The direct track


This track is intended for select students who have completed the BSW and the first year of the MSW with outstanding excellence, and who can devote their entire time to advanced studies towards the Ph.D. – this in order to complete their studies within five years, including the MSW and supplementary studies. These students study in a special program, as detailed below.



Students whose final grade for the BSW is at least 90 and who finished the first year of the MSW with a grade of at least 92 may apply for this track.

Students who meet these requirements should apply to the school’s secretary for teaching in order to find out about the rest of the process.

The number of places in this track is limited.


Structure and extent of the study program

Students in the direct doctoral track will register for a MSW program and complete two full years of study in a research MSW program. Their study plan will be constructed according to the intended advanced studies and must be approved by the head of the MSW program and the chair of the school’s committee for doctoral studies.

  1. The structure of the study plan will be similar to that required in research MA programs, with the possibility of slight changes on the basis of personal counselling (including two research seminars). The total number of credits required of students in the direct track is 38.
  2. Instead of a thesis, the direct-track student will write a research proposal for his/her doctoral dissertation [= “research proposal”] and may submit it to the Research Students Authority after registering as a Stage I research student (see the conditions for progress to Stage I research student below).
  3. The direct-track student will be required to take at least 24 credits in the first year of studies, and to achieve an average of at least 90.
  4. The direct-track student will be required to take the compulsory courses common to all MSW tracks (table A in the course catalogue).
  5.  The direct-track student will be accepted into one of the following programs: general-integrative (table B in the course catalogue); direct therapy (table C); welfare services policy and administration (table D). Of the 38 credits requires by the direct track program, s/he will take 18 credits common to all students and 18 credits in the specific program, according to the table in the course catalogue. According to the decision of the program head, the student will be required to take a 2-credit reading course in addition.

To view the course catalogue, click here. The course catalogue shows compulsory courses (table A) as in paragraph (d) above; and the courses of the general-integrative program (table B), direct therapy program (table C) and welfare services policy and administration program (table D), as in paragraph (e) above.


The study program enables students to choose elective courses so that they form a “specialization”. Specializations are offered in children and family welfare, community work, trauma, and mental health rehabilitation. Within the welfare services and policy program, it is possible to specialize in social policy or in welfare services administration. For details of these specializations, see the relevant section of the MSW program.