specify their interest in the Option through uApply.

Student supervision in the Option is undertaken by one's departmental supervisor who oversees student work, including choice of thesis, dissertation, or project topic. A student's PhD dissertation, MA thesis, MA research project or paper must be on a topic that significantly engages with issues of gender and/or women and/or feminism. Students in the Graduate Option may approach the Women's Studies Advisory Committee (WSAC) to help identify potential faculty supervision within their home department. In addition, the Supervision: Graduate and Postdoctoral Support page offers research and evidence-based advice to graduate students and their supervisors on how to work together effectively and avoid common problems in supervision.

Students who pursue this option obtain a graduate degree in their home department as well as an "Option/Concentration" in Gender and Women's Studies (GWS). There are no prerequisites to enter into the Option. However, previous coursework in gender and women's studies provides an idea foundation for more in-depth study of and research in feminist scholarship. Upon completion of all requirements in the home department, as well as the courses listed below, the Graduate Option in Gender and Women's Studies (GWS) will appear on the student's transcript along with the designated graduate degree (MA or PhD).


MA (6 credits)

Required Course (3 credits)

WMST 601 Feminist Theories and Methods (3 credits)

Complementary Course (3 credits)

  • 3 credits selected from a list of Complementary Courses

  • OR WMST 602 Feminist Research Symposium (3 credits)


PhD (9 credits)

Required Courses (6 credits)

WMST 601 Feminist Theories and Methods (3 credits)

WMST 602 Feminist Research Symposium (3 credits)

Complementary Course (3 credits)

  • 3 credits selected from a list of Complementary Courses

**Please note that students are not required to complete WMST 601 or WMST 602 in the first year of their graduate program and may benefit from delaying taking WMST 602 until their second year of studies.**

The Option was developed by the Women's Studies Program in response to needs expressed by the Graduate Group for Feminist Scholarship (GGFS) and to the range of inquiries the Women's Studies Program regularly receives from potential students interested in graduate-level work with a feminist focus at McGill University.

McGill ecalendar general reference to graduate programs