Ph.D. Program Courses & Curriculum

*PLEASE NOTE: At this time the program is temporarily pausing admissions. Between the retirement of our eminent doctoral chair and the arrival of several new faculty members with research profiles, the School believes it is the perfect time to review and reinvigorate our doctoral program. We will be able to plan strategically in a new and thoughtful way for the program’s future and the future of our students. We encourage you to check back, as the website will be updated with information about the Doctoral program. 


The curriculum consists of 15 required courses (45 credits) as follows:

Statistics I & II
Research Methods I & II
Research Practicum I & II
Social Welfare Policy Analysis I & II
Organization Theory and Social Welfare Administration
Knowledge Building in Social Work: The Philosophy of Applied 
Social Research
Theories of Social Work
Seminar in Social Work Education
Teaching Practicum
Dissertation Seminar I & II
Three electives

The Research Practicum is a year-long research project conducted under the supervision of SSW faculty. Comprehensive exams take place to determine advancement towards dissertation. An integrative paper designed to showcase students' mastery of policy, research, and theory constitutes the basis for an Oral Defense. The program is designed so that full-time students can complete the course work in three years. Part-time students require four years to complete the coursework. Typically, it takes another one to two years to complete and defend the dissertation.

Class Schedule

Courses are given two days a week in the afternoon and in the evening. Students attend classes on those two days; part-time students attend on the one day in which two classes are given.

Financial Aid

Together with the University’s Graduate School, the School of Social Welfare offers tuition scholarships, graduate assistantships, and other forms of competitive financial aid.

Admission Requirements

All applicants must take the Graduate Record Exam. In addition to the application itself, three letters of reference, a personal statement, and a writing sample are also required. The deadline for all applications is February 1st.

For further information, please contact:

Jamie Weissbach
Program Coordinator
Phone: 631-444-3146

Dr. Iris Cohen Fineberg
Interim Doctoral Chair
Phone: 631-444-3164;