Skip to Content

Social Work, Ph.D.

College of Social Work

This doctoral program is designed for scholars whose independent research will drive social change to create a more equitable, just and inclusive society. You'll be a vital part of the only social work doctoral program in South Carolina.

Ready to advance the social work profession and promote social change through outstanding teaching and scholarship? Our leading program features challenging and meaningful coursework, mentored research experiences and a collaborative and scholarly environment. Funding packages and ongoing funding support assistance are available.

Program Highlights

  • Convergence point icon.

    Relevant Research

    Join award-winning research among a diverse faculty across a variety of research areas and opportunities for scholarship.

  • Hands cupping heart icon.

    A Supportive Faculty

    Learn from faculty members who share a deep commitment to mentoring students and helping them thrive as emerging scholars.

  • Lightbulb emitting light icon.

    Broad View

    Gain exposure to diverse methodological approaches to develop the expertise that best fits your interests.

  • Speaker at podium icon.

    Publish and Speak

    Apply your work in a range of opportunities for scholarly publications, national presentations and funding applications.

What You’ll Study

Prepare for your career in research and higher education through coursework in research, theory, and quantitative and qualitative methodology designed to be completed in two to three years. You'll be ready to teach the next generation of social work practitioners and to generate new research that drives social change.

Building Skills

Gain the professional and personal intelligence it takes to have a successful career.

  • Leadership

    Inspiring and guiding others to achieve common goals and reach their full potential

    Data Analysis

    Examining and interpreting information to uncover insights and inform decision making

    Problem Solving

    Identifying, analyzing and resolving problems or challenges using creative and effective strategies

  • Handling Conflict

    Resolving disagreements or disputes between individuals or groups in a fair and constructive manner


    Creating professional written content for inclusion in scholarly journal articles, books and reports

    Public Speaking

    Delivering a message or presentation to an audience effectively and persuasively

Using your degree

Make your college experience the foundation for a successful future.

Learn how alumni use degrees with outcome data from Gamecock GradStats, a service of the University of South Carolina Career Center.

Potential Careers

  • Faculty Member
  • Researcher

Job Titles of Alumni

  • Associate Professor
  • Assistant Professor
  • Executive Director
  • Caseworker

Average Alumni Salary

Five to 10 years after graduation without additional education $82,729

Workplace Settings

  • Education
  • Health Care
  • Nonprofits
  • Government

Employers of Alumni

  • University of South Carolina
  • Winthrop University
  • Mecklenburg County

The USC Social Work Ph.D. program has a curriculum designed to support students in developing analytic and conceptual skills to impact the social work profession.

Tasha M. Childs
Portrait of Tasha M. Childs