Major Requirements

Overview of Major

  • Choose from Humanities or Social Science
  • Twelve courses (48 credits) in Women’s Studies:
  • WST 200 (SS)
  • Three courses (12 credits) from among the remaining Foundation courses (in groups I – IX)
  • Six electives in Women's Studies (24 credits) from courses listed with at least two departments
  • WST 394, Internship or WST395, Independent Research
  • WST 396, Research Seminar (4 credits)


  • WST 200 (SS)
  • 3 Foundation – 2 of which are Humanities
  • 6 Electives – including at least 3 Humanities
  • WST 394/395 Independent Study/Internship – Humanities Topic
  • *WST 396 Research Seminar


  • WST 200 (SS)
  • 3 Foundation – 2 of which are Social Sciences
  • 6 Electives – including at least 3 Social Sciences
  • WST 394/395 Independent Study/Internship – Social Sciences Topic
  • *WST 396 Research Seminar

*WST 396, Research Seminar, is any WST Seminar style course taken in consultation with your advisor.

Foundation Courses

I. Women and Gender in History

  • WST 201/HIS 204: Women in History: US 1600-1970 (SS)
  • WST 261/HIS 259: African-American Women’s History (SS)
  • WST 251/HIS 296: Women in East Asia (SS)
  • WST 296/HIS 314: International Human Rights (SS)

II. Women and Gender in Society

  • WST 202/ANT 103: Women in Society (SS)
  • WST 218/ANT 244: Marriage, Families and Communities in a Global Perspective (SS)

III. Women and Gender in Politics

  • WST 203F: Women in Politics (SS)

IV. Women and Gender in Art

  • WST 214/AH 210: Women as Image & Text (H)
  • WST 225/AH 259: Women, Cloth & Culture (H)

V. Philosophical Foundations of Feminism

  • WST 205/PHL 171: Philosophical Foundations of Feminism (H)
  • WST 212: Queer Theory (H)

VI. Feminism, Gender and Health

  • WST 206: Feminism, Gender and Health (SS)

VII. Women Writers

  • WST 240/ENG 126: Writing Women’s Lives (H)
  • WST 256/SP 260: Latin American Women Writers (H)
  • WST 273/JPN 273: Japanese Women Writers (H)
  • WST 339/ENG 230: Contemporary Black Women Writers (H)
  • WST 243/ENG 243: Major Authors: Jane Austen (H)
  • WST 243/ENG 243: Major Authors: The Brontes (H)
  • WST 243/ENG 243: Major Authors: The Radical Narratives of Toni Morrison (H)

VIII. Feminism and Gender Studies in Film

  • WST 204/AH 355: Feminist Film Theory (H)
  • WST 288/CLT 212: Mothers, Comrades & Whores (H)
  • WST 264/CLT 216: Women in Hispanic Film (H)
  • WST 262/CLT 214: Women in Japanese Film (H)

IX. Gender and Sexuality

  • WST 103/LIN 103: Language & Sexuality (SS)
  • WST 271/GER 220: Sexuality & Gender (H)
  • WST 272/GER 272: Gender and Sexuality in the 20th Century (H)
  • WST 221/AH 205: Representing Differences (H)


We require that all Women's Studies majors successfully complete two upper-level writing courses:

  • WST 200 - Women's Studies Colloquium
  • One of the following:
    • WST 394 - Independent study, provided that it requires substantial research, writing and revision
    • WST 396 - Research Seminar, as a writing course by arrangement with the instructor
    • Any other WST course, taken as a writing course, by arrangement with instructor

Note for double-majors: the College requires that the upper-level writing requirement be satisfied separately for EACH major.

Honors in Research

Honors in Research recognizes the completion of a distinguished honors thesis, research paper of approximately 35 pages researched and written under the direction of a faculty advisor, and approved by the faculty advisor and a second reader. It is expected that this thesis will be based on research undertaken through WST 393H or WST 394H, and completed in WST 397.

  • To graduate with honors a student must satisfy the following requirements:
  • Be a student majoring in Women’s Studies with a GPA of 3.3 or better in Women’s Studies courses completed for the major, including honors courses as listed below.
  • Successfully complete a minimum of twelve credit hours in courses designated by the department as honors courses. These courses include an advanced course or seminar in Women’s Studies (300 level or higher), preferably to be taken before the end of the junior year.
  • The following two honors courses to be taken in the senior year:  
    • Fall - either WST 393H (Independent Research) or 394H (Internship) with substantial supervised research and written work in gender and women’s studies. This research should be directed toward work in WST 397. Students will need to identify a faculty advisor with whom to work.
    • Spring - WST 397, independent honors thesis course


Organizations/Companies currently offering internships:

  • Afterimage
  • Center for Dispute Settlement
  • City Council of Rochester
  • Division of Human Rights
  • Gay Alliance of Genesee Valley
  • Image Out
  • Monroe County District Attorney’s Office
  • Perinatal Network of Monroe County
  • Planned Parenthood
  • St. Joseph’s Villa
  • Sojourner House
  • Susan B. Anthony House
  • TV Dinner/Metro Justice
  • Urban League of Rochester
  • Visual Studies Workshop (Media Center)
  • Wheatley Branch Library
  • WXXI
  • YWCA Children’s Collaborative

More information on internships can be obtained by emailing the office at

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