Gender, Women's, and Sexuality Studies logo in front of bookshelves

Welcome to the website of Appalachian's Gender, Women's and Sexuality Studies (GWS) program! Gender, Women's and Sexuality Studies is an interdisciplinary academic field that critically engages beliefs, attitudes, assumptions, and norms about gender, women, and sexuality and their intersections with other axes of difference including race, ability, nationality, and class. Studying GWS equips students with critical analytical skills necessary to understand how power works in national and transnational contexts and to address and offer creative solutions to issues of equity, diversity, and social justice in our world today.

Appalachian's Gender, Women's and Sexuality Studies Program is an interdisciplinary degree-granting program housed in the Department of Interdisciplinary Studies. Two core faculty and our many faculty affiliates represent diverse disciplines, departments, and colleges on campus. At the undergraduate level, we offer a GWS B.A., a GWS minor, a Girls' Studies minor, and an LGBT Studies minor. At the graduate level, we offer a 12-hour graduate certificate and a 9-hour graduate minor in GWS.

We are proud to be the oldest program in the UNC system and the second oldest in the state. Students who major, minor, and take courses in GWS acquire critical skills and insight that will equip them to become leaders and pursue their dreams for a more just, inclusive world. GWS students transform themselves, their workplaces, and their communities!

For more information about Appalachian's Gender, Women's, and Sexuality Studies program, contact


Dr. Janet Jakobsen to speak during GWS Lecture Series

Janet R. Jakobsen is Chair and Claire Tow Professor of Women's, Gender and Sexuality Studies at Barnard College, Columbia University.  She served...

GWS Fall 2019 Lecture Series

Fall 2019 Lecture Series Wednesday, September 11 - Belinda Walzer, Assistant Professor of English, Affiliate Faculty of Gender, Women’s, and Se...

Lola Benfield - 2019 Frances Holland Black Scholarship Recipient

Lola Benfield, a graduate student in Political Science at Appalachian State University from Morganton, North Carolina, has been named the winner of th...