About Our Programs

The Department of Race, Ethnicity, Gender, and Sexuality Studies hosts three program areas: African American Studies, Mexican American Studies, and Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies. These areas provide opportunities for intellectual growth with an emphasis on diasporic, decolonial, and intersectional approaches towards race, ethnicity, gender, and sexuality studies in education.

Degree Programs

The African American Studies Program offers a minor for undergraduate students enrolled at UTSA.  The mission of the African American Studies program is to promote academic and professional excellence through the enhancement of cultural competency skills, enrichment of theoretical knowledge, and advancement of critical thinking related to multiple facets of the African American experience and the African Diaspora.

African American Studies (AAS) both complements and adds cultural diversity value to all fields of study and professions.  The program also prepares undergraduate students interested in pursuing graduate education.  Additionally, students engaging in this program gain insights into working in a variety of professions such as education, business, law, public policy, health care, and STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) fields.

Minor in African American Studies
The Minor in African American Studies program complements and adds cultural diversity value to all fields of study and professions.  This program helps prepare college students toward pursuing graduate degrees.  Additionally, students engaging in this program will gain insights for working in a variety of professions such as education, business, law, public policy, health care, and STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) fields.

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The Mexican American Studies (MAS) Program offers a major for undergraduate students enrolled at UTSA. The mission of the MAS is to draw on the legacy of Mexican American and Chicano activism and history in San Antonio and the Texas-Mexico borderlands to teach, research and analyze the experiences, history, and culture of Mexican-origin, Chicano and Latina/o populations. MAS recognizes UTSA students as agents of conocimiento, preparing them to critically interrogate the sociopolitical, legal, economic, and social conditions that foster the structural marginalization Mexican American, Chicana/o and Latina/o communities are subject to, as well as study and appreciate the mechanisms of resistance, perseverance, and cultural traditions and expressions that challenge that oppression. To do so, MAS cultivates transformative experiences, spaces and relationships that allow students to draw on their conocimiento to produce salient applied research to effect positive social change in their comunidades (communities).

The MAS curricula addresses structural and historical context of the life, history, and culture of Mexican-origin people in the United States. Indeed, this content is grounded in research that recognizes that the positive affirmation of a racial, ethnic, and/or cultural identity role ethnic studies courses provide function to increase the retention, persistence, and graduation rates of students of color. As such, MAS courses helped to cultivate a new generation of educated public citizens empowered to improve the quality of life of Mexican-American and Chicana/o communities in San Antonio, Texas, and across the nation.

In addition, a Bachelor's Degree of Arts in Mexican American Studies (MAS) enhances all fields of study and professions by providing cultural affirmation, appreciation for diversity, and an understanding of systemic inequities. MAS majors can choose from eight areas of concentration:
        Anthropology
        Literary and cultural studies
        History
        Families, communities, and children
        Non-profit management
        Political science
        Sociology
        Spanish

Approximately 80% of MAS majors graduate with dual degrees; one in MAS and the second in the field of their choice.

MAS graduates are valued as bilingual and culturally aware professionals. By offering a range of concentrations from history to public policy, MAS majors gain skills that are invaluable for professions such as education, business, law, public policy, health care, and STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) fields. In addition, the critical analytic tools, theoretical frameworks and methodological approaches used in MAS prepares undergraduate students to pursue graduate education. Current MAS alumni working in the following areas:
        Work in health, non-profit and administrative careers;
        Are business-owners and entrepreneurs;
        Serve as teachers/educators in K-12 schools, colleges, and universities; and
        Completed or are pursuing professional degrees, graduate degrees, or law degrees. 

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Minor in Women’s Studies
All students pursuing a Minor in Women's Studies (WS) are required to complete 18 semester credit hours (6 of which must be upper-division, 3000-4000 level).

Bachelor of Arts Degree in Women’s Studies
The major in Women's Studies provides students with the opportunity to examine the social, historical, political, and cultural experiences of women and men from an interdisciplinary perspective. Emphasis on cross-disciplinary research methods enables students to pursue a theoretically-informed understanding of women and issues of gender and sexuality in diverse U.S. and global cultures and across time.          

The minimum number of semester credit hours required for this degree, including the Core Curriculum requirements, is 120. Thirty-nine of the total semester credit hours required for the degree must be at the upper-division level.

All candidates seeking this degree must fulfill the Core Curriculum requirements and the degree requirements, listed below.

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College of Education and Human Development
Main Building | One UTSA Circle | San Antonio, TX 78249
Phone: 210-458-4370 | education@utsa.edu