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Master of Arts / Doctor of Philosophy

Women's, Gender and Sexuality Studies / Sociology


Program Highlights

This dual MA/PhD program provides a foundation in sociological theories and methods that intertwine with studies in women's rights and gender and sexual identities.

Sample course titles include: Situated Sexualities and Transnational Activism, Global Politics of Women's Bodies, Transformative Storytelling and Black Diasporas, Feminisms, and Sexual Politics.


See the Graduate Bulletin for details.

For more information, contact Interim Director of Graduate Studies Rajani Bhatia at [email protected].

Applied Learning

In this combined MA/PhD program, you collaborate with faculty in both the sociology and women's, gender and sexuality studies departments.

As you complete your requirements, you gain practical skills in quantitative, qualitative, and historical comparative methods that you'll use in your own research. 

Because the department maintains partnerships with many mission-based community organizations, you can gain real-world experience working in areas such as reproductive justice, independent media, citizen political participation, LGBTQ issues, gender violence, and policy making.

Program Requirements
MA in Women’s, Gender and Sexuality Studies
  • Graduate Orientation
  • Feminist Theory
  • Research Seminar
  • Elective courses in a coherent field of study
  • One course related to intersections of race, class, sexuality, and/or nationality
  • One course in an unfamiliar area of study that broadens your interdisciplinary perspective
  • Final Project

For the masters final project, you may count the directed reading and comprehensive exam for your Sociology PhD requirements toward this option, provided you include an exam topic relating to women's, gender, and sexuality studies.

PhD in Sociology

Required Courses

  • Research Methods
  • Sociological Theories I and II
  • Intermediate Statistics
  • Orientation to Sociology
  • Multivariate Analysis
  • Teaching Tool Requirement
  • Supporting courses as advised

Career Paths

Earning two degrees automatically expands the number of job opportunities you'll have after graduation. 

The master's part of the program immediately prepares you to work with women's and LGBTQ community organizations.


Sample Non-Teaching Job Titles

  • Human Services Administrator
  • Domestic Violence Advocate
  • Women's Health Clinic Counselor
  • Communications Consultant

With the doctorate in sociology, you can also pursue academic fellowships and teaching positions at universities and liberal arts colleges, and senior research positions with employers like those listed below.


Sample Employers

  • Social justice think tanks
  • Public health organizations
  • Policy research institutes
  • Federal agencies like the U.S. Census Bureau

"The joint MA/PhD program helped me integrate a feminist consciousness into my research, provided me with access to a wider range of faculty mentors, and prepared me for the academic job market in sociology as well as in women's studies and gender and sexuality studies."

- Elizabeth Harwood, Class of 2018

Admissions Requirements


Departmental Assistantship Consideration

Fall: January 15
Spring: Not Available
Summer: Not Available

No Departmental Assistantship Consideration

Fall: May 1
Spring: Not Available
Summer: Not Available

Required Application Materials
  • Transcripts from all schools attended
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • Official GRE test scores
    GRE scores greater than 5 years old will not be accepted.
  • Statement of Goals
    The statement is generally one to two pages discussing what you have to offer the program and what you wish to get out of the program.  It should include a brief description of the applicant's field of interest, related background, desired area of study and research emphasis or career goals. 
  • Writing Sample