Online Doctoral Degrees in Social Work

An online doctoral degree in social work may provide individuals with leadership skills needed to advocate for social policy change. In this three to five-year program, students may learn how to build awareness of social issues and apply theories learned to develop new approaches to social issues. Program coursework may include dissertation preparation courses along with major-specific social work classes including leadership in social work, contemporary issues, and advanced knowledge in social work.

Upon completion of the program, students may gain higher-level employment. Doctoral degree graduates may find employment in social policy programs, wellness programs, government agencies, non-profit organizations, and academia.

Program Overview

  • Prerequisite: Bachelor’s Degree at minimum
  • Program Length: Three to five years to complete
  • Post-Grad Options: Employment
  • Projected Employment Growth: 25% (2010-2020)*

Program Coursework

The curriculum for a doctoral degree in social work may integrate core coursework with research-heavy dissertation classes. These classes teach students how to lead social service programs, advocate for public policy changes, and utilize current technology to advance the effectiveness of social service. Core social work online courses may include the following:

  • Advanced Knowledge of Social Work
  • Leadership in Social Work
  • Contemporary Issues in Social Work
  • Methods of Inquiry in Action Research
  • Applying Action Research
  • Qualitative Research Methods
  • Theory Development

Career Options

Students who successfully complete the program may explore career opportunities in academia, healthcare, mental health, community wellness, and elder care. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, social work employment is projected to increase by 25% from 2010-2020.*

Possible careers include:

  • University Professor
  • Clinical Social Worker
  • Human Services Director
  • Clinical Director
  • Non-profit Executive

*U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Outlook Handbook

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