Gender and Women’s Studies
Location: Marion McCain Arts and Social Sciences Building
6135 University Avenue
Room 3010
P.O. Box 15000
Halifax, NS
B3H 4R2
Telephone: (902) 494-2221
Fax: (902) 494-1957


Gender and Women’s Studies is a dynamic and rapidly expanding interdisciplinary area of study. An alternative to the traditional curriculum, Gender and Women’s Studies provides students with the opportunity to examine history, social structures, the sciences, language, literature, and culture from critical and illuminating perspectives.

At Dalhousie, students can currently enter the following programs in Gender and Women’s Studies: a Minor, a Major, a Double Major, or a Combined Honours program. These programs include courses in the disciplines of Economics, English, History, Music, Philosophy, Political Science, Sociology and Social Anthropology, and Theatre, and in interdisciplinary and professional fields, including Contemporary Studies, Early Modern Studies, Health Promotion, International Development, Law, and Nursing.

Students in the Dalhousie Gender and Women’s Studies program develop a critical understanding of gender as a category of analysis in scholarly enquiry, social dynamics, cultural expression, and belief systems. They also investigate the ways in which gender intersects with other variables such as race, class, and cultural difference. They study women’s contributions to civilization in many fields of knowledge, and examine the social and ideological forces that have made these contributions "invisible" in the past. Through exposure to a large and growing body of research in a number of disciplines and fields, Gender and Women’s Studies Majors gain a grounding in the methodologies and concepts shaping the organization and dissemination of knowledge.

Our courses also provide students with opportunities of uniting theory with social and cultural practice, addressing contemporary issues that individuals and institutions are grappling within today’s changing world order. They provide a context in which women can find strength and insight through exchanging experiences and ideas with other women, and a context in which women and men together can further human understanding and equality through exploring and respecting differences.

Do men take Gender and Women’s Studies courses?  Yes. Gender has operated as a fundamental category in the organization of knowledge, social systems, forms of representation and modes of production and consumption. The critical examination of gender is relevant to both men and women.

Degree Programs

Gender and Women’s Studies programs provide preparation for careers in a variety of fields, as well as for professional schools or graduate programs. For example, graduates can work as consultants, policy analysts, and officers in government and para-governmental organizations, in business and industry, and in educational institutions. The fields they enter include employment equity, public administration, international development, health care, work place conditions, personnel relations, publishing and editorial work, and public relations.

For students interested in a preparatory degree, Gender and Women’s Studies programs provide appropriate preparation for professional schools and programs in the fields of education, social work, counselling, journalism, the health professions, and certain areas of law. They also provide suitable preparation for graduate programs in Women’s Studies, Gender Studies, Interdisciplinary Studies, Cultural Studies, and studies in Social Justice. Students interested in proceeding to graduate work should enter a four-year degree program.

Students may enter Gender and Women’s Studies programs in the first, second, or third year of study. In many cases, students in second or third years may already have acquired some Gender and Women’s Studies credits through taking courses in the traditional disciplines or in other interdisciplinary programs that are cross-listed with Gender and Women’s Studies core courses.

NOTE:  In addition to the departmental requirements listed below, students must satisfy the requirements outlined in the Degree Requirements section.