Gender and Sexuality Studies (GSS) is an interdisciplinary minor that investigates the significance of sex and gender in all areas of human experience. Grounded in the notion that sexuality and gender are crucial factors in understanding human experience, the Gender and Sexuality Studies minor features courses that investigate and reevaluate the meanings of “male” and “female,” while also focusing on progressive gender-identities that challenge these traditional binaries, such as gay, queer, and transgender. The GSS minor includes courses that reevaluate the assumptions at work in traditional disciplines and expand the study of individuals, cultures, social institutions, social policy and other areas of scholarly inquiry. The GSS minor is designed to encourage students to critically interrogate and actively engage in social processes related to gender and sexuality. The GSS minor is the academic and research arm of the Center for Gender Equity (CGE), the mission of which is to support gender equity through dialogue, programming, service, research, education, and advocacy in order to facilitate collaborative, humane, and sustainable University, local and global communities.
The Gender and Sexuality Studies minor has as its framework 1) the introductory course, 2) the “GSS in Practice” requirement, and 3) topics courses. 1) The introductory course lays the groundwork for the minor by exposing students to the guiding questions, frameworks and theories in Gender and Sexuality Studies. 2) The “GSS in Practice” requirement allows students to apply, outside the classroom, the theoretical constructs covered in GSS courses. The “GSS in Practice” options are mentoring students, working on the staff of the Center for Gender Equity, and engaging in an independent artistic/research project. 3) Elective topics courses concentrate on contemporary issues and provide a multidisciplinary approach to the study of gender and sexuality.
The GSS minor requires students to take a breadth of electives. Students must not take more than 8 elective credits within one of the three schools (Social Sciences, Art & Humanities, and Natural Sciences). Students should plan to take GSS 201 in the spring semester of either their freshman or sophomore year. GSS 201 will be taught only in the spring. Students who wish to declare the Gender and Sexuality Studies minor are advised to do so by the spring of their sophomore year.