All schools & programs > School of Social Welfare >

Doctor of Philosophy in Social Work

Visit their website » Print...

Ph.D. Degree Requirements

The program requires a minimum of 54 credit hours. This total includes 24 hours of required courses, 12 hours of electives, a qualifying paper, a comprehensive examination process, and the dissertation. In fulfilling the elective hours, students may take graduate-level courses in any substantive area or research skills necessary for successful completion of their goals. Students can fulfill this requirement by taking electives in social science or other relevant graduate disciplines. Before students are certified as eligible for candidate status, they must complete course requirements, a qualifying paper, and a dissertation proposal.

Commuting for 1 or 2 days a week is possible. Required course work can be completed in 2 years. Additional time is needed to complete the qualifying papers and dissertation. The program can be completed in 4 years of focused work. Students may start on a part-time basis but eventually must spend 1 year in residence, which entails 2 semesters of full-time course work (9 hours) and may include one summer session (6 hours); or a combination of 6 hours of course work and half-time appointment as a teaching or research assistant for 2 semesters.

Doctoral Courses (54 credit hours)

SW 978 Research Design and Methods 3
SW 979 Methods of Qualitative Inquiry 3
SW 980 History and Philosophy of Social Work
SW 981 Advanced Quantitative Research Methods
SW 982 Social Welfare Policy
SW 983 Advanced Quantitative Research Methods II 3
SW 984 Social Work Practice: Identifying and Improving "Best Practices"
SW 985 Theory for Research: _____
SW 987 (optional elective) Teaching Social Work: Philosophy and Methods
SW 988 (optional elective) Mixing Methods in Social Science Research (3)  
Substantive electives 12
SW 999 Dissertation 18

The University of Kansas prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, ethnicity, religion, sex, national origin, age, ancestry, disability, status as a veteran, sexual orientation, marital status, parental status, gender identity, gender expression and genetic information in the University’s programs and activities. The following person has been designated to handle inquiries regarding the non-discrimination policies: Director of the Office of Institutional Opportunity and Access,, 1246 W. Campus Road, Room 153A, Lawrence, KS, 66045, (785)864-6414, 711 TTY.