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Advanced Graduate Certificate in 

Women's, Gender, & Sexuality Studies
 
The Advanced Graduate Certificate in Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies trains students already enrolled in graduate degree-granting programs and those admitted to the free-standing certificate program as interdisciplinary feminist researchers. Students who complete the WGSS Certificate program will be able to 1) map out histories of feminist thought and social movements; 2) apply feminist, queer, and trans theories in their writing and research; and 3) develop interdisciplinary problem-based methods applicable within and beyond the university.

 Since its emergence as a distinct field of inquiry within the academy, Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies has sought to intervene in disciplinary knowledge paradigms by raising questions about how we come to know what we know, who gets to speak and for whom, and what counts as legitimate fields of inquiry. The WGSS Certificate program invites students to question the methods and histories of traditional disciplines and to interrogate the categories through which knowledge is produced (including, but not limited to, “women,” “gender,” and “sexuality”). Through these self-reflexive engagements, students who complete the certificate will be better equipped to execute innovative gender- and sexuality-focused research projects and participate in the interdisciplinary transformations defining the twenty-first century.

The WGSS Department has over 50 associated faculty members from more than 15 different programs in the arts, humanities, social sciences, and health sciences. Our certificate program is designed to allow students working toward degrees in fields like Art, Music, English, History, Philosophy, Psychology, or Sociology to build intellectual community with other feminist researchers on campus and to work with faculty who have expertise on gender and sexuality across the disciplines. As such, the WGSS Certificate affords graduate students with an unusually rich interdisciplinary experience.

What are the requirements for the WGSS Graduate Certificate?
Students must complete a minimum of 15 graduate credits (which is the equivalent of five graduate courses) approved for the WGSS Graduate Certificate. You are required to take three core courses (9 credits) and two elective courses (6 credits).
 
  Core Courses:
        WST 600: Feminist Interdisciplinary Histories and Methods (offered every Spring)
        WST 601: Feminist Theories (offered every Fall)
        WST 698: Practicing WGSS/Teaching Practicum (offered every Spring)
 
Elective Courses:
You have a great deal of flexibility in terms of what you take for your two elective courses.

WST 610. During most semesters, the WGSS department offers at least one section of WST 610: Advanced Topics in WGSS. Different instructors teach the course each semester, so every iteration covers a new topic. Recent topics include “Fertility & Finance,” “Performance Studies,” “Feminist Media Cultures,” and “Erotic Labor & the Production of Desire.” Certificate students are encouraged to enroll in these courses!

WGSS-Themed Seminars with Associated Faculty. You can also take any 500-level or 600-level gender- or sexuality-themed courses offered by WGSS Associated Faculty in your home department or any other graduate program.

Each semester, WGSS compiles a list of elective courses being offered by our Associated Faculty. All of these classes count toward the certificate. If there is a course that you think should count but does not appear on our list, please contact the WGSS Graduate Program Director. We rely on our certificate students to help us keep our list of electives up to date!

Recent courses offered by Associated Faculty include “Decolonize This!,” “Media Aesthesis,” “Queer Ecologies,” “Global Borderlands,” “Postwar Art & Politics,” “Disability Studies & Literature,” “Flesh, Bodies, & Consumption,” “Feminism, Visibility, & Space,” “Race, Gender, & Globalization,” “Sociology of Human Rights,” “Global Carceral Regimes,” and “Women’s Cinema in Spain & Latin America.”

*WGSS-Themed Directed Reading with Associated Faculty. If courses are not available for a particular topic, students may arrange to complete a directed reading with a WGSS Associated Faculty. You must contact the WGSS Graduate Program Director to request approval of this arrangement.

*Note: Only one elective course (3 credits) can be a directed reading.

Approved credits earned toward a graduate degree in another program may be applied toward the WGSS Certificate. Students should consult with their home programs to determine whether credits earned for the certificate can be applied to the master’s or doctoral degree.

Students are responsible for reviewing, understanding, and abiding by the university’s regulations and requirements for  Secondary Programs and Advanced Graduate Certificates .

How do I enroll in the certificate program?
If you are already completing a degree at Stony Brook and are ready to enroll in the WGSS Certificate, you should head to our Application for Admission to the Graduate Certificate website.

Here, you will be asked to fill out a brief Google Form, which will let the WGSS Department know of your interest in the certificate program. You will also find detailed instructions on how to complete the “Permission to Enroll in a Secondary Certificate Program” form (which is required by the Graduate School).

Once you get your paperwork signed by your Graduate Program Director and, if applicable, your International Advisor, you can email the form to the WGSS Graduate Program Coordinator who will take care of the final steps. If you have any questions about the enrollment process, please contact the WGSS Graduate Program Coordinator.

When should I enroll in the certificate program?
As soon as possible! If you are thinking you’d like to complete the WGSS Certificate, then you should probably sign up right now. The Graduate School has strict rules that prohibit students from retroactively counting more than 2 courses (6 credits) toward a graduate certificate. In other words, you must take at least three certificate-related courses (9 credits) after being officially accepted into the WGSS Certificate program.

The best way to avoid any trouble is to enroll in the certificate program early. There are no additional costs associated with enrolling in a graduate certificate, and there are no penalties if, later on, you are unable or decide not to complete the WGSS certificate. Save yourself the headache, and sign up sooner rather than later.

What should I do when I finish the certificate requirements?
Once you’ve completed the required five courses (15 credits), you are ready to graduate from the WGSS Certificate program. You don’t have to wait until you finish your main degree. As you’re completing your certificate coursework, contact the Graduate Program Coordinator who will guide you through the final steps. Claim your WGSS Graduate Certificate, and add it to your curriculum vitae!
 
What if I have questions?
 If you have questions about academic matters, certificate requirements, or coursework issues, contact Liz Montegary (Graduate Program Director) at l iz.montegary@stonybrook.edu .

 If you have questions about enrolling in or graduating from the certificate program, please contact Jackie Donnelly (Graduate Program Coordinator) at jacqueline.m.donnelly@stonybrook.edu .