Graduate program director
Kellie E. Carlyle, Ph.D., M.P.H.
Assistant professor, Department of Social and Behavioral Health
Whitney Christake, M.A.
Program website: behavioralhealth.vcu.edu
Refer to the program search function of the online VCU Bulletins for a complete listing of all programs, concentrations and related curricular options.
Apply online at graduate.admissions.vcu.edu.
Social and Behavioral Health, Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)
|Special requirements: M.P.H. or equivalent M.A. or M.S. degree|
Applicants must meet all general admission requirements of the VCU Graduate School.
The VCU Graduate Bulletin website documents the official admission and academic rules and regulations that govern graduate education for all graduate programs at the university. These policies are established by the graduate faculty of the university through their elected representatives to the University Graduate Council.
It is the responsibility of all graduate students, both on- and off-campus, to be familiar with the VCU Graduate Bulletin as well as the Graduate School website and academic regulations in individual school and department publications and on program websites. However, in all cases, the official policies and procedures of the University Graduate Council, as published on the VCU Graduate Bulletin and Graduate School websites, take precedence over individual program policies and guidelines.
General academic regulations for
all graduate students in all graduate programs at VCU
Training to be social and behavioral scientists
Students in the doctoral program in social and behavioral health will acquire the skills to become scientists, educators and scientists/administrators in a broad spectrum of positions and settings. Students will gain a progressive mastery of the current state of the subject matter in the social and behavioral sciences, an ability to synthesize the information and apply this foundation to the identification of key areas of investigation/experimentation and the ability to design and interpret studies that address the questions identified. In addition, students will develop the various means of communicating core social and behavioral science knowledge and particular study designs, results and interpretations to a variety of audiences.
The Ph.D. program in social and behavioral health, the only one of its kind in Virginia, prepares students to conduct theoretically based research and interventions on the social and behavioral determinants of health and disease. In addition to the general VCU Graduate School graduation requirements, a minimum of 50 post-master’s credit hours is required for the doctoral degree, which is expected to involve four years of full-time study. Requirements include 12 credit hours of courses in research methods, nine credit hours of courses in the behavioral and social sciences, one credit hour of responsible conduct of research, four credit hours of departmental seminar and at least six credit hours of elective courses that reflect a student’s research interests. In addition, required research experience includes nine hours of applied research practicum and nine dissertation credit hours. Students who work as graduate research assistants for two years may substitute some or all of the nine credit hours of applied research practicum with electives.
|BIOS/STAT 543 Statistical Methods I||3|
|BIOS/STAT 544 Statistical Methods II||3|
|OVPR 601 Scientific Integrity, OVPR 602 Responsible Scientific Conduct or OVPR 603 Responsible Conduct of Research||1|
|SBHD 638 Applications in Qualitative Research Methods||3|
|SBHD 690 Departmental Seminar (one-credit course taken four times)||4|
|SBHD 693 SBHD Internship (variable credits)||9|
|SBHD 697 Directed Research in Social and Behavioral Health (variable credit course)||9 (minimum)|
|SBHD 610 Behavioral Measurement||3|
|SBHD 630 Theoretical Foundations of Social and Behavioral Health||3|
|SBHD 637 Program Evaluation||3|
|Any graduate-level course(s) approved by adviser||6|
|Additional SBHD course||3|
|Total graduate credit hours required (minimum)||50|
Many students often end up taking more than the minimum number of hours required for a degree program. The total number of hours may vary depending upon the program, nature of research being conducted by a study or in the enrollment or funding status of the student. Students should refer to their program websites and talk with their graduate program directors or advisers for information about typical plans of study and registration requirements.
A graduate student admitted to a program or concentration requiring a final research project, work of art, thesis or dissertation, must qualify for continuing master’s or doctoral status according to the degree candidacy requirements of the student’s graduate program. Admission to degree candidacy, if applicable, is a formal statement by the graduate student’s faculty regarding the student’s academic achievements and the student’s readiness to proceed to the final research phase of the degree program.
Graduate students and program directors should refer to the following degree candidacy policy as published in the VCU Graduate Bulletin for complete information and instructions.
Degree candidacy requirements
As graduate students approach the end of their academic programs and the final semester of matriculation, they must make formal application to graduate. No degrees will be conferred until the application to graduate has been finalized.
Graduate students and program directors should refer to the following graduation requirements as published in the Graduate Bulletin for a complete list of instructions and a graduation checklist.
School of Medicine graduate program policies
The School of Medicine provides policies applicable to all programs administratively housed in the school. Information on doctoral programs is available in the Graduate Bulletin at pubapps.vcu.edu/Bulletins/about/?uid=10046&iid=30114.