Ph.D. in Social Work and Doctor of Social Work (DSW)

PhD in Social Work

PhD in Social Work Programs

Earning a doctorate isn't easy at any university. Doing it online has its challenges and also its rewards. Any PhD program or doctoral degree by some other name is going to require a dissertation, which on most campuses requires extensive consultation with and guidance from faculty members. That is not so easily done online, which is why there are not a lot of credible online doctoral programs. The upside to an online PhD in human services is the same as with any online study: if you already have a career in social work you can continue with your job while you study for a new credential. We've assembled a list of accredited doctoral programs in social work and social services that should be equally credible on your resume. A PhD program isn't for everyone; it's a major commitment to study, to research and to extensive writing. But it also results in the penultimate academic achievement.

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1. Capella University offers the Doctor of Social Work (DSW) as a 74 credit hour program with a dissertation requirement. There is a PhD in Human Services degree that touches on several areas of social work specialization: Social & Community Services, Management of Non-Profit Agencies, and Healthcare Administration. The PhD in Counseling Studies covers the clinical counseling focus that many MSW students pursue for licensing reasons.

2. Walden University has a PhD in Human Services degree with several areas of specialization including Clinical Social Work, Counseling, Human Services Administration, and Family Studies & Intervention Strategies. There is also a Social Policy Analysis and Planning area of concentration for social work policy study.

3. Grand Canyon University offers the PhD in Psychology with specialization in Industrial/Organizational Psychology which is an excellent management degree for non-profit and agency administration. The Doctor of Education in Organizational Leadership (EdD) for Behavioral Health is a top level degree for the management of mental health social services.

4. Chicago School of Professional Psychology has a PhD in Psychology with specialization in Organizational Leadership. This degree is a comfortable fit with administrative career positions in social service work, either in a public agency or a non-profit. It is a management degree designed from a psychological perspective that fits into the advocacy role required of a social work manager.

5. Colorado Technical University offers a Doctor of Management degree with specialization in Organizational Management & Change. This field is emerging as an important specialization for social services today in the face of drastic budget cutbacks that have been underway at the state level for a while and are about appear in federal programs.

6. Liberty University offers the PhD in Counseling degree with two specializations, Professional (Clinical) Counseling or Pastoral Care and Counseling. Either degree is applicable to social work career counseling or to counseling management. Pastoral community counseling is a good social work option for a seminarian.

7. Northcentral University has a School of Behavioral and Health Sciences that offers The PhD in Psychology with specialization in Health Psychology, applicable to many of the health education programs offered in social work environments. There is also a PhD in Marriage & Family Therapy with an area of concentration in Child & Adolescent Therapy, an area where social workers are not only involved in therapy but in family intervention as well.

8. University of the Rockies is a college devoted to the study of Psychology and of Organizational Development. The Doctor of Psychology (PsyD) is offered with fourteen choices for emphasis, several of which are in social services areas of expertise. The PsyD in Health & Wellness leads to an educational career. There are additional specializations in Mental Health Administration, Non-Profit Management, and Organizational Diversity.

9. Argosy University has online degree for the Doctor of Education (EdD) in Counseling Psychology. This degree mirrors the MSW in clinical counseling but takes the academic focus to a higher level. There is an EdD in Counselor Education & Supervision and an EdD in Pastoral Community Counseling available on some or all of the Argosy University's nineteen campuses.

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