Women's Studies Scope and Objectives

The Women's Studies Program provides interdisciplinary academic programs that span departments, disciplines, and ideologies. The undergraduate program offers a Bachelor of Arts degree and a minor; the graduate program offers the Master of Arts and Ph.D. degrees.

The programs provide students the opportunity to study the full range of human experience and arrangements of social organization from the perspectives of those whose participation has been traditionally distorted, omitted, neglected, or denied -- women in their racial, class, sexual, national, and cultural diversity. Students develop critical reasoning and analytical skills, research and communication skills, a deep appreciation for complexities of power and asymmetries in gender relations across time, class, and cultures, and conceptual tools for social change. Emphasis on multidisciplinary, multiethnic, and transnational approaches assures a broader exposure to the humanities and social sciences than is commonly available within disciplinary confines. A background in women's studies offers unique contextual validation for today's gender controversies and prepares students for a wide range of career and life choices.

The core faculty members who teach women's studies courses come from various UCLA departments, area studies centers, and professional schools. Many professionals within and outside the University contribute their time, expertise, and enthusiasm. A governance committee composed of the chair, faculty members, and graduate and undergraduate student representatives sets program policies and curricula.

The program sponsors two student associations and assists other student groups with extracurricular programming on feminist issues. Research in women's studies is promoted in cooperation with the Center for the Study of Women.


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