Info for Prospective Students | Gender, Sexuality, and Women's Studies
University of Pittsburgh

Info for Prospective Students

Major offered:

Gender, Sexuality, and Women's Studies, BA

Enrichment opportunities


Enhances careers in medicine, the creative arts, social work, education, counseling, law, therapy, academia, and business


Each incoming student is assigned an academic advisor within the Dietrich School’s Academic Advising Center. Students are required to meet with their advisor at least once per term before they can enroll in classes for the next term. Students are encouraged to schedule additional appointments as necessary. Students will remain with their assigned advisor until they declare a major; once a major is declared, the student will transition to a new advisor within their major department.

The Gender, Sexuality, and Women's Studies Program is home to a diverse and dynamic community of scholars. Our class sizes are small, which means that whether you take one course or choose to make GSWS your academic home, you will have the chance to work closely with faculty members who are conducting research on leading edge issues. 

Here are some of the unique opportunities our undergraduate students can participate in:

  • Two core courses, general education/seminar-style/diversity-based, with small class size allow ample time to explore individual research projects so students are mentored through the research process at early/introductory stages; seminar style for intro courses on gender/feminism/sexuality permits students in smaller groups to spend a term in discussions around questions of diversity (not lecture-based).
  • The senior research capstone mentors students through a mixed-method approach, strengthening their understanding of knowledge production from an interdisciplinary perspective; consistent focus on dialogue/critical exchange within learning communities; focus on feminist pedagogy, which invites students to engage more directly with teaching/learning as process, and promotes awareness of power as it relates to knowledge production.
  • Extremely active events calendar that connects GSWS scholars from all stages (undergrad, grad, faculty) and offers GSWS students exposure and direct access to cutting-edge scholars working in gender/sexuality studies from Pitt and from other schools. PhD students working in gender studies present with an undergraduate audience in mind so they can see what a PhD does in terms of a dissertation project (mentoring/modeling).
  • Annual undergraduate conference run in tandem with faculty/graduate conference on the same topic, with shared keynote. GSWS Faculty run workshops for each stage of the conference process (abstract-writing, paper-writing, presentation skills). Last year, conference theme was “Gender and the Child” and undergrads presented papers at the Wyndham hotel and attended keynote lunchtime lecture with faculty. Previous themes: Masculinities; Gender and the Body. Next year the theme is “Gender and Science” and GSWS will host a poster session for undergrads.

"I worked with GSWS instructor anupama (anu) jain on a project to identify proven ways to promote an inclusive environment for people of different cultures, races, genders, sexual orientations, religions, etc., at universities like Pitt. With anu’s help, I presented a research poster and helped produce a report providing recommendations to Pitt leaders on how they can help people feel more empowered to talk about differences both in an academic setting and when engaging with peers in social spaces." Destiny Diess (Psychology Major)

Other outside of the classroom opportunities include

  • Off-campus trips and study abroad: LGBTQ NYC (study abroad in summer ‘19), explore the history of LGBTQIA life, art, politics, and activism in NYC. Study abroad program in Rome every other year (Gender/Sustainability).
  • Internships in local gender/sexuality-based communities provide students with the opportunity to apply theory to practice; research capstone introduces students to fieldwork and IRB process; faculty mentors work with students across a range of topics in CBR, independent study, summer research, and study abroad. 

For more information about our department, or to schedule a visit or tour, please contact the Dietrich School's recruitment team at

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