LGBT Minor

Program / Requirements / Courses / Resources / Scholarships

Declaring the LGBT Minor

Gender and Women’s Studies has an innovative interdisciplinary undergraduate minor program in Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender Studies. Interested students in any major can earn a minor in LGBT Studies by completing four required core courses (one lower division and three upper division) and two upper division elective courses approved for the minor program.

For details on how to declare the LGBT Minor click here.

What is LGBT Studies?

LGBT Studies works to establish sexuality as a crucial category of analysis in the humanities and social sciences. It draws on disciplines such as anthropology, sociology, psychology, history, literature, and cultural studies, in order to document the extent to which sexuality itself is a complex cultural and historical phenomenon that bears careful examination. Just as Women’s Studies, for instance, is not only by, about, and for women, LGBT Studies is not only by, about, or for lesbian, gay, bisexual, or trangendered people, but includes all humanity in its purview.

Alarge portion of the energy spent developing this field has been devoted to discovering (and recovering) the history, dynamics, and complexities of same-sex relationships. Both those relationships and their study have had to combat a variety of delegitimizing forces originating from numerous social locations. The study of same-sex relationships within LGBT Studies has intended to provide legitimacy to those kinds of relationships, to the communities of people organized around and involved in those relationships, and to the history of those people and those communities. In working toward this end, the field of LGBT Studies has necessarily worked to theorize the concept, practice, and history of sexuality itself; it has learned to examine the various ways intimacies and sexual experiences are constructed and perceived in different periods, cultures, and social classes. The field of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Studies thus both addresses the particularities of the modern forms of sexuality we call lesbian, gay, bisexual, and trangendered (forms of sexuality that have only recently been able to claim for themselves the right to serious academic study), and further addresses the phenomenon of sexuality itself in all its historical and cross-cultural diversity.

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  • A total of six (6) courses are required for the minor.
  • All courses must be completed on a letter-graded basis.
  • No more than one course can be used to satisfy both the minor and major requirements.
  • At least three upper-division courses used to satisfy the minor must be taken at Berkeley.
  • Students must achieve at least a C average (2.0) in the upper division courses to satisfy the minor.
  • You must declare your minor with the GWS Undergraduate Adviser (UA) no later than the semester before your Expected Graduation Term (EGT). If the semester before EGT is fall or spring, the deadline is the last day of RRR week. If the semester before EGT is summer, the deadline is the final Friday of Summer Sessions.
  • To declare, students must complete the Minor Worksheet and submit it to the (UA) in 608 Social Sciences Building.
  • After completing ALL minor courses, fill out the Completion of L&S Minor Form (obtain from L&S Office of Undergraduate Advising in 156 Dwinelle Hall or and submit it to the dept. UA.
  • Students who did not declare the minor before their EGT may submit a Completion of L&S Minor Form after the fourth week of their EGT. This form will be used to both declare and determine completion of minor for students in their final term

Courses for the Minor

 GWS/LGBT Course Lists

1. Lower division introductory course:

  • LGBT 20AC: Sexual Politics and Queer Organizing in the US (Please note that Sociology 135 can be used in substitution of this course ONLY during semesters that LGBT 20AC is NOT being offered).

2. Upper division course on the History of Sexuality:

  • LGBT 145/Comparative Literature 185/English 171 – Interpreting the Queer Past: Methods and Problems in the History of Sexuality

3 – Upper division course on Questions of Representation (choose one):

  • LGBT 146
  • LGBT C146A/Gender & Women’s Studies C146A – Cultural Representation of Sexualities: Queer Literary Culture
  • LGBT C146B/Gender & Women’s Studies C146 – Cultural Representations of Sexualities: Queer Visual Culture

4 – Upper division course on Trans-Cultural Studies of Sexuality (choose one):

  • LGBT C147B/Anthropology C147B: Sexuality, Culture and Colonialism
  • LGBT C148/Ethnic Studies C126: Ethnicity, Gender and Sexuality

5/6 – Electives:

  • In addition, two upper division elective courses from LGBT or GWS are required. These are to be chosen from a list of electives approved for the minor program. To download the list of LGBT approved courses click here.

For details on how to declare the minor click here.

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LGBT Services for Students

Gender Equity Services


Each year applications are accepted for the Markowski-Leach Scholarships. These are awards of $1,250 made through the Horizons Foundation in San Francisco for LGBTQ graduate and undergraduate students who plan to attend UC Berkeley, Stanford University, or San Francisco State University. Incoming freshman are eligible to apply. Please see their website for further details and application instructions:

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Student Awards

David Getman Memorial Award in LGBT Minor Studies

2024 Awardee: C McManus
2023 Awardee: Ellen Collins
2021 Awardee: Kelly Baird and Tristen Mayer
2020 Awardee: Sara Madani
2019 Awardee: Neena Mohan
2018 Awardee: Zury Chavez