Graduate Admissions

Admission to the Program

In order to be admitted to the program, students must meet all general University requirements. They must also complete an academic program (major or minor) in Women and Gender Studies at an accredited institution prior to matriculation. Certificate programs or concentrations may also suffice. Please contact the WGS Graduate Coordinator if you have questions. Before beginning the process, please go to the Division of Graduate Studies webpage.

For admission for Fall 2019, the Department of Women and Gender Studies deadline is stated below. This academic year is the second year where San Francisco State University is instituting an online application via CAL STATE APPLY.


Once you have chosen to apply to the Master of Arts program in Women and Gender Studies, please complete the following:

  • A Personal Statement. In 750 words or less, the applicant must: describe their academic background, intentions, and goals, including experience in women and gender studies; include a rationale for pursuing an M.A. degree and the relation of the M.A. degree in WGS to prior academic work and career objectives. A well-written statement of purpose exhibits academic preparedness for graduate school and articulates academic goals that can be supported by the methodological and intellectual interests and expertise of the department's faculty.
  • For admission to the University, potential graduate students are required to possess a cumulative GPA no lower than 3.0 in the final 60 units of their undergraduate career.

  • Two (2) Letters of Recommendation are required from individuals with direct knowledge of the applicant's scholarly ability. These letters should speak to the applicant's academic readiness for graduate-level studies and are usually from professors who have knowledge of the applicant's academic performance and interest in WGS. All letters are submitted via CalState Apply.
  • International students must have TOEFLS / IELTS.
  • The WGS department does not require GRE scores; however applicants may include them.

  • A resume or CV is optional.


Profile of a Successful Graduate Candidate

Each year, the Women and Gender Studies Graduate Admissions Committee receives more applications than can be accepted. In reviewing applications, the committee focuses particularly on three things:

  1. A strong academic transcript in women and gender studies or related fields (for Fall 2017 the average overall GPA of accepted applicants was 3.61);

  2. A well-written personal statement that exhibits academic preparation for graduate school and articulates academic goals that can be supported by the methodological and intellectual interests and expertise of the department’s faculty; and

  3. Letters of recommendation that speak to the student’s academic readiness for graduate-level studies.

For questions about the application process, please contact the Women and Gender Studies graduate coordinator, Professor Deborah Cohler (

Deadlines to apply for the MA program will be  

Block 1: 

January 15th: committee will make decisions by Feb 15 

Block 2:

March 15th: committee will make decisions by April 30th

We do not admit students in the spring semesters.