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Gender Today: Exploring Gender in Contemporary Contexts

Course Code: GSWS 2101
Faculty: Language, Literature & Performing Arts
Credits: 3.0
Semester: 15 weeks
Learning Format: Lecture, Seminar
Typically Offered: TBD. Contact Department Chair for more info.
course overview

Building upon the foundational concepts introduced in GSWS 1100 and/or 1101, this course will involve an in-depth and interdisciplinary exploration of contemporary gender experiences, theories and issues. This exploration will focus on one or more themes, such as gender representations in popular culture, bodies and reproduction and/or gendered violence.

Course Content

Course content will include:

  • focus on contemporary gender themes and concepts;
  • foundation in relevant feminist and queer theory;
  • application of intersectional analysis; and
  • interdisciplinary approaches to thematic content.

Course content may include:

  • analysis of literary works, film or other popular media; and/or
  • required attendance at a relevant off-campus event.

Methods of Instruction

The course will employ a number of instructional methods to accomplish its objectives, including some or all of the following:

  • small and large group discussions;
  • audio-visual materials;
  • internet exploration;
  • interviews;
  • seminar presentations;
  • instructor comments on student work; and/or
  • lectures (including guest lectures).

Means of Assessment

Instructors will follow the parameters laid out in the College Evaluation Policy. Specific evaluation criteria will be provided by the instructor at the beginning of the semester and will vary according to the instructor’s assessment of appropriate evaluation methods and the selected theme of the course. Instructors will use a balance of assignments to assess learning, such as:
  • journal writing;
  • participating in class discussion;
  • essays;
  • research papers;
  • oral presentations (individual and/or group);
  • community life research;
  • tests or quizzes; and/or
  • essay-type exams.
A sample grade breakdown for this course might be as follows:
Course journal 20%
Research paper 30%
Midterm exam 15%
Group project 15%
Final exam 20%

Learning Outcomes

By the end of the course, successful students should be able to:

  1. debate and explore the relationship between gender and biological sex;
  2. interrogate contemporary gender concepts such as the gender binary, gender fluidity and the gender spectrum;
  3. understand and discuss the ways in which social/cultural definitions of gender are affected by intersectional identities and experiences;
  4. engage with feminist and queer theories to analyze contemporary gender issues and social justice struggles; and
  5. apply the course concepts and theories to analyze and interpret particular topics as identified within the course framework.

course prerequisites

GSWS 1100 or GSWS 1101



curriculum guidelines

Course Guidelines for previous years are viewable by selecting the version desired. If you took this course and do not see a listing for the starting semester/year of the course, consider the previous version as the applicable version.

course schedule and availability
course transferability

Below shows how this course and its credits transfer within the BC transfer system. 

A course is considered university-transferable (UT) if it transfers to at least one of the five research universities in British Columbia: University of British Columbia; University of British Columbia-Okanagan; Simon Fraser University; University of Victoria; and the University of Northern British Columbia.

For more information on transfer visit the BC Transfer Guide and BCCAT websites.


If your course prerequisites indicate that you need an assessment, please see our Assessment page for more information.