Minors and Certificates

Minor in Gender, Women & Sexuality Studies

The Minor in Gender, Women & Sexuality Studies is a perfect complement to majors across any discipline: from American & Ethnic Studies, to Biology, to Educational Studies. The minor positions students to examine social, political, and cultural realities shaped by gender, sexuality, and power. GWSS approaches topics from transnational and intersectional perspectives, enabling students to analyze and address issues of gender, sexuality, and social difference at personal, historical, institutional, and structural levels.

Students who may benefit from the minor:

  • Women and underrepresented minorities in STEM areas in need of a supportive learning community.
  • Students pursuing careers in education or healthcare fields.
  • Students pursuing graduate school in the humanities, social sciences, or law.
  • Students pursuing careers in policy, advocacy, human rights, or community based non-profit organizations.
  • Students pursuing careers in business areas where demonstrating a capacity to work with diverse communities is an asset.

Minor Requirements

Students pursuing the Minor in Gender, Women & Sexuality Studies must complete a minimum of 25credits in the following areas:

  • 5 Credits in Core Course in Gender, Women & Sexuality Studies - BISGWS 301 Critical Gender and Sexuality Studies
  • 20 Credits in Coursework in Gender Women & Sexuality Studies - Students are required to take at least 15 credits at the 300 or 400 level coursework.

Note: Students pursuing the GWSS Major will not be able to pursue the GWSS minor. Students pursuing a different major offered by IAS will be able to count up to 10 credits toward their IAS major and the GWSS minor.

Core Course - 5 Credits

BISGWS 301 Critical Gender & Sexuality Studies (5 credits) : Explores how sex, gender and sexuality studies has emerged. Examines intersections of gender and sexuality with race, ethnicity, dis/ability, class and nation in order to understand the key terms guiding inquiry in gender and sexuality studies.

GWSS Coursework - 20 Credits

GWSS elective courses must either focus on gender, women, and sexuality studies histories, themes, and experiences and/or use theoretical frameworks and methods grounded in gender, women, and sexuality studies approaches.

Students must take 20 credits course from the following GWSS approved coursework (*at least 15 credits of course work must be at the 300 or 400 level):

  Prefix & Number     Course Title  
BIS 219 The Politics of Sex Education
BIS 221 Gender and Sexuality
BIS 224 Introduction to Feminist Studies
BIS 310 Women, Culture, and Development
BIS 324 Gender, Human Rights and Global Cinema
BIS 368 Women's Lives in Context
BIS 369 Women Across Cultures
BIS 387 Women and American Literature
BIS 431 Issues in Sexual Politics and Cultures
BIS 433 Gender, Work, and Family
BIS 436 Comparative Family Systems
BIS 455 Literature and Sexuality
BIS 463 U.S. Women's History
BIS 471 Women in Art
BIS 486 Studies in Women and Literature
BISAES 368 Sex, Love, Romance
BISGWS 302 History and Movements of Gender and Sexuality
BISGWS 303 Approaches to Feminist Inquiry
BISSEB 331 The Family in U.S. Society

GWSS coursework includes the following approved topics courses:

  Prefix & Number     Title     Topics Course Title  
BIS 316 Topics in Psychology Human Sexuality
BIS 322 Topics in Performance Studies Performing Race and Gender on Film

BIS 341

Topics in the Study of Culture Race, Gender, and Sexuality in Museum Archives
BIS 341 Topics in the Study of Culture Girls on Film
BIS 351 Topics in American Culture Women in Film
BIS 387 Women and American Literature American Women Writers and the Question of Coalition
BIS 480 International Study Abroad Gender, Media, and Human Rights in India
BIS 490 Advanced Seminar The History and Politics of HIV/AIDS
BIS 490 Advanced Seminar Gender and the Politics of Numbers
BIS 490 Advanced Seminar Regulating Sexuality-Activism Policy and Everyday Life
BIS 490 Advanced Seminar Gender, Law, & Policy
BIS 490 Advanced Seminar Women, Race, and Class
BIS 490 Advanced Seminar Hollywood Cinema, Gender and Sexuality
BIS 490 Advanced Seminar Commercial Sex Work, Sexual Health, and Global Human Rights
BIS 490 Advanced Seminar Sex Work, Human Trafficking, and Social Justice
BIS 490 Advanced Seminar Theory and Practice of Queer and Trans Media
BIS 490 Advanced Seminar Culture and Resistance in the Americas
BIS 490 Advanced Seminar Race, Gender, and Sexuality in Science Fiction
BIS 490 Advanced Seminar Gender Violence, Policing and the Law
BIS 490 Advanced Seminar Participatory Action Research to Address Sexual and Relationship Violence @ UWB
BISSTS 497 Advanced Topics in Science & Technology Gender, Race, Science, and Medicine

GWSS courses from other UW Bothell Schools include:

Prefix & Number Course Title
B EDUC 461 Educational Implications of Gender Inequality
B HLTH 223 Feminist Approaches to Women's Health
B HLTH 420 Women's Global Health and Human Rights
CSS 205 Women in STEM Seminar: College Life
CSS 405 Women in STEM Seminar: Career/Professional Life

Learning Objectives

Students minoring in Gender, Women & Sexuality Studies will be able to:

  1. Think critically about the operation of gender and sexuality at personal, institutional, and structural levels.
  2. Situate and analyze gender and sexuality at local, national, and transnational levels.
  3. Critically examine the intersection of gender and sexuality with other vectors of identity, power, and privilege such as race, ethnicity, nationality, class, age and ability.
  4. Undertake critical interdisciplinary research that understands the role of cultural norms and assumptions especially, but not limited to, gender and sexuality in knowledge production.
  5. Collaborate with peers and off campus communities to engage in scholarly and creative activities that intervene in existing debates and create new ways of engaging issues of gender and sexuality.
  6. Write and communicate clearly about feminist theories and manifestations of power and resistance.


Interested students should review the minor requirements and declare the minor as early as possible. To declare or receive advising on the IAS minor, please call IAS Undergraduate Office at (425) 352-5350 to make an advising appointment, email IAS Advisors at iasadv@uw.edu.

Advisor for this minor:   

Jessica Trenkamp