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   University of South Florida    
 Oct 08, 2021 2020-2021 Graduate 
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Return to: College of Behavioral and Community Sciences

Priority Admission Application Deadlines:

Contact Information

College: Behavioral & Community SciencesContact Information:

The Ph.D. in Behavioral & Community Sciences is an interdisciplinary major focusing on research and policy in the area of behavioral health and community sciences. Behavioral and Community Sciences refers to the development and evaluation of services and interventions that promote resiliency and social well-being for at-risk populations and addresses these issues within the context of community settings.

Major Research Areas: Substance Abuse & Co-Occurring Disorders; Community Based Behavioral Health Systems & Services; Child & Adolescent Behavioral Health; Behavioral Health, Law, and the Justice System; Behavioral Health Disparities;Positive Behavior Intervention & Support.; Disability & Rehabilitation Research & POlicy; and Language and Literacy Assessment and Intervention.

Admission Information

Must meet University Admission and English Proficiency requirements as well as requirements for admission to the major, listed below. 

To be given full consideration for financial assistance, students should apply by December 15 for admission for the Fall semester. 

A bachelor’s GPA of 3.50 or higher based on a 4.00 grading scale.  The completed degree must be in a field related to behavioral and community sciences, e.g., behavioral healthcare, human services, human development, psychology, sociology, anthropology, economics, public health, social work, counseling education, education.GRE with a preferred  minimum of Verbal - 150 (50th percentile), Quantitative- 147 (30th percentile), and Analytical Writing - 4.0 (50th percentile). Although students who have completed a master’s degree are not required to submit GRE scores, all students are encouraged to submit GRE scores because they are considered in applications for fellowship, scholarship, and assistantship opportunities.Students who do not meet the minimum criteria may be admitted based on strong records reflected by other aspects of their applications (GPA, Letters of Recommendation, Writing Samples, and prior research experiences).Evidence of written/analytical skills which will take two-forms:A writing sample, such as a major paper, thesis, or research paper of which the student is the sole author, andA personal goal statement of 2-3 pages that describes why you want to obtain the Ph.D. in Behavioral & Community Sciences. Applicants are expected to communicate with potential advisors to find a good match for one’s research training. The personal statement should cover: how the degree will help you in achieving your professional goals; unique qualities, life experiences, and knowledge related to the field; obstacles overcome to achieve your educational goals thus far; obstacles that may challenge you in pursuing a graduate degree; your research and teaching goals; and the professor you would like to work with and why. Two formal letters of recommendation from faculty members or other professional personnel who have knowledge of the applicant’s academic background, potential for success in graduate school, and/or commitment to a research career. Applicants with a master’s degree: Transcripts from the master’s degree will be evaluated to determine coursework that will be applicable toward the 90 hours of credit required for the doctoral major

Prior to applying for the major, applicants are encouraged to contact faculty with whom they would like to study and discuss the fit between the student’s area of research interest and the faculty member’s research focus.

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Curriculum Requirements

Total Minimum Hours - 90 (Post-Bachelor’s)

Core requirements - 9 credit hoursAdditional required courses - 6 credit hoursResearch/statistics foundation courses - 6 credit hoursAdvanced research courses - 12 credit hoursDidactic courses in behavioral & community sciences - 18 credit hoursSpecialization courses - 9 credit hoursDirected research - 18 credit hoursDissertation - 12 credit hours