Women's and Gender Studies

The MA Program in Gender and Social Justice Studies is committed to intersectional analysis of social justice, and we take interdisciplinary approaches to understanding the political, aesthetic, and ethical questions that arise from the study of gender and social justice.  Students will develop the skills necessary to produce independent scholarly analysis, research, and action aimed at social justice and the reduction of social inequalities.

The MA in GSJ is a 12-month (course-based) or 24-month (thesis-based) program in which students participate in Praxis and Research seminars, and complete elective courses in WGS and other related disciplines. Course-based MA students produce a portfolio structured around their unique professional and scholarly goals. Thesis-based MA students produce a graduate thesis under the direction of a professor in our program or otherwise affiliated with the department.

Special features of our program include: 

  • a Praxis Workshop in which students critically interrogate the relationship between social justice theory and practice; topics explored in the workshop may include the relationship between volunteerism, engaged citizenship, and knowledge production for social change; the difference between criminal justice and social justice; and restorative, transformative, and redistributive theories of justice.
  • a Research Workshop in which students will examine interdisciplinary approaches to feminist scholarship.
  • a Capping Portfolio (course-based program) that is tailored to the needs, interests, and discoveries of students. It can take the form of a major research paper, a field statement, a creative work, or a policy document.
  • a specialization in Digital Humanities (course-based program) that provides students with the necessary skills and knowledge to contribute to the growing sector of digital research, teaching, and activism.


Professors in the Department of Women’s and Gender Studies work on a wide variety of feminist research projects and hold research expertise in gender and international development, sexuality and queer studies, critical animal and food studies, feminist religious studies, feminist cultural production, trauma and cultural memory, and more. Additionally, the undergraduate and graduate programs are linked to a vibrant community of disciplinary based scholars with research interests and expertise in feminist, gender, and sexuality studies.

Graduate courses planned for the 2018-2019 school year include:

  • Feminist Theory Now - Anthropocene Feminisms
  • Gender Research Workshop
  • Social Justice Praxis Workshop
  • Feminist Cultural Studies - Publishing Feminisms
  • Indigenous Feminisms

The application deadline for Fall 2018 admission is January 15, 2018.

All successful applicants will be considered for limited and competitive funding, but are strongly urged to seek outside funding. Visit Financial Assistance page for more information.


Still have questions? 

Please contact us if our website has failed to answer any of your questions.  

Email us at: 

gsjgrad@ualberta.ca