Advising & Dissertation Committee

Advisor

Upon entering the PhD program, each student is assigned a doctoral advisor. At the end of the first year of study, students are encouraged to review the existing arrangement and decide whether to continue with that faculty member or to choose another advisor from among the Graduate Group faculty. The advisor helps the student prepare an individual educational plan, choose courses, become familiar with the wide array of educational resources at the School and the University, and form a dissertation committee. Students are responsible for initiating meetings with their advisors at regular intervals.

For best practices regarding academic advising, please see University guidelines that promote good mentoring relationship, as well as the Advisee and Advisor Guide for SP2 PhD Students.

Dissertation Committee

With the assistance of their faculty advisor, students select a Dissertation Chair who advises them on the selection of a Dissertation Committee. The Committee consists of a minimum of three persons: two members of the Graduate Group in Social Welfare and one member of the standing faculty from another department/school of the University of Pennsylvania. The Chair of the Dissertation Committee must be a member of the Graduate Group. For a list of current members, click on the Graduate Group link on the left side of the screen.

The Dissertation Committee is responsible for approving the candidate’s plan of dissertation research and the format of the dissertation and for determining the acceptability of the completed dissertation.

Students are responsible for initiating meetings with their dissertation chair and committee members at regular intervals.

SP2 News

Cover of Tell Me How It Ends

Student Life

SP2 Announces Inaugural Race and Social Justice Fellows

Penn’s School of Social Policy & Practice (SP2) is pleased to announce the selection of two exemplary MSW students as...

Image of Mackenzie Fierceton

Student Life

SP2 Student Awarded Prestigious Rhodes Scholarship

University of Pennsylvania May graduate who is currently completing her master’s degree at Penn's School of Social Policy & Practice...

Faculty & Research

Associate Dean of Enrollment Management & Global Outreach Receives Years of Service Award

Mary Mazzola, MSW, EdD, associate dean for enrollment management and global outreach at Penn’s School of Social Policy & Practice...

Valeria Zeballos Doubinko, MSSP '21

Student Life

MSSP+DA Student Named 2020-21 Perry World House Graduate Associate

Valeria Zeballos Doubinko, MSSP ’21, has been selected to join the 2020-21 cohort of Perry World House Graduate Associates. A...

Discover More