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University of Cambridge Centre for Gender Studies


Live Q&A with UCCGS PhD Director for prospective applicants

The Centre will be holding live Q&A sessions for prospective applicants to the PhD in Multi-disciplinary Gender Studies 2023-24 with Dr Lauren Wilcox, PhD Director on Thursday 10 November 2022 at 4.00 pm GMT and Friday 11 November 2022 at 9.00 am GMT. If you would like to attend, please register via Eventbrite.


The PhD in Multi-disciplinary Gender Studies (PhD-MGS) is designed to introduce students from a wide variety of academic backgrounds to the traditions, methods and front-line research that shape gender analyses through a series of seminars, lectures and events as well as close personal supervision.

The PhD in Multi-disciplinary Gender Studies is structured as a three year programme with an expectation that PhD students will submit a full draft of their thesis at the end of the third year or soon after. Students should submit their thesis for examination by viva during their 4th year, if not before. From 2023, the PhD in Multi-disciplinary Gender Studies will also be offered as a part-time programme, which students will be expected to complete over the course of 5-7 years.

The PhD in Multi-disciplinary Gender Studies programme includes a PhD seminar, a Multi-disciplinary gender research seminar, a series of speaker events and for those who have not read the MPhil in Multi-disciplinary Gender Studies, two further courses:

  • Theory, Controversy and Methodology (MGS 1)
  • Gender and Methods (MGS 2)

Theory, Controversy and Methodology is organised as a set of lectures that will focus on examples of key thinkers. The lectures will be followed by seminars organised around group discussion of texts that either draw methodologically on the approaches portrayed in the lectures, or texts that critique them. In this way, and across the course, the aim is for students to see how ideas travel through texts, theoretical debates and disciplines enabling development of innovative approaches.

Gender and Methods provides students with practical training for their thesis research. This element of the programme is organised as a combination of both internal and centrally run methods sessions tailored to research interests.

 [NB: Students who have completed the MPhil in Multi-disciplinary Gender Studies need not follow MGS 1 and MGS 2]. 

Each PhD student will work with a Principal Supervisor who will guide their research. Students are required to successfully complete their first year assessment in order to register fully for the PhD programme and are required to undergo two further annual reviews.

Throughout the programme, students are encouraged to debate ideas and concepts and will have the opportunity to interact with world-leading experts in gender theory including the Diane Middlebrook and Carl Djerassi Visiting Professorship.

In addition to the two core courses above, the Multi-disciplinary Gender Research Seminar will convene at least four times a term Michaelmas (Autumn) and Lent (Spring) only. The purpose of this seminar series is to present front-line research in the multi-disciplinary study of Gender by senior scholars within and beyond Cambridge, as well as by junior academics, post-doctoral research fellows and advanced graduate students. These seminars will also be a compulsory component of the PhD.