Graduate Certificate in Women’s & Gender Studies

The Graduate Certificate Program in Women’s & Gender Studies is designed for students enrolled in a graduate program in any field who wish to complement their training with an additional specialization in Women’s & Gender Studies.

Eligibility and Admission

To pursue this certificate, students must be enrolled in a graduate degree program or already hold a graduate degree.


  • Students wishing to obtain this certificate must declare their intention by applying to the program office or director.
  • All graduate certificate applicants—even those already enrolled in a UWM graduate program—must apply to the Graduate School through the Panthera Admission Application.
  • Graduate degree and previously admitted graduate non-degree students who decide to pursue a certificate program must submit the Panthera application before completing 6 credits in the certificate sequence.
  • Applicants must possess a baccalaureate degree and have a minimum 2.75 cumulative undergraduate grade point average to be admitted in to a certificate program.

Certificate Requirements

Credits and Courses
The Graduate Certificate in Women’s & Gender Studies requires completion of 15 credits in approved courses with an overall GPA of 3.0. The following are required:
  1. WGS 401 – Global Feminism; U/G, 3 cr. (Students who have previously earned undergraduate credit in this course will substitute, with approval of the DGS, a graduate course with a focus on globalization and women.)
  2. WGS 700 – Feminist Issues and Scholarship, G, 3 cr.
  3. WGS 710 – Advanced Feminist Theory, G, 3 cr.
  4. Electives, 6 credits, selected from a combination of WGS and approved cross-listed Graduate (G) or Undergraduate/Graduate (U/G) courses in other programs and departments.
No more than 6 credits in U/G courses can apply toward the certificate, and a maximum of three credits in independent study may count toward the 15 credits required for the certificate. At least three credits must be taken outside of Women’s & Gender Studies and the student’s home department or discipline (i.e., the program in which the student currently is enrolled as a graduate degree candidate or in which the student has received an advanced degree). Thesis and research credits may not be counted toward the Certificate.

Grade Point Average Requirement
A minimum cumulative 3.00 grade point average in certificate courses taken at UWM is required.

Transfer Credit
No more than 20% of the required credits may be taken at an institution other than UWM. These courses are subject to Graduate School transfer policy and must be approved by the director of the certificate program.

Articulation with Degree Programs

  1. Credits and courses required for a certificate may double count toward meeting UWM graduate degree requirements subject to the following restrictions:
    • Degree programs must approve the courses from certificates that can double count toward the degree.
    • All credits taken in completion of certificate requirements may count towards a UWM graduate degree as long as they do not contribute more than 90% of the total credits needed to obtain the degree. (Note: Students in Ph.D. programs must still complete the minimum residency requirements)
    • Certificate courses used toward meeting degree requirements must be completed within the time limit for transfer credit.
  2. Courses completed for a degree may be counted toward a subsequent certificate, subject to all certificate policy requirements.
  3. A course may count toward no more than one certificate and one degree.
  4. Students may not earn a certificate subsequent to a concentration in the same area.

Time Limit

Certificate program time limits shall be established as follows:

18 or fewer credits/Three years from initial enrollment in the certificate sequence.

19 or more credits/Four years from initial enrollment in the certificate sequence.

For certificates that are designed as add-ons to degree programs and are awarded concurrent with the degree, the time limit shall be the same as that of the degree program.