Priya Desai 9 min read Academic Tips and Info, College Lists

List of All U.S. Colleges with a Gender Studies Major

Gender Studies, also known as Gender & Sexuality studies, spans a range of topics that looks at gender and sexuality through an interdisciplinary lens. The field critically examines the overarching structures that dominate society across factors such as gender, ethnicity, and socioeconomic class. 

 

Gender Studies is a relatively new area of study, often adapted from Feminist Studies or Women’s Studies. Now, colleges across the country have begun offering it as a major, and have even founded entire Gender Studies departments with a range of available majors and minors. A degree in Gender Studies can open up a range of future career paths, whether you aspire to be an activist, consultant, or lawyer.

 

Wondering if Gender Studies is a good fit for your academic aspirations? Read on to learn which schools offer this major and what to look for in their programs.

 

Overview of the Gender Studies Major

 

Gender Studies encompasses so much more than cookie-cutter feminism. The undergraduate major generally requires courses in history, gender theory, and other humanities fields, such as political science and philosophy. Gender-specific courses center on topics such as the history of the field and the different waves of feminism. Classes explore structures of power, knowledge, and body. Electives might include: Gender Justice (Columbia University); Narrating Debt (Brown University); Gender, Science, and Theory (UCLA); Polish Women in Film (Loyola University Chicago).

 

Gender Studies departments across colleges have different labels and many have been adapted from departments previously labeled as “Women’s Studies” or “Feminist Studies.” As the field has grown, scholars have pushed for more inclusive studies to account for gender and sexual orientation diversity – thus, these departments are now often referred to as “Gender Studies” or “Gender and Sexuality Studies” at universities. 

 

Most Gender Studies majors participate in seminar-style courses, in which the lecture is more of a discussion and involves a lot of student-teacher interaction. Gender Studies are also usually writing-heavy, with papers on the relevant course topics. These papers could even span personal topics, as you are often invited to center your own positionality in your written work.

 

In order to be successful in Gender Studies, you will need to above all, have an open mind. You should be ready to challenge your current beliefs and never make assumptions or take pre-existing systems at face value. You should also be very passionate about growing and learning; you should never feel like you have reached a “peak” and are immune to future knowledge. 

 

Gender Studies can lead to success in various fields, including law, teaching, communication, human resources, and counseling. Even careers that don’t directly involve gender dynamics can benefit greatly from a gender studies lens, as the major teaches the importance of equity and advocacy in all aspects of life. 

 

Gender Studies majors can go on to graduate school or law school, which will give you a deeper understanding of the subject and its applications. The intersectional nature of the field allows for a successful career in a variety of fields post-graduation. The knowledge and perspectives you gain serve to help you navigate the world in a more equitable manner.

 

What to Look for in a College as a Gender Studies Major

 

Living-Learning Community

 

Gender Studies majors looking to enhance their college experience both inside and outside of the classroom should consider applying to schools with feminism- and activism-related Living Learning Communities. This allows for students to commit to advocacy outside of the classroom and engage with students who share similar viewpoints. 

 

For example, at the University of Cincinnati, the Audre Lorde Social Justice House members partake in a gender-inclusive environment, and learn strategies for incorporating self-care into their lives in order to sustain activism. They also have the opportunity to engage with professionals in fields relating to intersectionality and the political climate.  

 

Liberal Culture/Surroundings

 

Gender Studies majors should also ensure that the college and its surrounding environment emanate the ideals that you hold dear. As you learn more about gender-related activism, you’ll thrive in an environment that is conducive to this type of thought. You’ll be able to nurture your learning both inside and outside of the classroom. 

 

For example, cities like Washington, D.C. and Los Angeles hold events like Women’s Marches and other demonstrations periodically. Going to school in a politically active area can be beneficial in applying the epistemologies you learn in the classroom to current real-world issues. 

 

Similarly, schools like the University of Maryland offer internships at the local, state, and federal government level, and politically active nonprofits. Students have previously interned at organizations such as The Feminist Majority Foundation, My Sister’s Place, and Court Appointed Special Advocates.

 

Symposiums and Related Events

 

Often, Gender Studies departments at colleges host symposiums, large-scale conference events, where different people can come to speak on a selected annual theme. This entails lectures, seminars, and other opportunities for students to learn from thought leaders both directly and indirectly affiliated with the university. 

 

For instance, Lewis and Clark College has hosted almost 40 of these events, and its last symposium, themed “Tensions of Possibility” included workshops, presentations, film screenings, roundtable discussions, and more. In the past, their speaker list has included activists like Angela Davis and Leslie Feinberg. UT Austin also has an annual Gender Symposium, with speakers consisting of faculty members from various departments and visiting scholars. The school approaches the event as a flow of ideas, and engagement of various methodologies that have dominated and are new to the field.

Discover your chances at hundreds of schools

Our free chancing engine takes into account your history, background, test scores, and extracurricular activities to show you your real chances of admission—and how to improve them.

List of All U.S. Colleges With a Gender Studies Major

 

School City State
Arizona State University | ASU Tempe Arizona
University of Arizona Tucson Arizona
Northern Arizona University | NAU Flagstaff Arizona
California State University, Fresno | CSU Fresno Fresno California
California State University, Fullerton | CSU Fullerton Fullerton California
California State University, Long Beach | Long Beach State Long Beach California
California State University, Northridge | CSUN Northridge California
University of California, Berkeley | UC Berkeley Berkeley California
University of California, Davis | UC Davis Davis California
University of California, Irvine | UC Irvine Irvine California
University of California, Los Angeles | UCLA Los Angeles California
University of California, Riverside | UC Riverside Riverside California
University of California, Santa Barbara | UCSB Santa Barbara California
University of California, Santa Cruz | UCSC Santa Cruz California
Chapman University Orange California
Loyola Marymount University | LMU Los Angeles California
Pitzer College Claremont California
Pomona College Claremont California
University of Redlands Redlands California
San Diego State University | SDSU San Diego California
San Francisco State University | SF State San Francisco California
Santa Clara University Santa Clara California
Scripps College Claremont California
Saint Mary’s College of California | St. Mary’s Moraga California
Sonoma State University | SSU Rohnert Park California
University of Colorado Boulder | CU Boulder Boulder Colorado
Colorado College Colorado Springs Colorado
Colorado State University | CSU Fort Collins Colorado
Connecticut College New London Connecticut
University of Connecticut | UConn Storrs Connecticut
University of Hartford West Hartford Connecticut
Trinity College Hartford Connecticut
Yale University New Haven Connecticut
University of Delaware Newark Delaware
American University Washington DC Washington DC
George Washington University | GW Washington DC Washington DC
Georgetown University Washington DC Washington DC
Eckerd College Saint Petersburg Florida
Florida International University | FIU Miami Florida
University of Florida Gainesville Florida
University of Miami Coral Gables Florida
University of South Florida | USF Tampa Florida
Agnes Scott College Decatur Georgia
Emory University Atlanta Georgia
Georgia Southern University Statesboro Georgia
Georgia State University Atlanta Georgia
University of Georgia Athens Georgia
Mercer University Macon Georgia
Spelman College Atlanta Georgia
University of Hawaii at Manoa | UH Manoa Honolulu Hawaii
Augustana College Rock Island Illinois
DePaul University Chicago Illinois
Illinois Wesleyan University Bloomington Illinois
Knox College Galesburg Illinois
Loyola University Chicago Chicago Illinois
Northwestern University Evanston Illinois
Roosevelt University Chicago Illinois
Ball State University | BSU Muncie Indiana
Butler University Indianapolis Indiana
DePauw University Greencastle Indiana
Earlham College Richmond Indiana
University of Notre Dame Notre Dame Indiana
Saint Mary’s College (Indiana) Notre Dame Indiana
Coe College Cedar Rapids Iowa
Cornell College Mount Vernon Iowa
Iowa State University Ames Iowa
University of Iowa Iowa City Iowa
Luther College Decorah Iowa
University of Kansas Lawrence Kansas
Kansas State University | KSU Manhattan Kansas
Wichita State University | WSU Wichita Kansas
Berea College Berea Kentucky
University of Louisville Louisville Kentucky
Bates College Lewiston Maine
Colby College Waterville Maine
University of Maine Orono Maine
Goucher College Baltimore Maryland
University of Maryland, Baltimore County | UMBC Baltimore Maryland
University of Maryland, College Park | Maryland College Park Maryland
Towson University Towson Maryland
Amherst College Amherst Massachusetts
Assumption College Worcester Massachusetts
Brandeis University Waltham Massachusetts
Clark University Worcester Massachusetts
Harvard University Cambridge Massachusetts
College of the Holy Cross | Holy Cross Worcester Massachusetts
University of Massachusetts Amherst | UMass Amherst Amherst Massachusetts
University of Massachusetts Boston | UMass Boston Boston Massachusetts
Merrimack College North Andover Massachusetts
Simmons College Boston Massachusetts
Smith College Northampton Massachusetts
University of Massachusetts Dartmouth | UMass Dartmouth North Dartmouth Massachusetts
Tufts University Medford Massachusetts
Wellesley College Wellesley Massachusetts
Wheaton College (Massachusetts) Norton Massachusetts
Williams College Williamstown Massachusetts
Central Michigan University | CMU Mount Pleasant Michigan
Eastern Michigan University | EMU Ypsilanti Michigan
Grand Valley State University | GVSU Allendale Michigan
Hope College Holland Michigan
University of Michigan Ann Arbor Michigan
Michigan State University East Lansing Michigan
Oakland University Rochester Hills Michigan
Western Michigan University | WMU Kalamazoo Michigan
Carleton College Northfield Minnesota
Gustavus Adolphus College Saint Peter Minnesota
Macalester College Saint Paul Minnesota
University of Minnesota, Twin Cities | Minnesota Minneapolis Minnesota
University of Minnesota Duluth | UMD Duluth Minnesota
College of St. Benedict | CSB Saint Joseph Minnesota
St. Olaf College Northfield Minnesota
University of St. Thomas (Minnesota) Saint Paul Minnesota
Saint Louis University | SLU Saint Louis Missouri
Washington University in St. Louis | WashU Saint Louis Missouri
Webster University Saint Louis Missouri
University of Montana Missoula Montana
University of Nebraska‚ Lincoln | UNL Lincoln Nebraska
University of Nevada, Las Vegas | UNLV Las Vegas Nevada
University of Nevada, Reno Reno Nevada
Dartmouth College Hanover New Hampshire
University of New Hampshire | UNH Durham New Hampshire
Drew University Madison New Jersey
Montclair State University | MSU Montclair New Jersey
Rutgers University‚ New Brunswick | Rutgers New Brunswick New Jersey
Rutgers University‚ Newark Newark New Jersey
The College of New Jersey | TCNJ Ewing New Jersey
University of New Mexico | UNM Albuquerque New Mexico
New Mexico State University | NMSU Las Cruces New Mexico
Barnard College New York New York
Colgate University Hamilton New York
Brooklyn College Brooklyn New York
Hunter College | CUNY Hunter New York New York
Fordham University Bronx New York
Hamilton College Clinton New York
Hobart and William Smith Colleges | HWS Geneva New York
Hofstra University Hempstead New York
Pace University New York New York
University of Rochester Rochester New York
The State University of New York at Albany | SUNY Albany Albany New York
The State University of New York at Stony Brook | SUNY Stony Brook Stony Brook New York
The State University of New York at Geneseo | SUNY Geneseo Geneseo New York
State University of New York at Purchase | SUNY Purchase Purchase New York
Syracuse University Syracuse New York
Vassar College Poughkeepsie New York
Appalachian State University Boone North Carolina
Duke University Durham North Carolina
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill | UNC Chapel Hill North Carolina
University of North Carolina at Greensboro | UNC Greensboro Greensboro North Carolina
North Carolina State University | NC State Raleigh North Carolina
Wake Forest University Winston-Salem North Carolina
North Dakota State University | NDSU Fargo North Dakota
Bowling Green State University | BGSU Bowling Green Ohio
Case Western Reserve University Cleveland Ohio
University of Cincinnati Cincinnati Ohio
Cleveland State University | CSU Cleveland Ohio
University of Dayton Dayton Ohio
Denison University Granville Ohio
John Carroll University | JCU University Heights Ohio
Kenyon College Gambier Ohio
Miami University Oxford Ohio
Oberlin College Oberlin Ohio
Ohio State University | OSU Columbus Ohio
Ohio University Athens Ohio
Ohio Wesleyan University Delaware Ohio
Otterbein University Westerville Ohio
University of Toledo Toledo Ohio
College of Wooster Wooster Ohio
University of Oklahoma Norman Oklahoma
University of Tulsa Tulsa Oklahoma
Oregon State University | OSU Corvallis Oregon
University of Oregon Eugene Oregon
Portland State University | PSU Portland Oregon
Willamette University Salem Oregon
Allegheny College Meadville Pennsylvania
Bucknell University Lewisburg Pennsylvania
Dickinson College Carlisle Pennsylvania
Duquesne University Pittsburgh Pennsylvania
Gettysburg College Gettysburg Pennsylvania
Haverford College Haverford Pennsylvania
Lafayette College Easton Pennsylvania
Lehigh University Bethlehem Pennsylvania
Pennsylvania State University | PSU University Park Pennsylvania
University of Pennsylvania | UPenn Philadelphia Pennsylvania
University of Pittsburgh | Pitt Pittsburgh Pennsylvania
University of Scranton Scranton Pennsylvania
Swarthmore College Swarthmore Pennsylvania
Temple University Philadelphia Pennsylvania
Ursinus College Collegeville Pennsylvania
Villanova University Villanova Pennsylvania
West Chester University | WCUPA West Chester Pennsylvania
Widener University Chester Pennsylvania
Brown University Providence Rhode Island
Providence College Providence Rhode Island
Rhode Island College | RIC Providence Rhode Island
University of Rhode Island | URI Kingston Rhode Island
College of Charleston Charleston South Carolina
Clemson University Clemson South Carolina
University of South Carolina | USC Columbia South Carolina
East Tennessee State University | ETSU Johnson City Tennessee
Sewanee: The University of the South | Sewanee Sewanee Tennessee
Vanderbilt University Nashville Tennessee
Rice University Houston Texas
Southwestern University Georgetown Texas
Texas A&M University College Station Texas
University of Texas at Austin | UT Austin Austin Texas
University of Texas at El Paso | UTEP El Paso Texas
University of Texas at San Antonio | UTSA San Antonio Texas
University of Utah Salt Lake City Utah
Bennington College Bennington Vermont
Middlebury College Middlebury Vermont
University of Vermont | UVM Burlington Vermont
Hollins University Roanoke Virginia
Old Dominion University | ODU Norfolk Virginia
University of Richmond Richmond Virginia
Virginia Commonwealth University | VCU Richmond Virginia
Eastern Washington University | EWU Cheney Washington
Seattle University Seattle Washington
Washington State University | WSU Pullman Washington
University of Washington Seattle Washington
Beloit College Beloit Wisconsin
Marquette University Milwaukee Wisconsin
University of Wisconsin-Madison | Wisconsin Madison Wisconsin
University of Wisconsin‚ Milwaukee | UWM Milwaukee Wisconsin
University of Wyoming Laramie Wyoming
Purdue University West Lafayette Indiana

 

Notice a school that’s missing? Email us and let us know!

 

What Are Your Chances of Acceptance?

 

Regardless of what major you’re considering, the primary step you should take is ensuring your academically on par with the school’s previously accepted applicants. This is because most schools utilize the Academic Index, a tool that filters out applicants based on specific statistics.

 

You should also make sure that your qualitative application components mesh with the school’s culture. This means that your essays and extracurriculars need to back your prospective major or the school’s overall vibe. For Gender Studies majors, the personal statement and any supplemental essays are especially important because they are opportunities to show admissions committees your writing skill. Some extracurriculars that might overlap with your prospective gender studies major are writing activism, volunteering in a political or civic service office, writing in your school’s newspaper, and participating in empowerment clubs.

 

To learn more about your chances of acceptance to universities for gender studies, check out CollegeVine’s free chancing engine. Unlike other calculators, this resource will take into account a large portion of your personal profile, including academic statistics and qualitative factors like extracurriculars.

Want more tips on improving your academic profile?

We'll send valuable information to help you strengthen your profile and get ready for college admissions.


Priya Desai
Blogger at CollegeVine
Short bio
Priya has been working at CollegeVine for two years in various capacities, including mentoring students, editing hundreds of essays, and creating blog content. She has also interned in healthcare consulting. She is extremely grateful for all the help she received as an applicant and wants to pay it forward by demystifying the admissions process for others.