HIV/AIDS Community Stakeholder Town Hall

Repeal, Replace & Retract: Implications of Obamacare Reforms for Social Work Practice

Global Advocacy Fair

Newman Institute andTrustus Theatre Play and Panel Discussion

Ronald O. Pitner, PhD, ACSW

Associate Professor; I. DeQuincey Newman Endowed Chair in Peace and Social Justice; Director, Newman Institute for Peace and Social Justice


  • PhD, Social Work and Psychology (social); University of Michigan
  • MSW, Interpersonal Practice, University of Michigan
  • MA, Experimental Psychology, University of Tennessee
  • BA, Psychology, Lee College

Dr. Pitner is the I. DeQuincey Newman Endowed Chair in Peace and Social Justice and currently the Director of the Newman Institute. His research interests are broadly focused on using social psychological, community, and developmental theories to examine social issues such as oppression, prejudice, poverty, and interpersonal forms of violence, as well as their various intersections. His secondary interests focus on multicultural and anti-oppressive social work practices, and the development of critical consciousness. Most of Dr. Pitner’s research and writings have focused on examining how contextual factors affect children’s and adolescents’ evaluations of interpersonal forms of violence at school. His research has expanded to also examine the ways that residents who live in high-crime areas can collectively work together to address neighborhood safety concerns. Several of his most recent writings have also focused on diversity and social justice-related issues in higher education.


  1. Linking Theory to Research through Conceptual Models (Graduate level-PhD)
  2. Evaluating Social Work Practice (Graduate level-MSW)
  3. Evaluation of Programs and Services (Graduate level-MSW)
  4. Evaluation Research in Social Work (Graduate level-MSW)
  5. Exploring Diversity and Social Justice in Social Work Practice (Graduate level-MSW)
  6. Global Social Welfare and Human Rights (Undergraduate level-BSW/BA/BS)
  7. Human Behavior (Graduate level-MSW)
  8. Human Behavior in the Social Environment II (Graduate level-MSW)
  9. Human Diversity (Graduate level-MSW)
  10. Introduction to Psychology (Undergraduate level-BA/BS)
  11. Social Work with Diverse and Oppressed Populations (Undergraduate level-BSW)
  12. Social Work Research Methodologies (Graduate level-MSW)


  1. Social cognition, prejudice, stereotypes, and stigma
  2. Youth violence and social-cognitive processing
  3. Social cognitive relationship between interpersonal forms of violence and the social and physical context
  4. Youth and community-based civic engagement
  5. Race and racial inequalities
  6. Social cognitive aspects of multicultural social work, anti-oppressive practice, social disparities and social justice


  • Academy of Certified Social Workers (ACSW)
  • American Psychological Association (APA)
  • Association for Contemplative Mind in Higher Education (ACMHE)
  • Council for Social Work Education (CSWE)
  • National Association of Social Workers (NASW)
  • Society for Community Research and Action (SCRA)
  • Society for the Psychological Study of Social Issues (SPSSI)
  • Society for Social Work and Research (SSWR)

Specializations: NA


  • I. DeQuincey Newman Endowed Chair in Peace and Social Justice, University of South Carolina (2016 – 2021)
  • Fellow, Pipeline for Academic Leaders Program (PAL), University of South Carolina (2014 – 2015)
  • Poster awarded the Society for Community Research and Action (SCRA) Certificate of Excellence at the
  • 121st Annual Convention of the American Psychological Association, Honolulu, HI. (2013)
  • Breakthrough Rising Star, Office of the Vice President for Research, University of South Carolina (2013)


Priester, M.A., Pitner, R. & Lackey, R. (In Press). Exposure to racial diversity and student levels of color-blindness and self-perceived racism. Journal of Ethnic & Cultural Diversity in Social Work.

Pitner, R., Priester, M.A., Lackey, R., & Duvall, D. (In Press). A dedicated diversity course or an infusion model? Exploring which strategy is more effective in social work pedagogy. Journal of Social Work Education.

Nelson, E., Pitner, R., & Pratt, Carla. (In Press). Assessing the viability of race-neutral alternatives in law school admissions. Iowa Law Review, 102 (5).

Seokwon, Y., Moon, S.S., & Pitner, R. (In Press). Effective treatments of late life depression in longterm care facilities. Research on Social Work Practice. **

Pitner, R., Moore, H., Capp, G., Benbenishty, R., Astor, R.A. (In Press). Prevention of violence, aggression, and bullying in schools. In P. Sturmey (Ed.). The Wiley handbook of violence and aggression. Volume 3, Societal interventions. Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons Publisher. **

Capp, G., Moore, H., Pitner, R., Iachini, A., Astor, R.A.., & Benbenishty, R. (2017). Promoting school safety: How educators and school leaders can address and prevent school violence and victimization. In G. Noblit (Ed.). Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Education. New York: Oxford Press. DOI: 10.1093/acrefore/978019024093.013.78**

Berkowitz, R., Iachini, A., Moore, H., Capp, G., Astor, R.A., Pitner, R., & Benbenishty, R. (2017). School climate. In G. Noblit (Ed.). Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Education. New York: Oxford Press. DOI: 10.1093/acrefore/9780190264093.013.89**

Pitner, R., Moore, H., Capp, G., Iachini, A., Berkowitz, R., Benbenishty, R., & Astor, R.A. (2017). School safety, victimization, and bullying: An overview of violence interventions and monitoring approaches. In C. Franklin (Ed.) Encyclopedia of Social Work Online (ESWO). New York: Oxford University Press. DOI: 10.1093/acrefore/9780199975839.013.1194**

Iachini, A., Berkowitz, R., Moore, H., Pitner, R., Astor, R.A., & Benbenishty, R. (2017). School Climate. In C. Franklin (Ed.) Encyclopedia of Social Work Online (ESWO). New York: Oxford University Press. DOI: 10.1093/acrefore/9780199975839.013.1195**

Pitner, R., & Sakamoto, I. (2016). Cultural competence and critical consciousness in social work pedagogy. In C. Franklin (Ed.) Encyclopedia of Social Work Online (ESWO). New York: Oxford University Press. DOI: 10.1093/acrefore/9780199975839.013.888.

Iachini, A., Pitner, R., Morgan, F., & Rhodes, K. (2016). Exploring the principal perspective: Implications for expanded school improvement and school mental health. Children & Schools, 38(1), 40-48.

Smallwood, S., Freedman, D.A., Pitner, R., Sharpe, P., Cole, J., Hastie, S., Hunter, B. (2015). Implementing a Community Empowerment Center to build capacity for developing, implementing, and sustaining interventions to promote community health. Journal of Community Health, 6, 1122-1129. **

Foster, K.A., Pitner, R., Freedman, D., Bell, B.A., & Shaw, T.C. (2015). Spatial dimensions of social capital. City & Community, 14 (4), 392-409.

Pitner, R., Marachi, R., Astor, R., & Benbenishty, R., (2015). Evidence-based violence prevention programs and best implementation practices. In K. Corcoran (Ed.) Social Workers’ Desk Reference (3rd ed, pp. 1050-1068). New York: Oxford Press.


Pitner, R., Astor, R., & Benbenishty, R. (2015). Violence in schools. In P. Allen-Meares (Ed.) Social work services in school (7th ed, pp. 265-296). Boston, Massachusetts: Pearson.



Contact Information
  • Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  
  • Phone: 803-777-6797
  • Office Room number: 304
Major Classes Taught
  • SOWK333 - Social Work with Diverse and Oppressed Populations
  • SOWK716 - Human Behavior in the Social Environment II
  • SOWK793 - Evaluation Research in Social Work
  • SOWK802 - Intellectual Foundations of Social Work and Social Welfare 3: Linking Theory to Research through Conceptual Models
My Links

#USCCOSW Latest Tweets

© 2017 University of South Carolina Board of Trustees | Privacy Policy