What does the PhD program focus on?

The Ph.D. program at the University of Kentucky attempts to prepare social work educators and scholars who are competent to teach and to conduct needed research in their areas of specialization.  Our goal is for our graduates to publish regularly and often in professional journals to enlighten colleagues and others concerned about the same social problems.  We want educators who can bring their research into the classroom and prepare students who will also make contributions to the social work profession.
At the University of Kentucky, many students develop expertise in such fields as child welfare, substance abuse, the health field, issues within the profession (burnout, stress, PTSD, etc.), the evaluation of teaching, and so on.  Each student develops several research projects during the course of the program and these help contribute to an individual’s research trajectory.  Students are not expected to fit into a predetermined set of “concentrations” but are encouraged to design one that best meets his/her plans for future scholarship and research.  It is important, however, that at least one faculty member with expertise in that area can be identified to mentor the student.

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