The M.Phil. in Gender and Women's Studies provides a critical understanding of the current scholarship on the position and representation of gender in society. Drawing on insights and perspectives from a number of academic fields within the Humanities and Social Sciences, the course is both interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary, training students to research across a range of disciplines. Its students acquire a deep understanding of the cultural contexts in which theories of gender are produced, performed and negotiated and an ability to use primary source material as well as critical theories and scholarship. The course also hones the sort of analytical, written, and verbal communication skills that are highly valued and effective in a many different careers.
All students take the core modules Gender Theories, Gender Research Seminar and Approaches to Gender Research, which provide a grounding in key approaches and skills. Students choose further modules from a wide range of electives, varying from year to year. These include both special topics and further skills and methodologies training options, allowing students to build specific skills and to follow their individual interests. Recently offered modules include: Gender and Symbolic Violence; Gender, Art and Identity; Gender and War in the 20th Century; Saints and Sanctity in Ireland, Britain and Europe; Gender, Identity and Authority in 18th century France; Gender and Nation in Irish Writing; Approaches to Historical Research; Libraries and Archives; Curating Art in Theory and Practice. The capstone of the course is a dissertation of 15,000-20,000 words on a research topic in the area of Gender and Women's Studies selected by the student, carried out under the supervision of a member of the teaching staff of the course.