Graduate Programs

Degree Programs

Ph.D. in Social Work

The student must complete 90 credit hours, including a dissertation and a research internship. Candidates for the Ph.D. may offer up to 30 hours of graduate credit from other institutions as follows:

  1. Of the 30 graduate transfer credit hours counted toward the Ph.D. degree in social work, 15 of these credits must be in an area directly related to research (e.g., research methods, statistics, a mentored research project, etc.).
    • Of these 15 research-related credit hours, at least 6 credits must have been completed within three calendar years prior to the date the student enrolls in his/her first doctoral class following acceptance into the Ph.D. Program.
    • All 15 research transfer credits must have been successfully completed as prerequisites for the two advanced research methods courses (S726 and S727), the Research Internship (S725), and the Advanced Statistics course.
  1. All students must have successfully completed a graduate-level statistics course within three calendar years before enrolling in the required Advanced Statistics course. Students who have completed a statistics course more than three years before enrolling in the Advanced Statistics course may petition the director of the Ph.D. Program to test out of this requirement.
  1. Any research transfer credits not completed prior to acceptance into the Ph.D. Program must be completed as part of the student’s doctoral studies in accordance with the above provisions.

All courses credited toward the Ph.D. degree must have a minimum grade of B and must receive written approval of the University Graduate School. Specific program requirements include: (1) professional social work component, 33 credit hours; (2) specialization component, 18 credit hours; (3) research component, 21 credit hours; (4) research internship, 6 credit hours; and (5) dissertation, 12 credit hours.

All students in the Ph.D. Program, with the approval of the program director, will select three faculty members to serve as their academic advisors throughout their doctoral studies, one of whom will represent the student’s area of specialization outside the School of Social Work.

Qualifying Examination Process

The qualifying examination process is comprehensive and integrative in nature. Specific guidlines for the completion of the qualifying process are available from the Ph.D. program director.

Admission to Candidacy

Following the passing of the qualification examination and the completion of all course work, the student's advisory committee will submit a Nomination to Candidacy Form to the University Graduate School. Upon approval of the dean, the student will be admitted to candidacy and awarded a Certificate of Candidacy.

Research Proposal

After nomination to candidacy, the student, with the approval of the program director, will select a research committee of no fewer than four faculty members, including a member outside of the School of Social Work. This committee must approve the proposed dissertation topic.

Final Examination

The final examination is the oral defense of the dissertation.