We at the Department of Gender and Women's Studies stand with UA’s Institute for LGBT Studies to “vehemently oppose the continued attack on transgender rights. We stand in solidarity with our trans* family, friends, colleagues, and community and are committed to support movement toward inclusive education in Arizona, which encompasses trans* peoples’ right to participate in sports and athletic teams.”

Graduate Certificate

The GWS Graduate Certificate is intended for students who already have completed a BA; they may be enrolled in MA programs or be working professionals seeking to enhance their understanding of feminist theory and feminist social movements and other aspects of gender and women’s studies relevant to their interests. (Non-GWS PhD students may take the Certificate but are encouraged to enroll in the GWS PhD Minor and include GWS faculty, content and approaches in their Comprehensive Exams and Dissertation.)


See below for application components.

Inquires should contact our Graduate Advisors for more information.


Graduate Certificate in Gender and Women's Studies Requirements

The GWS Graduate Certificate is intended for students who already have completed a BA: they may be enrolled in other graduate programs at UA or be working professionals seeking to enhance their understanding of feminist theory and feminist social movements and other aspects of gender and women’s studies relevant to their interests. (Students enrolled in a PhD program at the UA should consider the PhD Minor in Gender and Women's Studies.)

Students wishing to undertake the certificate must apply to the Graduate College and the GWS Department (https://apply.grad.arizona.edu/users/login). Accepted students will be awarded a certificate upon completion of 4 GWS graduate seminars (12 units) with a grade of B or higher. Two must come from the following list:


GWS 539A Feminist Theories I
GWS 539B Feminist Theories II
GWS 639 Feminist and Related Social Movements

The remaining two courses may be any 500-level (or above) courses offered by core Gender and Women's Studies faculty or officially cross-listed with GWS. Students may repeat GWS539A and GWS539B one time each for credit that is applicable to a GWS PhD major, PhD minor, MA, or Concentration, on the condition that the syllabus for the course is substantially different from the earlier offering. Course eligibility will be determined by the Director of Graduate Studies or, if a conflict of interest, the Department Head.  Repeat enrollment will be treated as a normal GWS elective course.  Repeat enrollment will have no bearing on PhD Qualifying procedures tied to these courses.

Certificate students should meet with the GWS Director of Graduate Studies (DGS) for advising and applicants are strongly encouraged to meet with the DGS prior to submitting their application.


Student Admission

  1. Prerequisites
    • A baccalaureate degree is required.
    • Acceptance into the UA Graduate School is required.
  2. Concurrent Enrollment
    • Concurrent enrollment in a degree program is permitted in UA Graduate Programs outside of the Graduate Program in Gender and Women's Studies. It is not required, however.
  3. Residency Requirement
    • None
  4. Transfer Credits
    • The Department is willing to accept up to 6 transfer credits from other institutions for the Graduate Certificate. Credits may not replace the 6 credits of required courses but must be used as the elective component of the Certificate.
  5. Student Advising
    • The Director of Graduate Studies for Gender and Women's Studies will do the primary advising, although the entirety of the core Gender and Women's Studies faculty will be available to students enrolled or interested in the Certificate Program.
  6. Transfer from Certificate to Degree Program
    • Certificate students wishing to apply for our Graduate Program are free to do so by following the standard application procedure and timetables. Their applications will be considered competitively along with others. Upon acceptance to the Graduate Program within five years of certification, nine credits could be accepted toward a graduate degree in Gender and Women's Studies.


Admission Procedure

Students applying to The University of Arizona's Certificate Program in Gender and Women's Studies degree program should hold a baccalaureate degree or its equivalent by the date of entry into the program. A background in feminist theory is strongly recommended. 

Students must be accepted through the Graduate College, following their standard application for Admission for Graduate Study.

Applications will be accepted on a rolling admission process.


Application Requirements

Note: You will be able to upload your most of your application materials to the online application.

1. Statement of Interest.  Please write a 1,000 word essay explaining your intentions in pursuing a Gender and Women's Studies Certificate. Be as specific as you can about the areas of feminist work that interest you the most, your career goals, and why the Program at the University of Arizona suits your needs. What experiences have you had that make you a strong candidate for the Certificate Program?

2. Curriculum Vitae.   Your CV should include:

  • Education (degrees you have received or anticipate);
  • Academic employment (such as teaching or research positions), whether paid or  unpaid;
  • Non-academic employment (including internships);
  • Honors, prizes, awards, scholarships, and memberships in honor societies and professional organizations;
  • Published articles, papers presented at professional meetings, screenings or other public presentations of your creative work creative and other work that is appropriate to Gender and Women's Studies
  • Any other activities or accomplishments that you feel are relevant to this application (e.g. extra-curricular activities during college or graduate school or substantial engagement with a non-profit or activist organizations not already listed under employment.

3. One Letter of Recommendation. The Department of Gender and Women's Studies requires each applicant to have one letter of recommendation that speaks to your academic, activist, and/or employment-based preparation and motivation for undertaking a certificate.

For further information email Darcy Roman-Felix at roman@email.arizona.edu.


Financial Aid

At the moment we are unable to offer Certificate Students any financial aid. (Students already enrolled in other degree-seeking programs should check their home units.) We hope that this will change in the future.



Key Word(s) of the Page: