Graduate Certificate in Research and Evaluation

The Graduate Certificate in Research and Evaluation was developed for individuals who are interested in learning advanced research and evaluation skills necessary to engage in evidence-based practice across all levels of practice in social work and social welfare. The Certificate prepares students to frame evaluation or research questions and to use quantitative and qualitative tools to assess the outcomes and effectiveness of efforts to deal with social problems. It also prepares students with skills to translate research into practice theory and interventions.  This certificate may also be of interest to individuals who are considering obtaining a doctoral degree in social work but may need more time to prepare an application or who wish to "test the waters" prior to admission into a doctoral program. All courses in the proposed certificate program are drawn from existing courses within the PhD Program curriculum. Read the university's gainful employment disclosure.


  • Research and Evaluation Certificate applications are accepted throughout the year


  • Applicants must meet the admission standards of the Graduate School and the School of Social Work.
  • Completion of a master's degree in social work, counseling or related human services field.
  • Two or more years of post-master's professional experience in social work or related human services field. (Preferred)
  • Minimum grade point average of 3.0 in previous a master's degree program; 3.5 GPA is recommended.

Program requirements

Candidates for the certificate must achieve a minimum grade point average of 3.0 and complete 18 credits as outlined below in designated advanced graduate courses. The certificate must be completed within three years of entering the program. 

Both full-time and part-time students will be permitted to enroll in the certificate program. All students must have a plan of work that is developed upon admission. Progress toward certificate completion will be discussed in the student's annual review. 


These courses include offerings in social work theory, advanced statistics and research methods. Further, students will complete an applied research practi­cum. All course work must be completed in accordance with the academic procedures of the School of Social Work and the Grad­uate School governing graduate scholarship and degrees; see sec­tions beginning under Academic Regulations (M.S.W.) and Academic Regulations, Graduate, respectively.

The following courses (18 credits) are required:

  • Practice and Research (3 credits)
    • SW 9160 Knowledge Creation and Theory Development for Social Science Research (Cr. 3)
  • Research Methods in Social Work, with specific content and training related to evidence-based practice research (6 credits)
    • SW 9400 Qualitative Research Methods in Social Work (Cr. 3)
    • SW 9410 Quantitative Research Methods in Social Work (Cr. 3)
  • Social Work Applied Research Practicum, with spe­cific content and training related to evidence-based practice research (2 credits)
    • SW 9420 Research Practicum (Cr. 2)
  • Statistics (6 credits)
    • SW 9100 Social Statistics and Data Analysis (Cr. 3)
    • SW 9300 Applied Regression & Generalized Linear Models (Cr. 3)
  • Writing (Cr. 1)
    • SW 9450 Writing for Publication and Presentation (Cr. 1)

Admission process

Applications are accepted throughout the year. Application materials include:

  • Submission of a written statement of interest, personal resume, all undergraduate and graduates transcripts.
  • Three letters of recommendation, two of which must be academic references characterizing the applicant's potential to engage in social work research and evaluation.
  • Personal interview with Program Director and/or members of the PhD Program Steering Committee

If interested, please apply now


Stella Resko, PhD
PhD Program Director and Professor