Does Social Work Need a "Practice Doctorate"?

Jeane Anastas, Lynn Videka

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


In the past few years, new "practice doctorate" programs have been mounted by some schools of social work with traditional Ph. D. programs. This trend is explored in relation to the purposes of doctoral education, specifically preparing stewards of the discipline as compared to "stewards of the enterprise." Arguments advanced for and against this development in social work education are reviewed in the context of the emergence of practice doctorates in psychology, nursing and public health. Characteristics of these new doctoral programs in social work, which all focus on clinical social work, are described. Wider discussion of the concept and purposes of the "practice doctorate" in social work is needed in order to safeguard the gains made in research education at the doctoral level and to advance practice-based knowledge and scholarship for the future.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)268-276
Number of pages9
JournalClinical Social Work Journal
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jun 2012


  • Practice doctorate
  • Research and practice
  • Social work doctorate
  • Social work education

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


Dive into the research topics of 'Does Social Work Need a "Practice Doctorate"?'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this