In 1878, the Fathers of the Congregation of the Holy Ghost and the Immaculate Heart of Mary established a College of Arts and Letters, which was incorporated in 1882 as Pittsburgh Catholic College of the Holy Ghost with authority to great degrees in the arts and sciences. In 1911, the College and University Council of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania extended the charter to university status and approved the amendment in favor of the corporate title, Duquesne University. Since that time, the Graduate School in the College has grown significantly, now encompassing nine departments, several Centers and Institutes, and offering over two dozen graduate degrees and certificates.

Mission and Philosophy

College Mission Statement: "The College prepares students for productive and creative lives of service in a rapidly changing world. We teach students to think, write, and speak clearly and critically, so they can seek truth about God, themselves, and society, and contribute to their families, communities, businesses, and professions."

Centers and Facilities

Digital history is an exciting new format of disseminating history to the public and scholars using web-based mediums and platforms. The Digital History Lab brings tools and essential skills training to graduate students earning a traditional or public history M.A. in the History Department at Duquesne University.

The lab has state-of-the-art hardware and cutting edge software that students and faculty are utilizing for course projects and community outreach. The lab features five Mac and Dell computer stations. Four of these double as oral history transcription stations, and two are designed to handle special projects.
The Media Department has three primary labs available for use: 205 College Hall and 345 College Hall for PC software and 336 College Hall for Mac software.

The labs can be accessed on a 24-hour basis (except during posted class times) by using your ID card to swipe into the rooms. Cards are activated at the beginning of each semester. It usually takes two weeks for your card to become activated.

The 205 lab makes use of a Media Site recording system, allowing users to view class sessions live or later.
The Psychology Clinic is the primary training facility for the doctoral students in Duquesne University's clinical psychology program. The doctoral students provide all services under the supervision of licensed clinical faculty members and selected licensed adjunct faculty psychologists in the community. Affordable services are available to Duquesne University students and employees as well as to the greater Pittsburgh Communities. Services are provided with exceptional respect for confidentiality and a commitment to diversity, and in a comfortable, pleasant setting.
The purpose of CIQR ("seeker") is to develop and explore interpretive and qualitative research methods as well as their practical implications.

Duquesne University has established a reputation as a locus for interpretive and qualitative research in the humanities, with phenomenological, hermeneutic, post-structural, critical theory and feminist research in departments such as philosophy, communications and English literature.

Several social science departments nourish qualitative approaches in their graduate programs. The psychology department has a long history of developing phenomenological, psychoanalytic and post-structural methods. The sociology department has developed visual and traditional ethnographic methods as well as social action research.

Departments outside the liberal arts have attracted faculty whose work advances qualitative research in fields where quantitative research has traditionally been required. Faculty members in the nursing school utilize ethnomethodology or grounded theory. Others in the health sciences adopt phenomenological approaches. Faculty in the school of education engage in semiotic and social justice research.

CIQR brings together a diverse group of faculty and graduate students interested in qualitative and interpretive methodology.
This interdisciplinary Center cross-lists courses with a number of departments and programs, offers a graduate certificate or concentration.

For the Concentration, a total of 9 graduate credit-hours (3 courses) of WSGS courses officially cross-listed with courses offered by the various graduate programs.

For the Certificate, a total of 15 graduate credit-hours (5 courses) of WSGS courses officially cross-listed with courses offered by the various graduate programs.

All requirements listed below are for both the Concentration and the Certificate:

  • At least one WSGS course must be in the student's own discipline.
  • At least one WSGS course must be in a discipline other than the student's own--or a course that is approved as substantially interdisciplinary (even if taught within the student's own department).
  • Students may petition to have one course not listed as WSGS accepted if it will have a substantial women's and gender studies component and if the student engages in a major project or paper in the course in the field of women's and gender studies.
  • No more than one course may be a Directed Study.
  • All courses must be passed with at least a "B" grade.
  • A thesis or dissertation that focuses substantially on issues of gender may count as one of the required courses.

Course Modifications

In addition to the above courses, students may also submit a proposal to substitute a non-WGS course to fulfill a requirement for the WGS Graduate Certificate or Concentration. Consult the specifications prior to submitting a proposal.


Students register for the Graduate Certificate or Concentration Program by completing the enrollment form and scheduling a meeting with the Director of the Center for Women's and Gender Studies. It is best for graduate students to enroll as early as possible in their graduate program to discuss their program of study for the Certificate or Concentration. Students are then to meet with the Director each term before registering for courses to seek the Director's approval of courses they take for the Certificate or Concentration.

Course Completion

At the end of each semester, students in the Certificate/Concentration Programs should submit a Course Completion form for all WGS courses taken that term.


Graduate students should meet with the director to complete the Women's and Gender Studies Certificate or Concentration graduation steps.

Conference Funding

A limited amount of conference funding is available each year for WSGS graduate students presenting work related to women's, gender, and/or sexuality studies. Contact the Center for Women's and Gender Studies for more information, or email us your application for WGS Graduate Conference Funding and all relevant forms.
The Simon Silverman Phenomenology Center, founded in 1980, is an embodied expression of the phenomenological orientation of Duquesne University, especially found in the graduate programs in Philosophy and Psychology.

The goal of the Simon Silverman Phenomenology Center is to promote and facilitate original phenomenological research, and thereby add to the corpus of literature in all disciplines, especially in continental philosophy, psychology as a human science, the philosophy and ethics of communication and rhetoric, and theology.

Located on the first floor of Duquesne's Gumberg Library, the Phenomenology Center's Collections form part of the Library's special collections. The Center acquires materials in all fields, wherever a phenomenological approach is used or criticized. These holdings include purchased and donated works in phenomenological philosophy and psychology, as well as geography, music, ophthalmology, pedagogy, law, nursing, psychology, theology, and communications. The Center also holds the entire personal libraries of Erwin Straus, Stephan Strasser, Aron Gurwitsch, Amedeo Giorgi, and Adriaan Peperzak, as well as books from the collections of Jan Bouman, Charles Maes, Rolf von Eckartsberg, André Schuwer, O.F.M., and Edward L. Murray.

Administration and Program Directors

Kristine Blair, Ph.D.

John Kern, Ph.D.
Associate Dean

Linda Rendulic
Assistant to the Dean
Michael Irwin, Ph.D.
Derek Hook, Ph.D.
Anthony Wachs, Ph.D.

Erik Garrett, Ph.D.
Sarah Wright, Ph.D.
Joris Gielen, Ph.D.
Philipp Stelzel, Ph.D.
John Kern, Ph.D.
Zeynep Tanes Ehle, Ph.D.
Lanei Rodemeyer, Ph.D. 
Radu Bordeianu, Ph.D.

Graduate Degrees

  • Applied and Public Sociology
  • Women's and Gender Studies
  • Applied and Public Sociology
  • Catholic Healthcare Ethics
  • Communication
  • Corporate Communication
  • English
  • Healthcare Ethics
  • History
  • Philosophy
  • Public History
  • Rhetoric & Philosophy of Communication
  • Theology
  • Leadership
  • Media Arts & Technology
  • Catholic Healthcare Ethics
  • Clinical Psychology
  • English
  • Healthcare Ethics
  • Philosophy
  • Rhetoric
  • Theology