PhD curriculum

The School's doctoral program leads to the Doctor of Philosophy in Social Work (PhD) research degree. A minimum of 90 credit hours are required for graduation. The Doctoral Program requires rigorous training in qualitative and quantitative research methods; advanced coursework in social work theory; completion of a cognate area in another discipline; mastery of specialized content areas; and the completion of a PhD dissertation. The program allows for full-time or part-time study.

The following course list applies to the 2021 student cohort and those who join the program after. Students who started prior to 2021 should consult their advisor for a list of courses. 

Some courses are offered on alternating years, so students will work with their advisor and the Doctoral Program Director to develop a plan of work during orientation.

SW Elective Credits

Students may be able to apply up to 25 MSW or post-MSW certificate credits in research, policy and theory courses relevant to the student's proposed area of research as approved by the Director of the Doctoral Program.

Research Methods (8 credits)

  • SW 9400 Qualitative Research Methods in Social Work, Cr. 3
  • SW 9410 Quantitative Research Methods in Social Work, Cr. 3
  • SW 9420 Research Practicum, Cr. 2

Statistics (6 credits)

  • SW 9100 Social Statistics and Data Analysis, Cr. 3
  • SW 9300 Applied Regression Analysis and Generalized Linear Models, Cr. 3

Theory (6 credits)

  • SW 9160 Knowledge Creation and Theory Development, Cr. 3
  • SW 9170 Theories of Problems and Change across the Micro-Macro Continuum, Cr. 3 

Other Required Courses (6 credits)

  • SW 9240 Social Work Education, Cr. 3
  • SW 9450 Writing for Publication and Presentation, Cr. 1
  • SW 9050 First Year Seminar, Cr. 1
  • SW 9650 Preparing for the Job Search, Cr. 1

Cognate Courses (9 credits)

Cognate courses are those other than Social Work that support the candidate's area of research.