PhD in Social Work

The PhD in social work prepares students to conduct research that contributes to the knowledge base of social work, to become leaders in the profession, and to teach social work in postsecondary educational institutions.

To learn more about our program, watch this short video.

Meet Our Current Doctoral Students

Meet Some of Our Recent Alumni

  • Doug Smith, '06, Associate Professor, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, School of Social Work
  • Scott Easton, '11, Assistant Professor of Mental Health, Boston College School of Social Work
  • Kristi Law, '13, Assistant professor, University of Wisconsin at Whitewater, School of Social Work
  • Catherine Burnette, '13, Assistant professor, Tulane University, School of Social Work
  • Jinyu Liu, '13, Assistant Professor, Columbia University, School of Social Work
  • Matthew Vasquez, '14,  Assistant professor, University of Southern Mississippi, School of Social Work
  • Shamra Boel-Studt, ‘14, Assistant professor, Florida State University, College of Social Work
  • Erin Robinson, ‘16, Assistant professor, University of Missouri School of Social Work


Contact Us

For questions about the PhD program (e.g., part-time study, funding, faculty strengths, admissions criteria), email the director of the PhD program, Dr. Guo, For questions about the Combined MSW/PhD program, contact Kate Kemp, program administrator and admissions director, at To verify your School of Social Work admissions file is complete or if you have questions about the application process and forms for MSW or for the PhD degree, contact Tomeka Petersen at

Visit Us

The director of the PhD program would be happy to meet with prospective applicants between August – May. Email her at The program administrator is available year round to answer your questions and to arrange a visit.