What is Gender Studies about?
Gender Studies matters because every single human being is always being interpreted by others in a gendered manner. Are you masculine enough? Are you feminine enough? Are you straight enough, or gay enough? All of us live within a gender order in which we are constantly bombarded with messages telling us how we ought to ‘do’ our gender and our sexuality.
Accordingly, to study gender and sexuality is to become more aware of the possibilities and constraints of the gender order within which you dwell.
Gender Studies wrestles with questions of gender and power, as well as changing understandings of human bodies and human sexuality. It is an exploration of the meaning and impact of gender and sexual difference upon all aspects of our lives.
We analyse the ways masculinity and femininity are enacted in the world, and develop a critical awareness of the gender orders within which these identities circulate.
"Come and explore historical and contemporary representations of gender and sexuality, and the tangled relations between gender, race, class, sexuality, ethnicity and religion."
Recognising differences without denying them
A new book by Dr Louise Richardson-Self investigates the issue of same-sex marriage through a philosophical lens.
Why study Gender Studies with us?
As one of the University of Tasmania’s longest running interdisciplinary programs, you will explore gender and sexuality from a range of meaningful perspectives.
Learn from staff whose philosophical approach to Gender Studies has contributed to the University of Tasmania's research in Philosophy ranking above world standard*.
Undertake a major (eight units) in Gender Studies on-campus in Hobart, or from anywhere online.
Develop critical thinking, communication and writing skills, and expertise on gender relevant to careers in business, health, social work, education, media and policy-making.
Choose from overseas study opportunities – one week to one year – to get a global perspective on Gender Studies.
What careers relate to Gender Studies?
Modern workplaces are invariably changing; responding to economic, political and social forces, including issues of gender and sexuality. Employers value the insight into gendered assumptions that are so pervasive, they're nearly invisible to those who have not been trained to see them.
Employers depend on people who are effective communicators and decision-makers, with demonstrable skills in critical thinking, problem solving, research and investigation. These abilities are fundamental for graduates in Humanities and Social Sciences, which includes Gender Studies.
- Communications Manager
- Human Resources Manager
- Manager in private and public enterprises
- Marketing and Advertising
- Media Analyst
- Not-for-profit or Volunteer Manager
- Politics or public policy-making
- Public health and welfare
- Public relations
- Social worker
How can I learn about Gender Studies?
Many people who undertake a major in Gender Studies treat it as valuable adjunct to another major in their undergraduate degree. It is also a popular choice as the Arts major in combined degrees such as the Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Law, or the Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Business.
Because Gender Studies is an inter-disciplinary field, the major is composed of core units (which can be identified with HAF in the unit code) and non-core units drawn from other disciplines that explore gender and sexuality. This allows you to explore gender in differing contexts including in Asian Studies, History and Sociology.
Interested in studying with us? Explore our course and research opportunities below.
Each course and unit is linked to its own page with more detailed information and entry requirements on the Courses & Units website.
Your learning experience in Gender Studies goes beyond the lecture and tutorials.
You will be taught by experts, and gain perspective from guest lecturers and forums; gain a competitive advantage with real-world experience prior to graduation; study abroad for a fortnight, a month, a semester or a year, as part of your degree; have options to complete your studies your way, whether on-campus, online, part-time or full-time; pursue your passion or specialisation with a range of scholarships, bursaries and financial assistance programs, or meet your career goals with our pathway options.
Our research in Philosophy & Gender Studies
The program in Philosophy and Gender Studies has particular research strengths in feminist philosophy, Heidegger, Buddhist philosophy, applied epistemology, Ancient Greek philosophy, logic, and philosophy of religion. We conduct research on same-sex marriage, hate speech, and on prominent women in the history of philosophy including Hannah Arendt and Iris Murdoch. Our internationally recognised research expertise spans:
- Ancient Greek philosophy
- Applied epistemology
- Applied ethics, bioethics and neuroethics
- Asian Philosophy
- Continental philosophy
- Feminist philosophy
- Philosophy and religion
- Metaphysics and philosophy of science
- Moral and political philosophy
The University of Tasmania is ranked above world standard in the field of Philosophy*. Our research in Philosophy and Gender Studies is published by leading journals and academic presses, with many members of our team having received, or currently holding, prestigious research grants.
We welcome proposals from qualified applicants to undertake research degrees at both the Masters and PhD levels, and are pleased to discuss proposals that cross disciplinary boundaries.
*State Of Australian University Research 2015–16, Australian Research Council.
Featured Researcher | Dr Louise Richardson-Self
Can legalizing same-sex marriage contribute to ending the discrimination and social stigma faced by lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender men and women (LGBT) in the Western world? Louise points out that this question prompts further questions that the usual case for legalizing same-sex marriage has difficulty answering.
View Louise's full researcher profile Browse our academic staff profiles