Title of the Program: Master of Arts in Gender Studies


The project to develop this curriculum was funded by the Norwegian Council for Universities’ Committeee for Development, Research and Education (NUFU) as part of a five-year agreement between University of Tromso and Addis Ababa University (AAU). This draft proposal  has been prepared based on the background works that have been done by the Centre for the last 13 years. Reviews made on gender studies programs in Africa and other relevant countries and using primary data obtained from the results of a training needs assessment survey conducted on five regions of the country. 

Rationale of the Program  

CERTWID, until now, is the only higher institution devoted to training and research on gender issues in Ethiopia. Given the poor conditions of women in the country on the one hand and the advancement of the discipline on the other hand, a number of reasons could be cited as to why such a higher level training program in gender studies is required.

To mention some: 

  1. The development of the discipline both in African and global context and the need to design a program which is applicable to research h and dev elopement needs of Ethiopia;
  2. The apparent huge disparity between gender in economic, political and social life of the country;
  3. The demand for trained personnel who could plan, implement and evaluate development initiatives from gender perspectives far outstrip supply;
  4. The pronounced interest by governmental agencies and non-governmental organization at the local, national and international level; and above all
  5. Some of those already assigned on positions with responsibility to discharge gender-related duties lack theoretical background to handle the task properly.

Objectives of the MA program  

     2.3.1. Overall Objectives


Profile of the Graduates of Masters Program 

Admission Requirements 

Applicants for admission need to satisfy the following conditions:

7. Course Schedule  

         Year I Semester I

  Course Title Course No. Credit Hour

Feminist Theory IGS 601 3

Introduction to Gender Studies IGS 611 3

Gender issues in Ethiopia IGS 621 4
Semester Total 10

Year I Semester II

  Course Title Course No. Credit Hour
1 Feminist Research Methodology  IGS 612 4
2 Gender Issues in Developing World IGS 622 3
3 Seminar in Gender Studies IGS 632 3
4 Gender and Policy Issues IGS 642 2
Semester Total 12

Year II Semester I/II

  Course Title Course No. Credit Hour
1. Practicum in Gender studies (Sem I) IGS 651 3
2. Master Thesis (Sem I/II) IGS 661 6
Year Total 3
Course Descriptions  

IGS 601 Feminist Theory (3 Cr. Hrs) 

This course will explore the major feminist theories and history of women movements. It further analyzes the various waves of feminism and its response to the major theoretic cal challenge from Marxism and socialism, psychoanalysis, post structuralism, and postmodernism, critical race theory and postcolonial theory. It helps to understand why theory is important to feminist work and to be able to distinguish what is at stake in competing theoretical approaches. The foal of the course is to see the position of women in the Ethiopian society, locate in different socio-cultural settings with these theoretical stances. 

IGS 611 Introduction to Gender Studies (3 Cr. Hrs)

This course will introduce the major feminist (theories, gender relations and the entire gamut of procreative practices) sexuality, race embodiment, and perspectives on the subordination of women and patriarchy, it also explores the historical developments of WID and GAD, the relationship between feminism and women studies, the scope, goals, human redefinition and the interdisciplinary nature of gender studies. 

IGS 621 Gender Issues in Ethiopia (4 Cr. Hrs) 

This course will explore Ethiopian gender issues in different sectors. Issues of gender in Ethiopian history, politics, law, agriculture, education, health, literature, environment etc will be discussed with major emphasis placed on the cultural practice and influences. Reading, it also includes scholarly practices like the systematic documentation, reading, reviewing, and evaluation of articles, essays, consultancy documents, books and theses available on gender issues in Ethiopia to provide critical reflections upon the challenges of analyzing sectoral gender issues within the framework of different disciplined knowledge.  

IGS 612 Feminist Research Methodology (4 Cr. Hrs) 

This course will provide a range of social science research tools that give particular attention to gender analysis and the development of critical analytical skills to e valuate sexist, ethnocentric and androconcentric bias in the design, conduct and reporting of research. Students explore the issues of quantitative and qualitative research methodologies followed by a detailed feminist critique of traditional research methodologies. It also considers research ethics, the debate regarding representation, epistemology and different theories of knowledge as well as techniques for bringing women’s voice into the public arenas. 

IGS 622 Gender Issues in Developing World (3 Cr. Hrs) 

This course will explore issues of gender with particular relevance to the third world. The course sets the controversy over the representation by western (white feminist of coloured women and the critique of western feminist by the “women of colour” the historical and theoretical background for the debate will be explored with examples of how interpretations based upon western models and theories have resulted misrepresentation of women in “ other’ culture. Furthermore this debate will be seen in connection with the postmodern emphasis on self-reflexivity and the theoretical and methodological consequences this has had for the representation of ‘’others’’  

IGS 632 Seminar in Gender Studies (3 Cr. Hrs) 

This course will explore contemporary gender issues in Ethiopia and abroad. It offers analysis of selected ideas, trends and problems in gender studies which had generated debate within gender-related scholarship across several disciplines/ field of enquiry. 

IGS 642 Gender and Policy Issues (2 Cr. Hrs) 

The main purpose of this course is to explore the nature and concept of public policy, processes pf policy making, gender mainstreaming and policy analysis.  

IGS 651 Practicum in Gender Studies (3 Cr. Hrs) 

This course will have two major components. Students apply of gain practical field experience by being associated with different organizations and also share life histories of women with different social standings. 

IGS 661 Master Theses 

The course demands students to apply their theoretical and methodological expertise developed so far in problem identification, proposal preparation, collection and analysis of data and writing a scientific report etc. students will make independent but supervised investigation on their interest and orally defend it. 

9. Graduation Requirements  

  1. Scoring the pass mark in the course work (CGPA of 3.0 and above)
  2. Passing the MA thesis defense with a pass mark (satisfactory)

10. Assessment  

        Relevance and Demand 

Resource Profile 

1. Physical Facilities  

2. Human Resource 

Academic Rank Qualification Number
Assistant professor  PhD 1
Lecturer MA 3*
<>                             * Two of them are currently on study Leave  

3 Library/ Documentation Centre
<>Beside the University Library (commonly known as Kennedy Memorial), The Centre also has a documentation centre (located in the ground floor of the NCR) with a good collection of both local and international research works on gender issues 

 Degree Nomenclature
           The name of the degree will be

                          Master of Arts Degree in Gender Studies