Gender Studies at RUB – intersectional | interdisciplinary | international

Gender Studies is a relatively new research discipline that uses gender as a category for the analysis of society and culture in various historical, cultural or political contexts. Gender refers to the social and cultural construction of sex, role concepts and norms. Since gender as a social category never stands alone, but is always related to other categories such as ethnicity, body or age, students learn to perceive gender-hierarchical realities from an intersectional perspective, to critically question social developments with regard to gender relations and to know methods and instruments for creating equal opportunities. Fields of research such as  Masculinities Studies, Postcolonial Studies, Disability Studies, Critical Whiteness Studies and Queer Studies will also be examined.

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Maximiliane Brand, M.A.
Academic Advisor Gender Studies
GD E1 Room 337
Phone: +49 (0)23432-26646

Study Programmes for Gender Studies

The key content of the study programmes for Gender Studies offered by RUB includes the following:

Work, institutions, cultural practicesCultural and media representationsIdentities, positions, differences
The analysis of the comprehensive transformation processes, which can be seen from a historical and current perspective, in work, institutions and cultural practices in the national and international context. The analysis of cultural constructions and representations of gender, and in particular those of media and literature.Analysis of processes of social positioning by people or groups of people between the conflicting priorities of social categories and identity formation.

At RUB, the core teaching of Gender Studies consists of the courses offered by the three faculties of Social Sciences, Philology (especially  Media Studies and Romance Studies) and Historical Science. The Marie-Jahoda Fellowship offers events which add to this programme, as do varying the programme with other subjects such as Protestant and Catholic Theology, Sports Science and Psychology.

The courses:

1. Gender Studies – Culture, Communication, Society (2-subject Masters)

As a 2-subject Masters, Gender Studies is combined with another subject of your choice, on an equal standing. The standard duration of the programme of study is 4 semesters and comprises 120 CP (credit points). The 2-subject Masters programme requires a BA degree of at least 6 semesters in humanities, cultural sciences, social sciences or philology. Masters or diploma degrees may be recognised as equivalent. In the case of external applicants and graduates from other subjects, an equivalence test will be carried out using the documents submitted for the application. Successful completion of a Master of Arts (MA) also qualifies you to study for a doctorate. Completing an internship during the Masters programme is not obligatory, but is recommended (6 weeks or 240 hours respectively). A study visit abroad is also not obligatory, but can be integrated into the curriculum.

2. Joint Degree Gender Studies (1-subject Masters)

The Masters programme Joint Degree Gender Studies is a joint programme of the Ruhr University Bochum and the Karl-Franzens University of Graz (Austria). The standard duration of the programme of study is 4 semesters and comprises 120 CP (credit points). The prerequisite for admission is having completed a BA degree in Gender Studies with a minimum of 180 CP (ECTS credits). Other equivalent degrees in humanities and cultural studies, social sciences and economics, law, theology, psychology, health sciences and nursing sciences may be recognised as equivalent provided they include at least 30 CP in one or more of the following areas:

  • Gender issues in cultural studies and social sciences
  • theory development in the fields of culture, media and society
  • methods of cultural, humanities and social science empiricism.

The Joint Degree Gender Studies comprises an obligatory internship (4 weeks or 160 hours) and at least one semester abroad at 30 CP level at the partner university in Graz. The Master of Arts (MA) is recognised as a full course of academic study in the countries of the partner universities and qualifies students to continue to study for a doctorate.

Both courses of study, 2-subject and 1-subject Masters, have restricted admission.

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Maximiliane Brand, M.A.
Academic Advisor Gender Studies
GD E1 Room 337
Phone: +49 (0)23432-26646

Gender knowledge in practice

Gender knowledge, and competence in gender and diversity are required in many occupational fields. For the first time, Gender Studies offers the possibility of a well-founded and interdisciplinary study of equal opportunities, social inequality, heterogeneous society and inclusion.

How these skills are put into practice in the workplace can be tested, for example, in internships. An internship does not just help you to gain your first professional experience and to work out specific career aspirations, it also makes it easier to start your career after graduation, as practical experience is an important criterion on your CV. In addition to this, the Gender Knowledge in Practical Application workshop, which is held regularly and which is an integral part of both study programmes, offers the opportunity to exchange ideas with experts from various professional fields and to listen to individual reports from the RUB Gender Studies alumi on the start to their careers.

In the past, speakers have been recruited from areas and companies including the following:

  • Gleichstellungsstelle der Stadt Heppenheim
  • Gleichstellungsstelle der Universitäten Paderborn, Dortmund und Bochum
  • Gleichstellungsstelle der Stadt Bochum
  • Gleichstellungsstelle der Stadt Essen
  • Gleichstellungsstelle der Metropole Ruhr
  • Fachstelle Gender NRW FUMA e. V. Essen
  • analogTheater Köln
  • Deutsche Gesellschaft für Technische Zusammenarbeit (GTZ)
  • Heinrich-Böll-Stiftung
  • Deutsche BP AG
  • t-velopment
  • Henkel
  • Deutsche Telekom
  • genanet e.V.
  • Industriemuseum Cromford
  • Zentrum Frau in Beruf und Technik
  • Gesundheits- und Sozialplanung der Kreisverwaltung Ennepe-Ruhr
  • Dissens e. V.
  • Stelle Chancengleichheit am Arbeitsmarkt der Arbeitsagentur Bochum
  • Rosa Strippe e.V.
  • Bundesministerium für Familie, Senioren, Frauen und Jugend
  • Budrich Verlag
  • Jugend- und Kulturzentrum Werkstadt Witten
  • Zentrum für Hochschul- und Qualitätsentwicklung (ZfH) Universität Duisburg-Essen
  • Bosch Rexroth
  • UNO
  • Career Service der RUB
  • Rubicon e.V. Köln
  • Frauenkulturbüro NRW
  • Dortmund
  • Diversity Management FOM Essen
  • Neue Westfälische Zeitung
  • Dezernat Hochschulkommunikation RUB
  • Rosa-Luxemburg-Stiftung
  • Amadeu-Antonio-Stiftung
  • Brause Mag
  • Flüchtlingsrat NRW
  • Stabsstelle Chancengleichheit, Familie und Vielfalt, TU Dortmund
  • WALK IN RUHR – Zentrum für sexuelle Gesundheit und Medizin
  • Gleichstellungstelle für Mann und Frau Stadt Wuppertal

Likewise, on each Gender Knowledge in Practical Application day, a RUB Gender Studies graduate is invited to speak, to give an insight into the start to her/his career.

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Maximiliane Brand, M.A.
Academic Advisor Gender Studies
GD E1 Room 337
Phone: +49 (0)23432-26646

Experience Gender Studies Abroad

Joint Degree Gender Studies: One course of study at two universities   

The 1-subject Joint Masters Degree in Gender Studies is run jointly with the Karl Franzens University of Graz (KFU) (Austria). One exchange semester in Graz is obligatory for all RUB students on this study programme and vice versa.

For students whose main university is Bochum, at least 30 ECTS must be completed at the KFU.

Erasmus exchange programmes

Below you will find the Erasmus exchange programmes from our three core teaching faculties of Social Science, Media Studies and History.

In addition to this, Gender Studies cooperates with the University of Istanbul in the field of Women’s Studies.

German domestic exchange program PONS

PONS offers Gender Studies students the opportunity to study for one semester at a different location in Germany. Students who use PONS can learn new content at the participating locations or develop existing in-depth knowledge. Each location offers different teaching and research emphases in gender research. As such, you can get to know other universities and their structures, and to establish networks that are crucial for your future career.

Involved partners

  • University of Bielefeld
  • Johann Wolfgang Goethe-University of Frankfurt am Main
  • Georg-August-University of Göttingen
  • Carl von Ossietzky University of Oldenburg
  • University of Paderborn

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Maximiliane Brand, M.A.
Academic Advisor Gender Studies
GD E1 Room 337
Phone: +49 (0)23432-26646

Student representative council of Gender Studies

Gender Studies students are represented by the student representative committee. The student representatives also serve as advisors to the governing body/executive board of the Marie Jahoda Center for International Gender Studies, and in their own blog they provide details of the latest news on studying at RUB.


  • uzette Kahlert: Key subjects – An Introduction to Fat Studies (SS 2018)
  • Simon Graf: Masculinity as a Symbolic Power and Common Practice (WS 2017/18)
  • Katharina Hajek: Family duel. Contemporary Conflicts Concerning Family, Reproductive Work and Gender in Politics and Society (SS 2017)
  • Nadine Dannenberg: Sex Sells?! – An Introduction to Asexuality Studies (WS 2016/17)
  • Tatiana Prorokova: “It’s Mercy, Compassion, and Forgiveness I Lack. Not Rationality”: Deconstructing Female Masculinity in Film (SS 2016)
  • Katrin Ottensmann: Inclusion as a Social Paradigm Shift (WS 2014/15)
  • Anna Ostrowski: Physical_ness between Norms and Alternatives (SS 2014)
  • Christine Buchwald: Gender Dimensions in War (winter semester 2013/14)
  • Annette Raczuhn: Transgender and the (Re)Establishment of Cultural Intelligibility (SS 2013)
  • Kim Siekierski, Helena Patané: Body, Eating Disorders and Gender (WS 2012/13)
  • Marcel Wrzesinski: Introduction to the “Queer Theory” (WS 2012/13)
  • Mithu Sanyal: Cultural History of the Female Genitals (winter semester 2011/12)
  • Barbara Umrath: Women’s Movements and Feminist Critical Theory (SS 2011)
  • Ulrike Klöppel: Gender by Design? The Relationship between Intersex Medical Science and Gender Studies (SS 2011)
  • Maja Figge: Whiteness in the German Cinema after 1945 (WS 2010/2011)
  • Heinz-Jürgen Voß: Poststructuralist Theories and their Practical Application in the Research of Gender and Queer Studies: Construction, Deconstruction, Discourse, Intersectionality (WS 2010/2011)
  • Tobias Krüger: Masculinity in Modern Times (SS 2010)
  • Heinz-Jürgen Voß: Biology of Gender – and its Social Production (SS 2010)

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Maximiliane Brand, M.A.
Academic Advisor Gender Studies
GD E1 Room 337
Phone: +49 (0)23432-26646