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MSc Gender (Research)



While in many ways similar to the MSc Gender, this degree programme further emphasises research design, epistemology, methodology and research methods. Both degrees introduce students to the significance of gender in producing as well as consuming knowledge, and consider the difference a gendered perspective makes to research at all stages in the process, but the MSc Gender (Research) also provides a grounding in the ‘how to’ of gender (and related) research. 

This degree has 1+3 recognition from the ESRC, which means it is particularly appropriate for Home/EU students looking to go on to further study.

Programme Structure

More details about the MSc Gender (Research) content, structure, requirements and courses can be found here.


Sumi Madhok


Preliminary Recommended Readings

Reminder: Students are not required to have studied gender before they arrive, nor are the below readings compulsory before the academic session begins. These are merely recommendations if students wish to familiarise themselves with the theory they will be encountering once they begin studying. The following were recommended by our previous and current MSc students as being both useful preliminary reading, and widely consulted throughout the academic year. Some are more appropriate to previous academic study in gender theory but you should not be put off!

As you begin studying, they will get easier. Any of the Readers are a good introduction to the subject. As we get more recommendations, this web page will be updated.  Please don't feel you have to buy any of these - all are available in the LSE library - they are merely as a guide should you wish to do some reading beforehand. There is no one book covering everything!

Highly Recommended Readings


The SAGE Handbook of Feminist Theory (eds) Mary Evans, Clare Hemmings, Marsha Henry, Hazel Johnstone, Sumi Madhok, Ania Plomien and Sadie Wearing (Aug 2014)

At no point in recorded history has there been an absence of intense, and heated, discussion about the subject of how to conduct relations between women and men. Edited by and featuring Gender Institute faculty, this Handbook provides a comprehensive guide to these omnipresent issues and debates, mapping the present and future of thinking about feminist theory. The chapters gathered here present the state of the art in scholarship in the field, covering: epistemology and marginality; literary, visual and cultural representations; sexuality; macro and microeconomics of gender; conflict and peace. It is an essential reference work for advanced students and academics not only of feminist theory, but of gender and sexuality across the humanities and social sciences.

Please note: this is a very expensive volume, so students are not expected to purchase it. It will be available in libraries from August 2014.


Gender: The Key Concepts (eds) Mary Evans and Carolyn H. Williams (2013) 

Featuring Gender Institute faculty, this invaluable volume provides an overview of 37 terms, theories and concepts frequently used in gender studies which those studying the subject can find difficult to grasp. Each entry provides a critical definition of the concept, examining the background to the idea, its usage and the major figures associated with the term. Taking a truly interdisciplinary and global view of gender studies, concepts covered include: agency; diaspora; heteronormativity; subjectivity; performativity; class; feminist politics; body; gender identity and reflexivity. With cross referencing and further reading provided throughout the text, Gender: The Key Concepts unweaves the relationships between different aspects of the field defined as gender studies, and is essential for all those studying gender in interdisciplinary contexts as undergraduates, postgraduates and beyond.


Other Recommended Readings (regardless of background)

  • Butler, J, (1999) Gender Trouble  New York, London: Routledge 
  • de Beauvoir, S The Second Sex (1997) London: Vintage
  • Evans, M. and Williams, C.H. (2012) Gender: The Key Concepts New York, London: Routledge  New York, London: Routledge
  • Grewal, I and C.Kaplan (1994) (eds) , Scattered Hegemonies: Postmodernity and Transnational Feminist Practices Minneapolis: Minneapolis Press
  • Laqueur,T (1990) Making Sex Mass:Harvard University Press
  • Okin,SM (1999) Is Multiculturalism Bad for Women  Princeton, New Jersey: Princeton University Press
  • Pateman, C (1988) The Sexual Contract  Cambridge:Polity Press
  • Nussbaum, M (1999) Sex and Social Justice  Oxford:Oxford University Press
  • Wiegman, R (2002) (eds) Women Studies on Its Own(NC:Duke University Press)

Recent Publications by Core Faculty

Rethinking Agency

Rethinking Agency: Developmentalism, Gender and Rights by Sumi Madhok (2013)

This book proposes a new theoretical framework for agency thinking by examining the ethical, discursive and practical engagements of a group of women development workers in north-west India with developmentalism and individual right.

Gender, Agency and Coercion

Gender, Agency and Coercion (eds) Sumi Madhok, Anne Phillips, Kalpana Wilson (2013)

This collection aims to think critically about agency and explore the relationship between agency and coercion in a range of regional, intellectual, ethical and political contexts. Contributions from Samantha Ashenden, Ngaire Donaghue, Mary Evans, Rosalind Gill, Clare Hemmings, Marsha Henry, Kimberly Hutchings, Emily Jackson, Amal Treacher Kabesh, Lois McNay, Sadie Wearing and Heather Widdows.

Why Stories Matter

Why Stories Matter: The Political Grammar of Feminist Theory by Clare Hemmings (2011)

A powerful critique of the stories that feminists tell about the past four decades of Western feminist theory. Clare Hemmings examines the narratives that make up feminist accounts of recent feminist history, highlights the ethical and political dilemmas raised by these narratives, and offers innovative strategies for transforming them. Winner of the Feminist and Women's Studies Association (FWSA) Book Prize 2012.



  • Lovell, Andermahr, and Walkowitz (eds), (2nd ed. 2000). A Concise Glossary of Feminist Theory. New York: Arnold Publishers.
  • Wright, E (ed) , (1992). Feminism and Psychoanalysis: A critical dictionary. Oxford: Blackwell Publishers.


  • Code, Lorraine (ed) (2003) Encyclopedia of Feminist Thought Routledge


  • Davis, K, Evans, M and Lorber, J (2006) Handbook of Gender and Women's Studies Sage


  • (including short extracts providing a wide range of the main debates)
  • Abelove, B and Halperin, Eds (1993) The Lesbian and Gay Studies Reader.New York: Routledge
  • bell hooks (1992) Black Looks: Race and Representation London: Turnaround
  • Bhavnani, K-K,  Foran,J and Kurian, P (2003)  (eds). Feminist futures : re-imagining women, culture and development London :Zed
  • Bhavnani, K-K (2001) Feminism and 'race' Oxford : Oxford University Press, 2001
  • Gould,C Key Concepts in Gender Theory(1997) New Jersey :Humanities Press
  • Grewal, I and Kaplan, C (2006) (eds)
  • An introduction to women's studies : gender in a transnational world Edition: 2nd ed.Boston : McGraw-Hill Higher Education
  • Kemp,S & Squires, J Feminisms (1997) Oxford:Oxford UP
  • Saunders, K (2002) Feminist Post-Development Thought: Rethinking Modernity, Post-Colonialism and Representation London:Zed
  • Lewis, R & Mills, S (2003) Eds. Feminist Postcolonial Theory: A ReaderEdinburgh: Edinburgh University Press 
  • Pilcher, J and I Whelehan 50 Key Concepts in Gender Studies (Key Concepts)Sage (2004)
  • Visvanathan, N, et. al. (eds.) The Women, Gender and Development Reader, London and New Jersey: Zed Books (1997)
  • The Sexual Subject: A Screen Reader in Sexuality. Routledge (1992)


  • Development & Change
  • Differences
  • Ethics
  • European Journal of Women's Studies
  • Feminist Theory
  • Feminist Review
  • Gender & Development
  • Gender, Place & Culture: A Journal of Feminist Geography
  • Gender & Society
  • International Feminist Journal of Politics
  • Philosophy & Public Affairs
  • Political Geography
  • Sexualities
  • Social Politics
  • Signs
  • Violence Against Women


  • Benería, L. and Bisnath,S (2003)(eds) . Global Tensions: challenges and opportunities in the world economy  London & NY:Routledge
  • Bronfen,E and Kavka,M (2001) Feminist Consequences: Theory for the New Century NY: Columbia University Press
  • Butler, J & Scott, JW. (1992). Feminists Theorize the Political, London : Routledge.
  • Cohan, S. & Hark, I.R. eds. Screening the Male: Exploring Masculinities in Hollywood Cinema. (1993)
  • Connell,R Masculinities (1995) Cambridge:Polity Press
  • Cornwall, A, Harrison, E and Whitehead, A (2007) Feminisms in Development: Contradictions, Contestations, Challenges London:Zed
  • de Lauretis, T (1989). Technologies of Gender : Essays on Theory, Film, and Fiction, Basingstoke : Macmillan Press.
  • Foucault, M History of Sexuality Volume 1 (1981) Penguin
  • Hawley, J C. (2001). Postcolonial, Queer, New York : State University of New York Press.
  • Hill Collins,P Black feminist thought : knowledge, consciousness, and the politics of empowerment (1990) London : Unwin Hyman
  • Jackson, R. and R. Pearson (eds.) Feminist Visions of Development, London: Routledge (1998)
  • Kabeer,N. Gender mainstreaming in poverty eradication and the millennium development goals: a handbook for policy-makers and other stakeholders(2003) London:Commonwealth Secretariat
  • Lewis,G; S Gewirtz and J Clarke (eds) Rethinking Social Policy (2000) Open University with Sage
  • McClintock, A. (1995). Imperial Leather : Race, Gender and Sexuality in the Colonial Contest, London : Routledge.
  • MacDonald,M. Representing Women. (1997) Arnold.
  • McNay, L (1994) Foucault a Critical Introduction, Cambridge: Polity Press
  • Mohanty, CT Feminism Without Borders (2003) Duke University Press
  • Molyneux, M and Razavi ,S. Gender Justice, Development and Rights (2002)Oxford: Oxford University press
  • Nicolson,L (ed) Feminism/Postmodernism (1990) New York:Routledge
  • Parpart, JL; Rai,SM; and Staudt, K (2005) Rethinking Empowerment.  Gender & Development in a global/local world Routledge
  • Phillips,A (2007) Multiculturalism Without Culture Princeton University Press (listen to professor Phillips recently interviewed on Philosophy Bites) )
  • Squires,J Gender in Political Theory (1999) Malden, Mass : Polity Press
  • Stoler, A L. (1995). Race and the Education of Desire : Foucault's History of Sexuality and the Colonial Order of Things, Durham : Duke University Press.
  • Van Zoonen,L. Feminist Media Studies. (1995) Sage
  • Watson,S and L.Doyal (eds) Engendering social policy (1999) Philadelphia, Penn. : Open University Press
  • Williams, F Social Policy: A Critical Introduction (1989)Polity Press
  • Yuval-Davis, N, Gender and Nation, London: Sage (1997)

What Gender alumni are doing now...

Information on graduate destinations can be found in the Gender Institute Alumni pages and the LSE Careers Gender Institute statistics page.

Alasia, (Completed in 2012)

I am a PhD student at the University of Cambridge and I am also an Advice Volunteer for Solace Women's Aid, a London based charity with a primary focus supporting women and children affected by domestic and sexual violence. The MSc in Gender (Research) provided me with the knowledge and research methods to do doctoral work. In particular, it offered me the opportunity to apply gender theories to my research field (i.e. political theory). Moreover, by always insisting on the practical implications of the theoretical concepts we discussed during the year, it gave me the strength to apply for volunteering positions in organisations which help women who suffer from domestic violence.

Lauren, (Completed in 2006)

Currently I work for two female Labour MPs, but soon I will be joining a trade union as a Researcher. In my job I write speeches, research for select committees, write amendments to legislation, press work, etc. The training in practical research skills (both quantitative and qualitative) has definitely given me an edge when applying for jobs. The overall degree has helped me to be critical of public policy and has helped me work on issues that affect women in the UK.

Jennifer, (Completed in 2006)

I now work as an Independent Consultant, Plan International at Coalition for Adolescent Girls. I carry out research for international children's rights programmes, with a specific focus on adolescent girls' development. The MSc Gender Research degree directly helped me launch a career in gender analysis of economic development programs and human rights. Training in advanced research design, quantitative and qualitative methods, and in socioeconomic gender analysis provided me with the qualifications needed to work as a technical specialist with numerous development and humanitarian organizations.

Confused about studying at the Gender Institute? Find your answer here.

Making an MSc application to the Gender Institute?

What are the entry requirements to an MSc at the Gender Institute?

Information about entry requirements is provided for each degree programme, but  generally  speaking we require a first or upper second class honours (2:1) degree from a UK university or a non-UK equivalent, such as a cumulative grade point average of 3.5 on a 4.0 scale.  


For country/regional specific information about equivalent qualifications, please select the relevant region for you from the country/regional specific information section of the online Graduate Prospectus.


Additionally, we ask for two good academic references (see point 5 below) and a personal statement. 


Personal Statement:  We take great consideration of your personal statement which should describe your academic interests, ambitions, research concerns and explain the reasons why you wish to undertake the particular area of study you are interested in at the Gender Institute. There is no fixed word limit but in general your statement should be up to 2-3 typed A4 sides.


When and how do I apply and what information do you have about financial assistance?

Please go to the LSE Graduate Admissions page, where you can find out about the application process, the application form itself, and information about financial assistance. The  Financial Support Office is responsible for administering School funds and a variety of scholarships, studentships, prizes and awards.

Are there any language requirements?

Applicants whose first language is not English, or who have not been educated to degree level in English, are required to demonstrate their command of the language by taking either the International English Language Test (IELTS) or the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL). The Gender Institute asks for the Higher requirement: 7.0 in IELTS (at least 6.0 in each section) or 107 in the internet-based TOEFL (at least 21 in writing, and 20 in the other three elements). More information here about English language requirements.


Do I need GRE/GMAT scores? 

We do not require GRE/GMAT scores for our programmes.

What are the reference requirements?

Normally we require two good academic references per candidate, but further detail about references can be obtained on the Graduate Admissions FAQ website. Guidance for referees: writing a reference for an MSc candidate. 

Can I apply to study as a Masters student part-time?

Yes, part-time Masters study here at the Gender Institute really means 'half-time'.  The usual arrangement is to take half the programme over one year and half in the following year. You will take GI400 Gender Theories in the Modern World: an interdisciplinary approach in your first year, as this course provides training in key concepts and approaches within the gender field and will inform your overall degree here at the Gender Institute.


Tuition takes place during the day, at the same time as full-time students. The detailed timetable is available just before the start of the session.  We do not hold lectures in the evening beyond 6pm, or at weekends, but we do try to accommodate part-time students' requirements to fit in with working patterns, and we have a representative for part-time students on staff/student forums.


You should be aware that part-time study alone is usually insufficient to obtain entry clearance to the UK on a student visa. See https://www.gov.uk/browse/visas-immigration/student-visas for more details


How do I apply for ESRC Funding as a Masters Student? 

**ESRC funding has already been allocated for the 2013/14 academic year** 


The 1+3 scheme provides funding for a one year research training master's linked to a three year PhD and is designed for students who have not already completed an ESRC recognised programme of research training. This relates to our MSc (Research) programme.  Students must be from HEU to be eligible and will be considered automatically, however please indicate in the application form that you wish to be considered for this funding.  You must include with your application an outline research proposal. This proposal should be a brief description of the research topic you are considering pursuing during your PhD and should explain why you are interested in this area of research. As your research interests will develop over the year of your Master's training your proposal need only be indicative. Applications for MSc (Research) programmes received without this outline research proposal will be considered for the MSc programme only and not the PhD portion.  Please also note entrance into the PhD programme is dependent on the MSc result in line with usual admittance to the PhD programme (normally distinction level).


In January of each year, the Gender Institute puts 1 person forward from a pool of candidates, including applicants to our PhD programme (+3 and 1+3 are considered together).  We have a quota of 1 place plus a reserve.                       

If you do wish to be considered for ESRC funding then you should ensure you have submitted a complete application for admission, including transcripts and references, by late December as ESRC funding is only considered once per year.


Please note that the ESRC 1+3 Scheme is only available to Home/EU and full-time applicants.  


General Student Enquiries

General - LSE

What are the dates of the terms at LSE? 

Please check Term dates for details. Registration is usually a couple of weeks before the beginning of the first term, so you should definitely be here for that, as well as the School Orientation and also the Gender Institute's own Departmental Orientation session, which begins with a lecture on the Wednesday evening before Week 1 of Michaelmas Term.


If you are looking for private accommodation, plan to spend at least three weeks before that to give yourself enough time to look for and secure housing. Check the Accommodation Office for more information.  


If you use Facebook, you might want to search for various LSE student groups that might include housing and 'buddy-up' information. In addition to their suggestions for student housing, there are several external sites that will be useful:

Are there places to study on the LSE campus? 

The first port of call for a place to study is the LSE Library.


The Gender Institute open space in COL.5.04 Columbia House is a working area, a social area, offprints collection and so on. The  PhD   students often come and sit with the MSc students in the social area. Mail will be left for you here. We are lucky enough to have a kitchen and you are welcome to use the facilities - we operate a 'clean up after yourself' policy. Your access to the open space is primarily during main teaching days, Monday through Thursday 10.00-5.00pm in term time unless otherwise notified and we would be grateful if this could be observed. Occasionally we will hold seminars or film screenings here but we will always notify you in advance.


Please also note that although LSE and the GI are primarily safe places, our offices are open to the street and you should never leave valuables lying around this room. If in doubt, check with Hazel (h.johnstone@lse.ac.uk) or Kate (k.steward@lse.ac.uk).

What study skills support is provided by the School?

The School offers a range of study support facilities, via the LSE LibraryIT Services, the Teaching and Learning Centre (TLC)LSE Language Centre, and the Student Services Centre.  TLC support includes study skills lectures and workshops as well as one-to-one 'tutorials' for students requiring more detailed support.  Easy access to the various events and support activities are available via LSE Learning World website set up by TLC.

I'm a prospective student, what's the best way to get around London? 

London is a huge city, and transportation is good but expensive. Most people have Transportation For London (TFL) transit cards, known as Oyster cards. If you live within walking distance of LSE, you may want to get an Oyster card and use the pay-as-you-go plan for occasional bus or Tube (subway) rides. It's actually a pre-pay plan, but it's much easier (and cheaper) to 'top-up' your Oyster card than to pay at the bus or Underground station. If you live farther away, you can get a monthly bus pass, or monthly Tube pass (includes buses)-the cost is dependent on which Zones you want to travel in.  


Students receive a 30% discount, so you'll want to get your Oyster card as soon as possible. You can apply on-line close to the beginning of the school year, and get a Photocard--you'll need a passport-type photo to send in.  


General - Gender Institute

Where is the Gender Institute located? 

LSE Gender Institute 

Columbia House

Houghton Street 
London WC2A 2AE
United Kingdom


General enquiries: Tel: +44 (0)20 7955 7602


Another section of the LSE website you may find useful is Maps and Directions


What careers do most Gender Institute graduates move into?

Gender Institute alumni go in an ever-expanding range of career directions once they have finished studying with us. We have alumni currently working at The Guardian, Stonewall, UNDP, the UN, Catalyst and various government/non-governmental agencies and not-for-profit organisations. 


For more information, please see What do LSE Gender Studies graduates do? (LSE Careers Information) and the Gender Institute Alumni section of the GI website (graduate destinations are listed by year on the left-hand menu).


Does the Gender Institute organise any social/study events?

The Gender Institute has a jam-packed Events Schedule every academic year, usually running from September to May.  We run a series of highly anticipated public lectures with high profile speakers, Judith Butler, Jacqueline Rose, Eve Kosofsky-Sedgwick and Michelle Bachelet have all appeared in the past.  We also run a smaller-scale series of research seminars with faculty, doctoral students and visiting fellows, as well as public conferences, workshops and symposia, and various student-led activities, such as film screenings, study groups and student socials. 


How can I find out more about the Gender Institute Faculty?

To learn more about our teaching staff, their research specialisations, and visiting fellows, advisory committee,  admin  team and associate fellows, please see Who's who

Is the GI on Facebook/Twitter?

Yes, feel free to follow LSEGenderTweet on Twitter and the 'Like' the LSE Gender Facebook page


We also create a Facebook Group for each year's offer holders, which acts as a contact point so that people can get to know each other before they arrive as students. Offer holders will be sent details of this group after they have been sent an offer.

Being at the GI as a Masters Student

Lectures and Seminars

What is the format of graduate teaching? 

Graduate students often ask about the intended role of lectures and seminars. The following provides a brief guide. 


Lectures:  Each course generally comprises a series of lectures. As graduate students, an important part of your learning will be done through reading the course literature and discussing the issues in and outside seminars. You should understand that you will be expected in your own written work to go considerably beyond the content and approach of lectures in your subjects. Lectures are intended to fulfil various functions, but they are not a substitute for independent reading and thought. Lectures are intended to provide students with an overview of a particular subject-area, its related concepts and issues, and to introduce the most important relevant academic literature. This can mean that lectures will often not be able to achieve the depth of coverage that you will find in the relevant literature. Lectures also provide you with exposure to the individual styles and approaches of different teachers at LSE.


Seminars:  In addition to lectures, teaching is conducted in seminars. These are usually held weekly over the period of the course, with students allocated permanently to groups of, normally, ten to fifteen. Although each course has a 'Teacher Responsible' (also known as 'Course Coordinator') for its overall organisation, the academics involved in the teaching of courses are responsible for individual seminar groups. While lectures can attract large numbers of students, seminars are limited in size and provide an opportunity for students to give presentations and discuss issues raised in the academic literature. Students are expected to supplement formal contact hours by extensive unsupervised reading, preparation for seminars and essay-writing.


Note that attendance at seminars is compulsory. Participation in a seminar represents a commitment to the seminar leader and your fellow students.


How many hours per week are given over to lectures and classes/seminars? How is teaching distributed across the three terms? 

Teaching takes place in the first two terms (Michaelmas and Lent). The Course Guide will explain the hours of study for each course.


We expect full-time MSc students to spend at least 40 hours a week on their studies.  This combines your face-to-face teaching time in lectures and seminars, as well as reading time, meeting with academics during office hours and general preparation for classes.  The amount of time actually spent in class will vary depending on which courses you take (some courses have longer lectures/seminars than others), but you should expect to spend between 5-10 hours a week in class in the first two terms. In the third term, you will be busy preparing for exams and dissertation, so it would be a mistake to expect the work to slow down once teaching has finished for the year.


How is teaching distributed across the three terms?

Course teaching - lectures and seminars - will be held in the first two terms (Michaelmas and Lent Terms).  The third term (Summer Term) is dedicated to preparing for examinations and beginning to write the bulk of your dissertation.  The dissertation is due on the first working day of September, so you do have the summer vacation months to write it, but you should be aware that you will not have access to your dissertation supervisor or any other academic staff outside of term time.  Therefore it is wise to try to take full advantage of office hours set up by your dissertation supervisor in the Summer Term.


Can I record lectures and access lecture notes?

Some LSE lectures are recorded already and then made available via Moodle. Lecture notes and presentations are normally uploaded as well. You should check with the course convenor to make sure, as it varies between departments. You are welcome to record all Gender Institute lectures, but you must get permission from the lecturer beforehand. 

How do I find out when and where lectures and seminars are held?

Timetabling is undertaken by the School rather than by Departments and the Module Timetable is available on-line shortly before teaching begins (see LSE Teaching and Timetabling). Timetable clashes are kept to a minimum but are sometimes inevitable because of the number of optional courses offered across the School. You are therefore advised to make your final course selection only after having checked carefully the scheduling of relevant lectures and seminars in the Module Timetable.


When will the examinations be held and when will the examination timetable be available?

Examinations are held in the Summer Term, normally in June. The provisional examination timetable - which is organised by the School's Examinations Office - is normally published by the end of the preceding Lent Term and will be available on-line.

How long is the Masters programme, and when do I need to hand in my dissertation?

All full-time MSc programmes in the Gender Institute are 12 month programmes. The academic year begins in late September and the MSc dissertation submission date is the first working day of September in the following year.

When do I have have to decide on my dissertation topic?

It's a good idea to think about your topic during Michaelmas term, and if desired you can discuss this with your academic advisor; however, you won't be asked for your topic until late that term, and even then for only a brief description. You'll work on your dissertation ideas during Lent term, but may not start writing until Summer term. For most students (especially those with exams), the bulk of your dissertation writing will take place after Summer term, during the summer break. 

Does the Gender Institute award any MSc student prizes?

Yes, once results are released, the Gender Institute will award a prize to the student with the best results from each degree programme. In addition, one student will receive the Gender Institute prize for best overall degree result.  The actual prize will be a modest gesture (usually a book token), but the real value is being able to say that you were awarded the prize for your results on your CV, and academics will mention it when it comes to writing references.


In addition to the best overall performance in degree prizes, we are very pleased to be able to award the Betty Scharf prize for best dissertation in gender and best dissertation in gender and religion annually, and wish to thank the Scharf prize for their continuing generosity.



How will I sign up for my compulsory and optional courses?

Selecting and registering courses is different in almost every institution, so you may want to read the below carefully.


Firstly:  You do not need to worry about selecting courses before you register in September.  The course registration system will open around the first week of term and students will be able to register for their courses then and not before.  You register for courses on-line via LSE For You, which will be familiar from the application process.


Now, an important distinction:


  • Degree Programme:  This refers to the MSc that you applied for, so your degree programme might be 'MSc Gender' or 'MSc Gender, Media & Culture', or 'MSc Gender (Research)', etc.
  • Courses:  A course at LSE is an individual unit or half unit of study that makes up your degree, some institutions might refer to courses as classes.  Each department has its own set of courses, and you can tell which department offers which course by the course code prefix, so ' GI424'  is a course code, and the GI means that the course is offered by the Gender Institute, just as all courses that begin with MC  (e.g. MC418) are courses offered by the Department of Media and Communication.


All of the MSc degree programmes at the Gender Institute are made up of four units, but how many of these units are optional and how many are compulsory will depend upon your degree programme.  You can find this information by clicking on your degree programme title below: 



You can surf through information about the abundance of courses LSE has on offer this year on our Graduate Course Guide 2016/17. Changes are likely to be made before the beginning of next academic year, but at least this will give you an idea of which courses you may be interested in once you arrive. 


Selection of courses is done solely through LSE For You, which you will be used to from the application process.


Everything about course choice and registration will be explained fully at the Gender Institute Orientation sessions. 


What is the best way to decide upon my optional courses?

You've probably looked at the Graduate Course Guide and found there are many more classes you'd like to take than will fit into your schedule. Attending the GI inductions (both the GI-wide and the one for your specific programme) is most helpful. You will be introduced to the lecturers, who will describe their courses and offer you an opportunity to ask any questions you may have.    

Can I get a syllabus/reading list for the courses I will be studying? 

Complete reading lists for GI courses are accessible  only to registered students. However, the  LSE Calendar is accessible to everybody on the internet. There you can find a link to the Prospectus relating to your prospective degree course, which will have preliminary information on readings for particular courses.

Before Arriving/Early Stages

Is there anything I should read before starting in late September?

It's certainly not a requirement, but if you have the time and the inclination, it's a great idea to read something from the Recommended Readings (tab 3 above), suggested by faculty and previous MSc students. 

Should I buy any books before I get to London? 

No. In fact, unless you have bought one of the recommended reading list books (above) you probably won't have to buy any books at all while you're at the GI. All (or nearly all) key readings are available in the LSE library's Course Collection, or through the Library's offprint collection (these are individual photocopied readings). Some Recommended readings will be in the Course Collection or the Main Collection--all are available to LSE students. Alternatively, some courses have (relatively inexpensive) Study Packs, which contain all the key readings. In addition, the GI has a limited number of key readings in the Gender Institute Open Space, located in COL.5.04.


Can I see a sample of the course readings?

Here is the reading list for the first term of the core course  GI400 Gender Theories in the Modern World.  This is the 2010/11 academic year copy, so don't expect it to remain the same, but you can get a flavour of the course from this.


Where can I get a student perspective of the MSc experience at the GI?

You should take a look at our What to expect from your MSc year at the Gender Institute. This is written by Joanne, a former GI Masters student and is currently a doctoral candidate here. There is also a blog  Students@LSE written by LSE students about their experiences studying here. 

Who is in charge of my programme?

At the Gender Institute we have a Degree Convenor for each Degree Programme. 

Students are politely requested not to contact academics before the beginning of Orientation, and if you have any questions, comments or concerns, please contact Kate (k.steward@lse.ac.uk). 

Is there any formal representation of students in the Gender Institute?

Degree-specific meetings take place at an institute level and typically meet once a term. The meetings provide a forum for students on each degree to share their views about their programmes of study and to discuss GI issues that affect the student community as a whole. All students may attend but normally, there is one representative for each programme, selected by the degree cohort.


Gender Institute students also elect one part-time and one full-time representative to attend the relevant School level Taught Graduate Students' Consultative Forum and one student to sit on the Library User Committee Forum.


Student reps are not selected until Michaelmas Term begins.



How will I find out who my academic adviser is? 

Students will be assigned an academic adviser during the first week. The academic adviser is a student's most important academic link with the Institute and the School. The academic adviser will have set office hours and usually additional times during the first few weeks and will be happy to offer advice on courses, MSc regulations and on administrative matters generally, e.g., on the prospects of proceeding to higher degrees such as MPhil/PhD.


Additionally, the academic adviser may be able to offer advice if a student's work is affected by illness, financial difficulties.  If a student is unable to resolve the matter satisfactorily with the academic adviser, it can be discussed with the degree convener. 


A student's academic adviser will not necessarily be their dissertation supervisor. Dissertation supervisors will be allocated once topics have been agreed in the second term.


During LSE vacation periods, academic staff will not be available to meet with students and so it is important for workload to be organised to allow time to see an adviser or dissertation supervisor during term-time, especially for dissertation supervision during the summer term.


Are internships arranged by the Department?

The Gender Institute does not arrange  internships. However, if you are planning to pursue this yourself, it is advisable to speak to your academic adviser beforehand to ensure that the time commitment involved will be compatible with your studies. Graduate students may be interested in the  LSE Internship Scheme

Do students usually work to support themselves while studying, and what paid jobs are available within the School?

The Gender Institute itself does not currently offer MSc students paid work and the LSE does not normally hire MSc students in teaching/research roles.


There are a few opportunities for part-time (mainly administrative) work at LSE but these are not guaranteed, and as stated in your offer booklet, you may have restrictions on the amount of hours you are legally allowed to work. The LSE is quite a small campus, and although we do create as many jobs as possible, we are bound by our size. The LSE Careers Service do operate a web board for student jobs, but this is available only to registered students. It's called My Careers Service


You are welcome to seek work outside of the LSE, of course, but please do bear in mind that in addition to the contact hours of your degree, you are required to spend a large amount of time in private study and preparation (we expect full-time MSc students to spend 40 hours a week on their studies). 


Most importantly, you should not assume that you will be able to fund your studies by working part-time.


How can I request a reference from a member of faculty?

If you are a current MSc student or an alumnus of this department and you would like a reference from one of our academic staff, please complete this reference request form and submit it by email. Please include as much information as possible as this makes it much easier to write a meaningful reference. You must include ALL of your courses and ALL of your coursework and exam results.


Please allow 15 working days for the reference to be written. Let us know if it must arrive by a certain date and if there are any other special requirements (e.g. sealed envelope).





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