Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer Studies

Certificate Program

The Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer (LGBTQ) Studies Certificate Program, housed administratively in the Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies Program (WGSS), is a campus-wide program open to students in any major. Consistent with UWGB’s problem-focused, interdisciplinary traditions, course work is available across a broad range of fields, including, but not limited to WGSS, Democracy and Justice Studies, Human Development, History, English, and Humanities. The certificate also includes additional training in diversity and the development of a participant-directed, high-impact practice such as an internship, research project, or other practicum.

The LGBTQ Studies Certificate Program provides participants with a background in the history and lived experiences of Gender, Sexuality, and Romantic Minorities (GSRMs). The Certificate is participant-driven, allowing those enrolled to select courses and experiences directed by areas of interest (e.g., persons interested in the helping professions may seek a relevant internship in Human Development, Social Work, or Psychology; literary fans could study GSRMs through English electives and stage a reading of Oscar Wilde; the possibilities are endless). As such, the Certificate allows participants to work with an Advisor to cater the Certificate to their interests. For some, this could involve completing coursework across a number of different program areas; others will find that clustering coursework within a narrow field is most appropriate.

The certificate is available to current students majoring in any field and members of the community who wish to think informatively and critically about the lives and contributions of LGBTQ people, to respect the dignity of LGBTQ people, and to understand and interact with a culture that contributes to the diversity of our world.  A defining feature of this Certificate is completion of a participant-directed, high-impact practice, some examples include activities such as a(n):

  • independent study: Queer Theory symposium; contribute to building the LGBTQ archive at the Cofrin Library
  • honors project: stage a public reading of a play by Oscar Wilde
  • internship: volunteer at a local organization working with at-risk LGBTQ youth; develop and promote LGBTQ-themed programs for the Student Union
  • research assistantship: assisting a faculty member on relationship study with same-sex couples; oral history of LGBTQ elders

Participants completing an LGBTQ Studies Certificate should demonstrate knowledge of the following concepts and issues:

  1. The socio-cultural and historical construction of gender and sexual identities.
  2. Intersectionality of gender and sexuality with race/ethnicity, religion, class, and nationality.
  3. How to effectively challenge bigotry, inequality, and systems of oppression, including those based on gender and sexuality.
  4. Major issues pertaining to the lives of LGBTQ people, historically and in contemporary societies (e.g. representations of LGBTQ individuals; the impact of queer culture on the dominant culture; violence; relationships between LGBTQ individuals/communities and institutions such as the medical and mental health professions, the law, religion, the media, education, and the military; family; and the LGBTQ Community and work.

Students must complete Ally Training I and II prior to declaring the certificate.

Required Courses6
Introduction to Women's & Gender Studies
3 credit student-directed high impact practice 1
Elective options 29
Gender and the Law
History of Sexuality in the U.S.
Sociology of Sexual and Intimate Relations
Introduction to LGBTQ Studies
Total Credits15