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PhD Admission

Admission Information

The primary purpose of the application process for the PhD Program in Social Welfare is to select students who show the greatest potential for scholarship and for future contributions to the field of social welfare in Hawai‘i and the Pacific Basin. In addition to requirements set forth by the University of Hawai‘i Graduate Division, the Doctoral Program Committee of the School of Social Work looks for evidence of the following when reviewing applications:

  1. Education. Applicants are required to have a Master of Social Work degree from a CSWE accredited school/program, or related Master’s degree.  Prerequisite courses in social work will apply for non-MSW students.  Applicants with MSW degree from foreign countries are required to get their master’s degree approved by the International Social Work Degree Recognition and Evaluation Service of the Council on Social Work Education, which can be found here.  Students are urged to obtain 2 years post-MSW experience in social work which will allow them to teach social work practice courses at a CSWE-accredited school of social work upon graduation.
  2. Scholarly capacity. Applicants are expected to show capacity for advanced academic work and potential for scholarship. The ability to work independently and develop competence to design and carry out rigorous research studies relevant for social work is a critical expectation of the PhD program. Applicants are expected to demonstrate excellent writing skills, and evidence of analytic skills, research interest and capabilities, as part of the admissions application.
  3. Work experience. Applicants with at least two years of experience working with a multicultural population will be preferred.
  4. Career goals. Applicants’ interests and career goals should be compatible with the stated focus of the PhD program.

Tuition and Fees

Please refer to the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa Records & Registration ( website for current information regarding tuition and fees.

For more information, please review the information on this site, or contact Jennifer Kishida, MSW and PhD Program Assistant, at or (808) 956-3831.

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