Doctor of Philosophy in Social Work (PhD)
The PhD in Social Work at UBC is a research degree. Built around a small number of common courses, the program draws on the diverse range of courses available across the campus to advance the student's individualized plan of study.
What makes the program unique?
Our students come from around the world and are supervised by faculty with expertise in their particular field of study. No student is admitted without the commitment of a designated supervisor.
TOEFL (ibT) Overall Score Requirement
IELTS Overall Score Requirement
8 students graduated between 2005 and 2013. Of these, career information was obtained for 7 alumni (based on research conducted between Feb-May 2016):
RI (Research-Intensive) Faculty: typically tenure-track faculty positions (equivalent of the North American Assistant Professor, Associate Professor, and Professor positions) in PhD-granting institutions
TI (Teaching-Intensive) Faculty: typically full-time faculty positions in colleges or in institutions not granting PhDs, and teaching faculty at PhD-granting institutions
Term Faculty: faculty in term appointments (e.g. sessional lecturers, visiting assistant professors, etc.)
Sample Employers in Higher EducationLangara College (2)
Mount Royal University
University of Northern British Columbia
Vancouver Island University
Sample Employers Outside Higher EducationProvincial Health Services Authority
Providence Health Care
Sample Job Titles Outside Higher EducationSocial Worker
Practice Leader for Social Work
PhD Career Outcome SurveyYou may view the full report on career outcomes of UBC PhD graduates on outcomes.grad.ubc.ca.
DisclaimerThese data represent historical employment information and do not guarantee future employment prospects for graduates of this program. They are for informational purposes only. Data were collected through either alumni surveys or internet research.
Tuition / Program Costs
|Fees||Canadian Citizen / Permanent Resident / Refugee / Diplomat||International|
|Installments per year||3||3|
|Tuition per installment||$1,600.60||$2,811.98|
|Tuition per year||$4,801.80||$8,435.94|
|Int. Tuition Award (ITA) per year (if eligible)||$3,200.00 (-)|
|Other Fees and Costs|
|Student Fees (yearly)||$923.38 (approx.)|
|Costs of living (yearly)||starting at $16,884.10 (check cost calculator)|
All fees for the year are subject to adjustment and UBC reserves the right to change any fees without notice at any time, including tuition and student fees. In case of a discrepancy between this webpage and the UBC Calendar, the UBC Calendar entry will be held to be correct.
This list shows faculty members with full supervisory privileges who are affiliated with this program. It is not a comprehensive list of all potential supervisors as faculty from other programs or faculty members without full supervisory privileges can request approvals to supervise graduate students in this program.
Charles, Grant (Psychosocial oncology, intellectual disabilities, family interventions and at risk youth)
Kruk, Edward Andrew (Welfare rights, child protection, school social work, hospital social work, family services, family mediation and addiction)
Marshall, Sheila (Adolescence and parent-adolescent relationships, Adolescent social identity development and adolescent-parent interactions)
O'Connor, Deborah (family support to frail or mentally impaired seniors; formal support services, Dementia, the interface between living with dementia, family care, and the use of formal support services)
Riano-Alcala, Pilar (Lived experience of violence, Historical Memory and the politics of commemoration and witnessing, Forced migration (internal displacement and refuge), Critical and participatory methodologies, Community organizing, everyday resistance and social repair, Public art)
Stainton, Timothy (Developmental Disability, Disability, Social Policy, History of Developmental Disability, Philosophy of Welfare)
Wright, Margaret (Child sexual abuse, sentencing, criminal justice programmes, Analysis of judicial decision-making in cases involving child sexual abuse, decision-making about children)
Yan, Miu Chung (Issues related to settlement and integration of immigrants and refugees, labour market experience of new generation youth from racial minority immigrant families, and community building roles and functions of neighbourhood-level place-based multiservice organizations )
Recent Doctoral Citations
- Dr. Kristin Carol Kendrick
"Dr. Kendrick examined the role of relationships in sexual assault disclosures. She found that survivor relationships with peers to whom they described their assaults shaped the responses survivors received. By further understanding responses to disclosures, this research provides insight into how to improve support to sexual assault survivors." (November 2015)
- Dr. Carolyn Ann Oliver
"Dr. Oliver examined how child protection workers interpreted strengths-based practice, an approach focussing on client strengths and goals. Study outcomes included recommendations to help child welfare agencies support this approach and a model for making strengths-based relationships with mandated clients." (May 2014)
- Dr. Sydney Michelle Weaver
"Dr. Weaver conducted the first known qualitative study with marginalized drug-using fathers. They were partners of patients in a harm reduction maternity unit serving poor, substance-using pregnant women from Vancouver's downtown east side. This study revealed the nature and negative impact of father exclusion on these mothers, fathers and families." (November 2013)
- Dr. Debra Sue Nelson
"Dr. Nelson examined the ways in which social workers help urban Aboriginal children in foster care maintain connections to their culture, family, and community. This research illuminated the complexity of balancing permanency needs with cultural rights and the ongoing importance of family and culture for Aboriginal children in out-of-home care." (May 2013)
- Dr. Meaghen Fletcher Johnston
"Dr. Johnston examined how adolescents who are living with a progressive life-threatening neurodegenerative illness construct meaningful future self-representations. Findings reveal a range of possible selves both with and without the illness. Adolescents describe future thinking as a required activity for coping, personhood, and decision-making." (May 2013)