PhD Application Checklist

Thank you for your interest in the Graduate College of Social Work! The application for Fall 2015 will be available beginning October 1, 2014.

Online Application and Application Fee

Apply online and submit your nonrefundable fee of $100.00 using the ApplyTexas application.


You will also submit the names of three to five persons who are familiar with your competencies and your potential for doctoral education within your online application. It is recommended that two (2) of the letters be from doctoral-degreed tenure track faculty (i.e., current and/or former graduate level professors from your master’s program). Your references will receive an email with instructions for completing an online recommendation form. Please inform your references to be prepared to attach a letter to accompany the form.

Vita/Resume, Research Statement and Writing Samples

Within your online application, you will upload your Vita/Resume, Research Statement and Writing Samples. Instructions for each are below.


Your Vita or Resume should include your name and contact information, educational background, professional experience, professional and academic memberships, community involvement, awards, professional presentations, and professional publications. 

Research Statement

Complete and submit your research statement online at In this statement we would like for you to inform the committee of a specific primary research interest you plan to pursue during your doctoral education. This statement should reflect your aptitude to pursue innovative, creative, and relevant approaches to address contemporary issues within the field of social work.

As you develop your research statement you may discuss your relevant background, skills, and experiences that have informed your research interests. Additionally, the research statement should include a discussion of your professional aspirations and how pursuing a Ph.D. degree at the University of Houston, Graduate College of Social Work, will help you achieve your goals.

It is critical that your research interests fit well with what our college and faculty can offer so that you may obtain valuable research experience and socialization to academia or other research settings. Therefore it is essential that you identify at least two (2) faculty members at GCSW who can provide you with research and mentoring opportunities. You may visit our faculty directory for a current listing of our faculty members to assist you in determining your research interest. Please be sure to include faculty members in your research statement and your rationale for identifying them.

The research statement should be double-spaced and 4-6 pages in length.

Writing Samples

Your writing sample should be double-spaced, and may include one or more of the following, not to exceed 3 samples:

  • A publication
  • A research paper from the master’s program you attended
  • A research proposal or evaluation from the workplace (must be authored or co-authored by you)
  • If you do not have any of the above, write a literature review or a research proposal not to exceed 25 pages

Official Transcripts

Submit official transcripts from all of your previous college/university work. Transcripts can be sent to the University of Houston Graduate School either electronically or regular mail. Unsealed transcripts issued directly to you will not be accepted. Please let us know on your application all legal names that may appear on any of your transcripts.

Hard copy transcripts can be mailed to:

Regular Mail AddressExpress Mail Address

University of Houston
Graduate Admissions
P.O. Box 3947
Houston, Texas 77253-3947

University of Houston
4800 Calhoun Road
102 E. Cullen Building
Houston, Texas 77204-2012

Official GRE Scores

Submit official scores from the GRE (Graduate Record Exam). Scores should be less than five years old. The University of Houston’s institutional code for the GRE is 6870. Information about costs and test dates at UH may be obtained from UH Student Service Center (Room 204), (713) 743-5444.


All materials must be received no later than January 15. Incomplete applications will not be reviewed by the Ph.D. Admissions Committee. You are encouraged to begin the application process early.


You can check the status of your application as well as update your contact information as needed on Application decisions will be communicated by mail or email.

Scholarship Application

For students interested in applying for GCSW scholarships, the deadline for applications is May 1st. Click here for the scholarship application.

International Applicants

Additional materials are required for international applicants. Please refer to the University of Houston's information for International Applicants.

All records and documents submitted to the GCSW become property of the University and may not be returned. The application fee covers part of the cost of handling the application and is therefore non-refundable.