Do We Need More Gender Studies Graduates?

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Gender studies is a relatively new field, derived from women’s studies and is heavily influenced by postmodern and poststructuralist theory. It is offered in the field of Social Sciences and Humanities.

Gender studies revolve around the belief that all of social life is gendered, and simultaneously subverts the traditional assumption of what it is like to be a “man” or a “woman”. It focuses on studying the impact gender and sexuality has on our social interactions, and understanding the implications of gender in a social, political and economic point of view. 

Gender studies enables students to get a deeper, intellectual understanding of the ways in which our bodies are sexed, gendered and sexually oriented and how these contribute to current global debates on gender inequality, sexual and reproductive health and rights, and the plurality of sexualities. Students learn to develop connections between gender and sexuality with other facets such as race, class, disability, religion, etc. 

Areas Covered in Gender Studies

Gender studies trains students to think openly, critically and expand their worldview in terms of gender equality, feminism, LGBTQ rights and everything in between. You will develop transferable skills in gender analysis, the ideology of gender equality and social justice that you can apply to several other professions and facets of life in the real world. 

Students are able to establish how gender and sexuality form lenses through which we analyze everyday realities and experiences, and apply feminist and queer lenses to the lived realities of marginalised communities. Gender studies courses teach students to be more empathic, and show understanding and acceptance towards other people and their ideas. Students are able to take part in debates and discussions that challenge their intellectual curiosity, and ultimately help them formulate and express their own ideas essential for innovation and progress of a society or community as a whole. 

Gender studies is about so much more than just women’s rights. Theories of masculinity, and the ways in which they enforce cultural stereotypes on men are also among covered topics. Other areas explored include fighting prejudice and discriminiation, changing and challenging existing, harmful mentalities put in place by social institutions such as families, the laws, religion and media, among others, by implementing diversity, inclusivity and outreach policies. 

A lot of the areas of study involved in gender studies are sensitive but relevant topics in today’s world, which often have personal resonance to students. Students are taught to approach these complex issues mindfully, with cultural sensitivity and with a problem solving, impact and action-oriented mindset in order to find ways to effectively communicate to support their arguments.

The Necessity for Gender Studies

Social dynamics such as gender, ethnicity and sexual orientation often limiting the opportunities for certain minorities is something we still see happening all around the world. Women, people of colour and people with different sexual orientations than what is socially acceptable have not only been denied education and employment opportunities, but a lot of the time, they are not able to speak up for themselves without jeopardising their employment positions, their physical integrity and sometimes residency in their own countries. 

There is a clear urgency for more academic drive towards normalising an idea of a gender that is free from the concept that the female gender is an anomaly, only second to the male and is inherently sexual, and the expectations upon the male gender to be aggressive, bold and harmfully masculine. 

The study of gender is one of the most intellectually challenging and socially important areas in the Humanities and Social Sciences, as it calls for the creation of more inclusive social, economic and political conditions where socially constructed gender expectations and sexual preferences do not restrict opportunity and freedom.

Potential Career Opportunities for Gender Studies Graduates

  • Political / Public Policy Making

  • International Development

  • Health & Social Welfare Organisations

  • Teaching

  • Media Writing & Advertising

  • Marketing & Public Relations

  • Activism

  • Research Organisations

  • Community Sector Agencies / NGOs

  • Journalism

Entry Requirements to Study Gender Studies in Australia

STPM/ GCE A Levels or Equivalent

A minimum score of 9 points

Foundation/ Diploma

Minimum CGPA of 2.0

International Baccalaureate Diploma

A minimum score of 28 points

*The requirements may vary among universities, for inquiries on other entry requirements, contact Excel Education.

English Requirements to Study Gender Studies in Australia

IELTS

A minimum overall of 6.5 and 6.0 in all sub-bands

TOEFL – IBT

A minimum overall score of 85; Minimum17 in Reading, Listening and Speaking and 19 in Writing

TOEFL – PBT

A minimum overall score of 565 and minimum 4.5 in Writing

Pearson Test of English (PTE)

A minimum overall score of 58 and and 50 in all sub-bands

*The requirements may vary among universities, for inquiries on other entry requirements, contact Excel Education.

Recommended Universities to Study Gender Studies in Australia

1. Monash University

Image Credit: Monash University

Program

Bachelor of Arts 


Major: Gender Studies (also offered as an Extended Major & Minor)

Intake

February, July

Duration

3 years (full time)

Indicative Annual Fees (2021)

A$33,000

 

 

2. Deakin University

Image Credit: Deakin University

Program

Bachelor of Arts in Gender & Sexuality Studies

Intake

March, July

Duration

3 years (full time)

Indicative Annual Fees (2021)

A$30,200

 

3. University of Sydney

Image Credit: University of Sydney

Program

Bachelor of Arts & Social Sciences


Major: Gender Studies (also offered as a Minor)

Intake

February, August

Duration

3 years (full time)

Indicative Annual Fees (2021)

A$43,000

 

4. University of Tasmania

Program

Bachelor of Arts


Major: Gender & Diversity

Intake

July

Duration

3 years (full time)

Indicative Annual Fees (2021)

A$31,950

 

5. University of Adelaide

Program

Bachelor of Arts

Major: Gender Studies

Intake

July

Duration

3 years (full time)

Indicative Annual Fees (2021)

A$35,000

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About the Author

Rifqa Abdulla

angsty pisces

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