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Boston College School of Social Work
PhD Programs

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Patricia Yu, PhD '14, was selected to be a 2014-2015 Health and Aging Policy Fellow, a competitive fellowship for health professionals working to make a positive contribution to policies that affect older adults.  Read more on the Blog »


PhD Information Session Webinar

To learn more about the PhD program at BCSSW please watch the PhD Information Session Webinar. The program director and current Boston College PhD students give an overview about the program.

PhD Programs

Boston College School of Social Work is home to a highly productive community of scholars whose research advances the field of social welfare and the practice of social work. Join this unique community, and our curriculum will prepare you to excel as a researcher and teacher in leading academic and social welfare institutions worldwide.

We nurture independence and original thinking to let you craft innovative research and constructive policy agendas for social change. You will develop expertise in:

  • A Substantive Area of Social Work providing the foundation for your advanced research.
  • A Social or Behavioral Science with theory and empirical findings of causes, dynamics, and outcomes of social work interventions.
  • Research Methods necessary to effectively advance knowledge in the field.
  • Teaching Methods to pass knowledge and skills to the next generation of scholars and practitioners.
  • Communication Skills to impart the results of your scholarship, through writing and speaking, to the social work community.

Three PhD Curriculums

Boston College School of Social Work offers three separate PhD curriculums:

PhD in Social Work
The curriculum plan for the PhD in Social Work is designed to prepare doctoral students with both the training and expertise to be the very best teachers, scholars, and researchers.

MSW/PhD Program in Social Work
If you already have a master's degree, but you don't yet have a master's degree in social work, our combined MSW/PhD Program curriculum will let you work toward both degrees simultaneously and finish in significantly less time than it takes to pursue each separately.

PhD in Social Welfare*
The PhD in Social Welfare provides students from partner universities in Latin America the ability to combine the strengths of the Boston College School of Social Work and those of their home institutions. In this cross disciplinary program, the curriculum is designed so that students take classes while alternating residency between their home universities and Boston College.

* Please note that the School of Social Work will not be accepting any applications for the International Social Welfare program for the 2017-18 admissions cycle.


Go to Course Descriptions and Schedules »