Doctor of Philosophy in Social Work
Degree Awarded: Ph.D.
Program Webpage: http://louisville.edu/kent/
The Commonwealth's first doctoral program in social work offers the opportunity for academically motivated master's level social workers to continue their studies at the doctoral level.
Application to the Doctoral Program
To apply to the doctoral program in social work send the following materials by December 15th to:
- Completed Graduate Admissions Application
- Application for Admission to the UL Ph.D. in Social Work Program
- Official transcripts from each college/university attended, and documentation of the receipt of a Master's Degree in Social Work, e.g. MSW, MSSW, from a CSWE accredited program or international equivalent.
- Official report of GRE scores
- Three recommendations (at least two from academicians)
- Application fee of $60 (if UofL is the most recent University you attended, the application fee is $30)
- A current resume
- A sample of scholarly writing
- A personal statement of career goals, research interests, and reasons for pursuing doctoral studies (no more than 3 pages).
The admission process involves the following:
- Review of application materials by the doctoral admissions committee
- Admission committee interviews with those recommended
- Recommendation to the School of Interdisciplinary and Graduate Studies
Doctoral Admission Requirements
Students are expected to hold master’s degrees in Social Work, i.e. MSW, MSSW, from programs accredited by the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE), or international equivalents. Two years of full time post-master's experience is advised.
Four-year policy: Doctoral students are expected to have taken their comprehensive exam by the time they are in the program four years, and complete the program in four additional years.
Data Analysis and Writing Policy: Doctoral students in the Kent School of Social Work may not arrange for anyone to analyze their data or write parts of their dissertations; rather, they should consult with their committee members if assistance is needed. Students may ask professional editors or others to edit their writing for grammar and other canons of writing.
Cumulative Total Hours
Advanced Research Design & Analysis I
Advanced Research Design & Analysis II
Advanced Research Design & Analysis III
Professional Seminar I
Professional Seminar II
Teaching in Social Work
Theory I: Change Theories in Social Work
Ethics, Social Work, and Society
Theory II: Theory Development
Theory III: Advanced Analysis of Social Welfare Problems
Advanced Measurement in Social Work Research
Advanced Qualitative Research
Individualized Studies and Dissertation Hours
Doctoral Comprehensive Examination
The purpose of the comprehensive exam is to provide a format in which students can demonstrate their abilities to apply and integrate the whole of their educational experiences by adequately addressing complex questions pertinent to social work's current and developing knowledge base, and their individual research areas. A student is eligible to take the comprehensive exam upon successful completion of 50 credits of core and individualized course work. Students are expected to provide answers that integrate knowledge from all required courses. Following the passage of the comprehensive exam, students are admitted to candidacy status.
After admission to candidacy, students proceed to propose, complete, and defend their dissertations. The dissertation must represent independent research and should be based on original research questions or hypotheses. This process includes (a) a concept paper, (b) a formal proposal, and (c) conducting the research and writing the dissertation. Dissertation committees have at least five members, one of whom is from the University of Kentucky.
Associate Dean for Academic Affairs
Director of Ph.D. Program in Social Work
Associate Dean for Research