Programs by Campus


Gender Studies
College of  Arts and Sciences

Departmental E-mail: gender [at] indiana [dot] edu

Departmental URL:



Gender Studies examines the social processes, cultural repre­sentation , relations of power, and forms of knowledge that generate an array of gendered perspectives and experiences worldwide. A focus on gender as an analytic category facilitates an array of scholarly collaborations, reflecting new theoretical and methodological developments in diverse fields such as the social sciences, the arts and humanities, the natural sciences, and policy studies. Categories of difference that articulate with gender—such as race, ethnicity, class, and religion—are vertical grids of attention throughout the doctoral degree program.

The Department emphasizes integrative and transdisciplinary modes of analysis for the study of sexualities and sexual identi­ties, bodies and their technologization and medicalization, representation and social/cultural production, and feminist epistemologies.

Three unique core courses form the heart of the program: G600 Concepts of Gender, G603 Contemporary Debates in Feminist Theory, G702 Researching Gender Issues.

Areas of Concentration

In addition, students select one of three areas of concentration:

  • Medicine, Science, and Technologies of the Body
  • Sexualities, Desires, Identities
  • Cultural Representations and Media Practices

Note that these concentrations are flexible and overlapping to some extent. Students may change their area of concentration as they move through the program.

Special Requirements

(See also general University Graduate School requirements.)

Doctor of Philosophy Degree

Admission Requirements

  • Applicants for graduate admission must hold baccalaureate degrees from accredited four-year collegiate institutions.
  • For graduate admission the College requires a cumulative undergraduate GPA of 3.0 or higher.
  • We require the Graduate Record Examinations (GRE) be taken in the past five years. We prefer a score of 600 or higher on either the verbal or quantitative sections of the examination and a 5.0 on the Analytical Writing assessment. Furthermore, we expect a minimum total score of 1150 (Quantitative and Verbal scores added together). The institution code for Indiana University is 1324. All applicants must ask ETS to forward GRE scores to IU using this code.
  • For applicants whose native language is not English, the College and the University Graduate School require proof of proficiency in reading, writing, speaking, and understanding English. In almost all cases proficiency should be demon­strated by achieving a score of 213 or higher on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL).

Course Requirements

Students will complete at least 60 credit hours of course work, which includes 9 credit hours of core courses, 15 credit hours in a chosen area of concentration, and a 12 credit hour gradu­ate minor (taken either in another department or designed on an intra- or interdepartmental basis). Note that elective courses in one’s area of concentration may be taken outside the Department of Gender Studies. A maximum of 30 credits may be transferred from graduate work completed at another university, provided the Director of Graduate Studies approves the course content.

Only those students intending to pursue the Ph.D. will be admitted to the program. However, a Master’s degree may be obtained upon satisfactory completion of its requirements, which are: three required core courses for the doctorate; a minimum of nine additional credit hours in GNDR, including two 3 cr. courses at the 600 level and one 3 cr. course at the 700 level; and up to 12 credit hours of approved elective courses outside Gender Studies. A total of 30 credit hours of course work is required to obtain the Master’s degree.

Foreign Language Requirement

Gender Studies does not require a foreign language for all stu­dents. However, if a candidate is engaged in transnational gen­der scholarship, a foreign language may be formally required. The DGS will determine the means by which proficiency will be demonstrated.

Research Skills

Beyond the required core course G702 Researching Gender Issues, there is no specific research-related skill requirement. However, a student’s advisor may require additional compe­tency in (a) research skill(s) appropriate to that student’s dissertation topic. Such requirements may include competency in a second language, statistical methods, questionnaire development, ethnographic methods, interviewing techniques, textual or media analysis, computing/internet/webmaster operations, specific laboratory skills, other research and technical skills, or appropriate combinations of any of these. These studies are to be undertaken early in the candidate’s graduate career. The as­sessment and completion of any required research competencies normally must be certified by the DGS prior to admission to candidacy.

Additional Requirements after Admission with Master’s Degree

Candidates admitted with a master’s degree from another institution may be required to take additional preparatory work, depending on their background and training. The program will be decided in consultation with the student’s faculty advisor and the DGS.

Qualifying Examination and the Dissertation Defense

Qualifying examinations (both written and oral) are to be taken approximately 8 months after the completion of course work. Upon successful completion of the qualifying examination and presentation of a satisfactory dissertation proposal, the student will be nominated to candidacy for the Ph.D. The Dissertation Committee, which must be approved by the Dean of the Gradu­ate School, will be responsible for directing and evaluating the thesis. The dissertation defense serves as the final oral exami­nation and will cover topics related to the dissertation and area of specialization.

Ph.D. Minor in Gender Studies

Course Requirements

A Ph.D. Minor in Gender Studies requires at least 12 credit hours of GNDR courses, which may include courses that are joint-listed with other departments. At least 1 of these courses must be chosen from the following: G600, G603, G702. Students may petition for no more than 1 non-GNDR course to count towards the minor; the Director of Graduate Studies must deem such a course to have significant Gender Stud­ies content. A maximum of 3 credits may be transferred from graduate work completed at another university, provided the Director of Graduate Studies approves the course content.  Plans for the minor must be made in consultation with the Director of Graduate Studies.


Only grades of B (3.0) and above will count for credit.


None required. A Gender Studies faculty member may be in­vited to attend the student’s oral qualifying examination.

Academic Bulletins

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