The Women’s and Gender Studies Program at Boston College takes an intersectional-based approach to the academic study of women’s and gender-focused issues in the United States and the world. Founded in 1983, WGS is one of the oldest interdisciplinary programs at Boston College.

About the Women’s and Gender Studies Program

The Women's and Gender Studies Program is an interdisciplinary forum for the study of women's past and present position in society. The concept of gender relations is considered a primary factor in our understanding of women's roles in various institutions and societies. The program analyzes the similarities and differences among women as a result of such factors as race, class, religion, and sexuality.

The Women’s and Gender Studies Program is student-centered and holistically informed. Employing a transnational feminist pedagogical model, the WGS curriculum enables students to analyze gender and sexuality through lenses of identity and intersectionality. Students will learn not only how to critically explore issues of inequality and power in the classroom but will gain the tools to prudently engage with these topics beyond it.

By successfully completing the program, students cultivate skills invaluable to their professional and personal success. Past alumni have gone onto illustrious careers in public policy, healthcare, law, and higher education, among others.



Understanding the critical role of women, gender, and identity in society is central to success in every field of knowledge today, from the study of public policy and law to healthcare and the arts. Wherever your academic interests lie, a minor in Women’s and Gender Studies will enable you to push the boundaries of knowledge in traditional fields to address the issues that matter most to you.



A graduate certificate from the Women’s and Gender Studies Program provides you with the foundational tools to complete gendered analyses in your respective research endeavors. The program is structured around a group of interdisciplinary courses offered each semester at Boston College in the social sciences and humanities, and also provides students with access to the courses, resources, and academic networks offered by the Graduate Consortium in Women's Studies (GCWS) housed at MIT.

Janet James Award

Every year, the Janet James Award is presented to an undergraduate Boston College senior in recognition of their research endeavors, academic achievements, and personal commitment to women's and gender issues. The award is given in remembrance of Janet James, a Boston College professor and pioneer in the field of women's history.

Course Spotlight

Introduction to Feminism

This introductory course offers both an overview and a foundation for understanding the various movements that make up what has come to be called the feminist movement in the U.S. Because systems of privilege and disadvantage shape women's and men's identities and social positions in multiple and unique ways, Introduction to Feminisms analyzes gender from an interdisciplinary approach and applies numerous academic disciplinary methods to the study of gender, including history, literature, psychology, and sociology, and explores women's and men's experiences within various cultural contexts, including socioeconomic class, race and ethnicity, religion and spirituality, nations of citizenship, origin, and generation.

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