25 BEST BACHELOR'S DEGREES IN GENDER AND WOMEN'S STUDIES
Are you ready to discover your college program?
As Gender and Women's Studies is an undeniably interdisciplinary and multifaceted program, graduates are well-rounded candidates for not only a variety of career opportunities but graduate programs in many related disciplines.
Earning an undergraduate degree in Gender and Women's Studies is an exciting opportunity for those committed to the full examination of oppression, intersectionality, and social justice. Many universities that offer majors in Gender and Women's Studies encompass Sexuality in this topic as well, whether formally in the title or only in offered courses.
As the intersection between gender and sexuality is always examined alongside other identities, course topics in all the programs ranked below also cover identity-based issues like race, class, ethnicity, culture, and more. Gender and Women's Studies is also most often taught as an interdisciplinary discourse. In many of the following programs, students can take courses from other departments that are related to the wide-spread topics within Gender and Women's Studies, such as History, Science, or English.
As Gender and Women's Studies is an undeniably interdisciplinary and multifaceted program, graduates are well-rounded candidates for not only a variety of career opportunities but graduate programs in many related disciplines. Universities have seen their Gender and Women's Studies students go onto employment, research, or higher education in law, education, public policy, social work, and many more. Earning an undergraduate degree in Gender and Women's Studies is an interesting choice that will guarantee opportunities for years to come in today's global society.
Best Value Schools publishes college degree rankings with the belief of how one's higher education should be, both, affordable and an investment of continued value for the students who pursue them. The staff of BVS collects data from reputable sources in order to calculate Net Price and the short and long-term value of every ranked degree. Collected data is simplified into weighted categories before scoring and then scaled through a BVS Score up to 100. The weighted categories are:
- Degree Investment Return (25%)
- Student & Alumni Evaluation (25%)
- Cost Value (25%)
- Matriculation (10%)
- Academic Success (15%)
No matter what degree you decide on, we hope our research and support has made the selection process easier. There are numerous resources BVS utilizes to collect information on degrees, and we encourage you to check them out for yourself!
Here are the 25 Best Bachelor's Degrees in Gender and Women's Studies!
|#1||Harvard University Cambridge, MA|
|#2||Stanford University Stanford, CA|
|#3||University of California-Los Angeles Los Angeles, CA|
|#4||Iowa State University Ames, IA|
|#5||Duke University Durham, NC|
|#6||University of Pennsylvania Philadelphia, PA|
|#7||Vanderbilt University Nashville, TN|
|#8||University of Michigan-Ann Arbor Ann Arbor, MI|
|#9||San Diego State University San Diego, CA|
|#10||University of California-Berkeley Berkeley, CA|
Featured Online Programs
Figuring out where to apply? These top, accredited schools offer a variety of online degrees. Consider one of these accredited programs, and discover their value today.
Harvard University's Bachelor of Arts in Studies of Women, Gender, and Sexuality gives students the benefit of a small and passionate cohort, consisting of trained faculty and peers from all disciplinary backgrounds. The commitment to the interdisciplinary nature of WGS studies allows students to select concentration areas from a variety of discourses. In the past, students have taken courses in related departments like Religion, Statistics, English and American Literature, African and African-American Studies, and more. Course topics within the department include Black Radicalism, LGBT Life Stories, Psychology of the Gendered Body, and Feminist Theory as Critique.
Stanford University's Bachelor of Arts in Feminist, Gender, and Sexuality Studies is a 12-course program consisting of work in theories, research methods, seminars, and electives. Students will take courses in topics like Sex and the Novel; The Marriage Plot; Men's Violence Against Women in Literature; Black Feminist Theory; and more. The major requirements are situated within the university's general education requirements; there are certain feminist-focused writing courses within the department that fulfill required writing courses. All students are required to complete a focus area, which may be in Art & Culture, Health, Global Studies, LGBT/Queer Studies, or Overseas Studies.
University of California-Los AngelesLocation
Los Angeles, CATuition
The Bachelor of Arts in Gender Studies from the University of California-Los Angeles provides students with tools in analysis, writing, qualitative research methods, and an understanding of social inequality through a historical and transnational lens. These tools work in conjunction with interdisciplinary coursework in Gender Studies, with topics like Pacific Island Diaspora, Sex Work, Latin American Women in Film, and Race, Gender and Punishment. Other courses are cross-listed with departments like Anthropology, Art History, English, and Education. The course of study is made up of four core courses, a research seminar, and seven courses to fulfill electives.
Iowa State UniversityLocation
Iowa State University's Bachelor of Arts in Women's and Gender Studies is a cross-disciplinary program focused on the analysis of issues in relation to identities. Students will graduate versed in a variety of disciplines, all through feminist perspectives. The curriculum emphasizes the importance of critical thinking and the use of intellectual means to interrogate assumptions encouraged by various systems in society. Graduates from the program may go onto careers in counseling, education, human resources, law, politics, business, and more. Offered courses in the program may be cross-listed in other departments to promote the interdisciplinary nature of the field. Related departments that students may take courses from include religion, speech communication; health and human performance; and English.
Duke University's Bachelor of Arts in Gender, Sexuality & Feminist Studies studies identity as a complex social phenomenon. The curriculum focuses on the intersections between gender, race, sexuality, class, and nation, and the combination of these aspects of identity in research methods and analysis. The ten-course major is made up of six core courses and four electives, which may be chosen from other program offerings. Course topics within the GSF department include Money, Sex, Power; Feminist Activism; Interpreting Bodies: Identity and Beyond; Queer Theory; and more. Students may opt to take courses that fulfill one of three offered Clusters: Literature+Performance+Visuality, Global+Politics+Inequality, or STEM: Science+Technology+Environment+Medicine.
University of PennsylvaniaLocation
The Bachelor of Arts in Gender, Sexuality, and Women's Studies offered by the University of Pennsylvania is designed interdisciplinary, allowing students to take courses from its home department and others across campus. This teaches students how to engage with feminist and queer theory through lenses informed by other related disciplines, and then place that theory into a greater context. With this interdisciplinary emphasis, students may design their own concentration area made up of five courses within another single field or department. Concentration areas have included Politics and Philosophy; History and English; Media and Communication; and more. Those committed to a multi-disciplinary understanding of the field are encouraged to further that concentration into a double major.
Vanderbilt University's Bachelor of Arts in Women's and Gender Studies builds off of interdisciplinary knowledge to teach students how to examine gender and sexuality as social constructs and historically variable components of culture. Students are encouraged to reexamine traditional beliefs and engage in contemporary research and thought. The curriculum is centered on bringing a critical perspective to gender and sexuality as well as other aspects of identity, such as race, ethnicity, class, ability, age, and nationality. Recent course topics have included Introduction to Critical Masculinity Studies; Transgender Lives in Literature and Film; Literary Lesbians; Women Who Kill; and Feminism and Film.
University of Michigan-Ann ArborLocation
Ann Arbor, MITuition
The Bachelor of Arts in Women's Studies from the University of Michigan provides students with an interdisciplinary understanding of women, gender, and sexuality, training them in comparative thinking and engagement with multicultural and global scholarship. The Women's Studies major offers many areas of focus: LGBTQ and Sexuality Studies; Gender, Race, and Ethnicity in the US; Gender, Culture and Representation; and Gender in the Global Context. The 33-credit program is made up of seven required courses and completed through electives. Elective topics may be cross-listed in other departments to encourage the growth of necessary interdisciplinary lenses. Only 14 of the 33 credits must be completed in residence; students may then complete courses online.
San Diego State UniversityLocation
San Diego, CATuition
San Diego State University's Bachelor of Arts in Women's Studies offers students the chance to learn from award-winning faculty in a small and supportive department built off of an interdisciplinary curriculum. The program is set out to prepare students with the knowledge and skills necessary to create a more just and equitable society, using the knowledge and relevant tools to eliminate oppression based on gender, race, ethnicity, social class, age, culture, and more. The curriculum is grounded in feminist pedagogy and offers students the opportunity for internships, study abroad programs, research, and service learning. Course topics include Sex, Power, and Politics; Gender, Science and Technology; and Women in Literature.
University of California-BerkeleyLocation
The Bachelor of Arts in Gender and Women's Studies from the University of California-Berkeley focuses on the intersectional analysis of gender, women, and sexuality, using these sights of identity as a category for analysis. The curriculum begins with feminist theory and leads students to more advanced courses that call for critical reflection and analysis of contemporary thought and research. Topic areas of coursework and curricular focuses include feminist science studies, gender and work, gender and health, and queer visual culture. To declare the major once admitted to UC Berkeley, students must complete the single prerequisite course and have a GPA of 2.0 or better. There is an offered Honors program within the major.
Northwestern University's Bachelor of Arts in Gender and Sexuality Studies is an interdisciplinary program drawing from more than 20 departments across campus. Students take all types of courses covering the history and theory of gender, feminism, women's studies, and sexuality studies, from first-year seminars to potential graduate-level courses. Many in the program have opted to write an honors thesis in gender and sexuality studies or conduct research through various offered seminars. Offered courses include Beyond the Binary: Transgender and Race; Language and Sexuality; Transnational Perspectives; Gender and Citizenship; and more. The curriculum emphasizes the importance of placing gender and sexuality in a domestic and global context, using research tools from across disciplines to reach these understandings.
University of North Carolina at Chapel HillLocation
Chapel Hill, NCTuition
The Bachelor of Arts in Women's and Gender Studies from the University of North Carolina is grounded in a feminist interdisciplinary course of study. Students will graduate well-versed in scholarship on feminist theory as well as the intellectual, political, economic, and artistic contributions of women to greater social contexts. The program emphasizes the importance of research and application of knowledge to create solutions for personal, social, and community issues. Course topics may include Gender, Communication, and Culture; Queer Latina Literature, Performance, and Visual Art; Southern Women Writers; and Feminist Literary Theory. Students will also complete a faculty-supervised internship.
Ohio University-Main CampusLocation
Ohio University's Bachelor of Arts in Women's Gender, & Sexuality Studies utilizes an interdisciplinary curriculum to prepare students with a diverse array of knowledge. Students will graduate with an understanding of gender and sexuality's intersection with race, ethnicity, class, and other elements of identity, all through an interdisciplinary lens. Core topics include Global Feminisms; Sexual Revolutions; The Black Family; The Black Woman; and more. Students may take courses from related departments, like History, Geology, English, and Communications. Graduates of the program have gone onto careers in law, public health, social, work, research, community education, and creative writing. Many have also gone onto graduate school.
New Haven, CTTuition
Yale University's Bachelor of Arts in Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies examines how identities, institutions, and economic, cultural, and political systems are informed by gender and sexuality. All students in the program take core courses and then begin an individualized area of concentration, culminating their studies with a yearlong or single-term senior essay. As the field demands it, this program promotes practice that is transnational, intersectional, and interdisciplinary. Recent concentration areas have included literature and queer aesthetics; transnational feminist practices; AIDS health policies; women's health; and more. Course topics include Neoliberalism and Sexuality; Transnational Approaches; and Bodies and Pleasures, Sex and Genders.
The Bachelor of Arts in Sexuality, Women's & Gender Studies from Amherst College draws from related disciplines to examine sexuality and gender and their intersections with race, class, and nation. As the curriculum is designed interdisciplinary, students will gain knowledge from faculty specialized in literature, history, anthropology, classics, medicine, and more. Offered courses include (Self) Representation of Trans Identities; Queer Theory and Practice; and Bad Black Women. The nine-course degree is made up of three required, and the remaining six electives may be chosen from the SWAGS list or other related departments. All students will submit a portfolio to the department before graduation, showcasing their comprehensive growth and understanding of the discipline.
University of Wisconsin-MadisonLocation
The Bachelor of Arts in Gender and Women's Studies from the University of Wisconsin-Madison provides students the tools and knowledge necessary to analyze gender and other sites of inequality through a lens that's historically and culturally informed. Graduates from the program have gone onto work in fields such as health policy, immigration law, social work, reproductive justice, medicine, and more. The curriculum is focused on the interdisciplinary nature of the field, offering courses that cover literature, history, anthropology, education, law, philosophy, and more in relation to feminist thought. The major is a total of 30 credits, but a 15-credit certificate is available to students hoping to pursue complementary disciplines in conjunction with Gender and Women's Studies.
Pomona College's Bachelor of Arts in Gender & Women's Studies is grounded in understanding the sexual difference as a culturally and historically specific phenomena, drawing from feminist research and knowledge of how gender intersects with other social identities. There are two options for students who wish to major in GWS: the first is centered on the theoretical focus of feminist interdisciplinary scholarship. The second is a joint major, linking feminist studies with another related discipline or program such as art history, English, French language, politics, science, and more. The curriculum is made up of four core courses, two courses in feminist theory, and then three electives. Students who pursue the joint major will take courses that are cross-listed between GWS and another department.
The curriculum of Dartmouth College's Bachelor of Arts in Women's Gender, & Sexuality Studies uses a theoretical base to analyze the systemic construction of gender, with a focused understanding of the historical, economic, political, social, and cultural experiences of women. The program is designed interdisciplinarily, with course offerings from the Social Sciences, Humanities, and Sciences. The major is made up of four core courses and nine additional courses, which give students the option to select electives from another department. Students who decide on the major in Women's Gender, & Sexuality Studies from Dartmouth must meet with the Chair of the department before starting the coursework.
State University of New York at New PaltzLocation
New Paltz, NYTuition
The Bachelor of Arts in Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies from the State University of NY at New Paltz is made up of five core courses and a subsequent 12-credit Cluster. Students may choose from four Clusters: Historical and Political Context; Culture and Representation; Race, Culture, and Nation; and Gender, Sexuality, and Queer Studies. The remaining nine credits in the 39 required will be made up of electives. The department is proudly focused on deconstructing gender and sexuality concerning local and global structures of power, privilege, and oppression. Faculty members utilize interdisciplinary knowledge in their commitment to a feminist pedagogy built upon social justice.
The Women's Gender, and Sexuality Studies Bachelor of Arts' at Williams College encourages a critical and intensive analysis on gender and sexuality, and how they influence social and political structures alongside different yet related disciplines. The use of intersectional lenses is vital to succeeding in the program. Students will constantly be analyzing topics with an understanding of the relationship between race, ethnicity, class, ability, nationality, and religion. Courses focus on queer and feminist theories and their historical development, laying the foundation for students to develop criticism against current issues. Students at Williams' can also research alongside faculty members with related research interests during their senior year.
Georgetown University designed their Bachelor of Arts in Women's and Gender Studies to prepare students for work in a variety of fields dedicated to women's rights, gender justice, and the cultivation of healthy of sexualities across the globe. Students may decide on a concentration area from four options, including Globalization and Poverty. The curriculum takes an interdisciplinary approach in its understanding of the intersections between race, ethnicity, class, gender, and sexuality. Specific topics include women's lives, labor, and arts; the politics of sexuality; the structural, institutional, legal, and historical meanings of gender; and the gendered formation of knowledge. The major consists of 11 courses, of which only three are foundational, and the rest are electives.
Swarthmore College's Bachelor of Arts in Gender & Sexuality Studies studies social relations of power interdisciplinary, using a variety of disciplines and their texts as well as a wide array of cultural and historical contexts. The curriculum is designed to focus on feminist and queer theory but puts it alongside research in the humanities, social sciences, and natural sciences. The program is open to students at Swarthmore so long as they meet with the Program Coordinator. Otherwise, students typically utilize the program's course of study to earn a minor. Courses are derived from several departments at Swarthmore, including English and French. Course topics can cover Economic of the Family; Dance and Diaspora; and Love and Sex in Russian Literature.
Carthage College's Women's and Gender Studies department offers only a five-course minor to students, to be earned alongside a related major. The minor examines the study of women and gender and how it's transformed other disciplines. The program is designed to cover not only the influence of gender on the world, but also the effects of race, class, ethnicity, and culture. Students take courses that cover information of many generations and social, cultural, political, and economic phenomena, such as Race, Gender, and Sex in Ancient Greece and Rome; Women and the Bible; Women of Africa; and Women and Politics.
The Bachelor of Arts in Gender, Sexuality, and Feminist Studies from Bowdoin College intensely examines the social constructions of gender and sexuality, and rather using these concepts as modes of inquiry and analysis. There is an emphasis on how gendered ideologies are related to race, class, ability, geography, and other forms of identity and experience. As the discourse of these topics is multi and interdisciplinary, students may take courses in humanities, social sciences, and the natural sciences. Middlebury's 10-course program consists of only five core courses, so students benefit from the ability to focus on topics that suit their ambitions or prospective research. Graduates build a strong understanding of how feminism is a historical activist movement that is fueled by a tradition of thought.
The Bachelor of Arts in Gender, Sexuality, and Women's Studies from Bowdoin College is designed to shape social identities and experiences at multiple levels while giving students the tools to interrogate gender expression and social norms. The curriculum asks the necessary questions of who is privileged in certain hierarchies and what the political and social implications of that privilege are. Graduates are prepared for a variety of post-graduate pursuits, as the program is interdisciplinarily focused in its teaching of the intersection of gender, sexuality, race, and class. Course topics may also be multidisciplinary, such as those focused on Jane Austen, Black Women's Lives as the History of Africana Studies, and Gender, Islam, and Politics in Contemporary Pakistan.
Get prepared for your next steps
Use articles and resources to uncover answers to common questions, get guidance on your goals, and learn about applying to schools.
Discover a program that is right for you.
Explore different options for you based on your degree interests.