Mission Statement

The mission of the University of Georgia School of Social Work PhD Program, founded in 1990, is to prepare social work scholars to situate their teaching and research in history, philosophy, and theories of social work and social welfare, with two-fold emphasis: (1) producing scholars who have the capacity to work interdisciplinarily through an epistemologically diverse, research-intensive program of study, and (2) producing social work educators through instructional and mentored experiential learning opportunities.

Research Goals

Students will be able to:

  1. Develop knowledge in their particular field of study.
  2. Situate research and ideas in the philosophical, ideological, and historical perspectives that have shaped the field of social welfare and the profession of social work.
  3. Develop theory-informed conceptual models.
  4. Conduct research that is guided by theory.
  5. Identify and articulate philosophical assumptions of their research.
  6. Conceptualize research questions that have implications for persistent and emergent social problems.
  7. Critically synthesize and evaluate the strengths and limitations of published work.
  8. Understand and apply technical aspects of a broad range of methodological approaches.
  9. Use data analytical software.
  10. Design and/or conduct ethical research.
  11. Disseminate knowledge that contributes to the advancement of social work research, practice and policy.
  12. Demonstrate the ability to work on collaborative research teams.

Teaching Goals

Students will be able to:

  1. Understand the place of social work education within the larger context of higher education.
  2. Understand the ways in which social, political, economic and historical contexts bear upon social work education.
  3. Develop a teaching philosophy.
  4. Facilitate discussions on issues related to social justice.
  5. Understand and use/apply a variety of instructional strategies.
  6. Create a classroom climate that is inclusive of diverse students and learning styles.
  7. Teach social work courses.

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