Light frame low-rise buildings perform relatively well under seismic loads due to their low masses and large energy-dissipation capacity. While safety issues such as loss of life seem to be adequately addressed, the serviceability of these buildings after moderate to severe earthquakes can be compromised. Traditionally, exterior walls in residential buildings (single-family dwellings) have been assigned the lateral load resistance function with partition walls largely neglected. Although extensive studies have been undertaken to develop better understanding of wood-frame construction, few studies have addressed steel stud wall systems. There is an increasing interest in the use of steel stud light-frame systems for residential construction. There is a research void related to information on how structural performance of steel stud walls compare with wood stud systems for interior walls under lateral loading conditions. For interior wall applications, gypsum wall board (GWB) contributes to the lateral load resisting systems, as evidenced by the damage to GWB in past earthquakes. The overall objective of the study reported herein was to develop a better understanding of the differences in behavior of interior GWB sheathed wood stud and steel stud light-frame wall systems under monotonic and cyclic racking loading conditions. It was of interest to also evaluate the effect of finishing GWB joints with tape and joint compound on the lateral load resistance of both construction types.