Csikai, Ellen L., PhD

Professor and Editor of The Journal of Social Work in End-of-Life and Palliative Care
Contact Information Areas of Interest and Expertise
  • Bioethics
  • End of Life Care and Palliative Care
  • Gerontology
  • Health Care
  • International/Global Health

Download Dr. Csikai's CV (pdf)


  • BSW, University of Pittsburgh
  • MSW, University of Pittsburgh
  • MPH, University of Pittsburgh
  • PhD, University of Pittsburgh


Dr. Ellen Csikai is founding and continuing editor of The Journal of Social Work in End-of-Life and Palliative Care, published by Taylor and Francis. The journal presents research and original articles that explore issues crucial to individuals with serious, life-threatening and life-limiting illnesses and their families, including interdisciplinary interventions, practice innovations, practice evaluations, end-of-life decision-making, grief and bereavement, and ethical and moral issues across the lifespan. Dr. Csikai’s research primarily addresses cultural similarities and differences in health care approaches, communication and treatment decisions among older oncology patients, family members, and health care professionals in the U.S. and internationally with Cuban and Hungarian colleagues.  She also offers a study abroad opportunity that examines social services in Mexico. At UA, she is part of the Alabama Research Institute on Aging as a faculty associate and Executive Committee Member and a faculty affiliate of the Latin American, Caribbean, and Latinx Studies Program.


  • Donna J. Reese and Ellen Csikai. (2018). Social Work Assessment and Outcomes Measurement in Hospice and Palliative Care. American Journal of Hospice and Palliative Medicine, 35(12), 1553-1564.
  • Glajchen, M., Berkman, C., Otis-Green, S., Stein, G. L., Sedjwick, T., Bern-Klug, M., Christ, G, Csikai, E.L., Downes, D. Gerbino, S., Head, B., Parker Oliver, D., Waldrop, D., Portenoy, R. (2018). Defining Core Competencies for Generalist-Level Palliative Social Work. Journal of Pain and Symptom Management, 56(6) 886-892.
  • Black, K. & Csikai, E.L. (2015). Dying in an age of choice. Journal of Social Work in End-of-Life and Palliative Care, 11(1), 27-49.
  • Reese, D. & Csikai, E.L. (2015). Measuring Social Work Outcomes with the Social Work Assessment Tool (SWAT). National Association of Social Workers: Health Section Newsletter, Spring.
  • Allen, R. S., Azuero, C.B., Csikai, E.L., Parmelee, P.A., Shin, H.J., Kvale, E., Durkin, D.W., & Burgio, L.D. (2015). “It was very rewarding for me …”: Senior volunteers’ experiences with implementing a reminiscence and creative activity intervention. The Gerontologist. (published online first February 2015).
  • Weisenfluh, S.M., & Csikai, E.L. (2013). Professional and Educational Needs of Hospice and Palliative Care Social Workers. Journal of Social Work in End-of-Life & Palliative Care, 9, 58-73.
  • Csikai, E.L., & Weisenfluh, S. (2012). Hospice and palliative social workers’ engagement in life review interventions. American Journal of Hospice and Palliative Care,  DOI: 10.49909112449067.
  • Csikai, E. (2011). Developing the science of end-of-life and palliative care research: National Institute of Nursing Research Summit. Journal of Social Work in End-of-Life Care, 7, 291-299.
  • Arriaza, P., Martin, S., & Csikai, E. (2011). An assessment of hospice bereavement programs for Hispanics. Journal of Social Work in End-of-Life & Palliative Care, 7, 121-138.
  • Csikai, E. L., Whalen, M., Otto, J., & Durkin, D. (2011). Adult protection services workers’ experiences with serious illness and death.  Journal of Elder Abuse & Neglect, 23(2), 1-21.
  • Csikai, E., & Martin, S. (2010). Bereaved hospice caregivers’ views of the transition to hospice. Social Work in Health Care, 49, 387-400.
  • Dégi, C., Balog, P., Kopp, M., Kallay, E., Thayer, J. F., & Csikai, E. L. (2010). Depressive symptoms, negative life events and incidence of lifetime treatment of cancer in the Hungarian population. Journal of Cognitive and Behavioral Sciences, 10(1), 39-57.
  • Csikai, E.L., & Black, K. (2009). Advance care planning in the delivery of adult protective services. Journal of Social Work Research, 35, 311-321.
  • Csikai, E.L. (2009). Book Review: For one more day by Mitch Albom. Journal of Social Work in End-of-Life and Palliative Care, 4(3), 252-254.
  • Csikai, E. (2009). Care for the dying through hospice and palliative care. In I. Semsei (Ed.), Social Gerontology in Hungary, (pp. 472-481). University of Debrecen: Debrecen, Hungary.
  • Csikai, E.L. (2009). Communication related to end-of-life care and decisions (pp. 169-188).  In J. L. Werth & D. Blevins (Eds.), Decision-making near the end of life: Issues, developments and future directions.  NY: Routledge Press.
  • Csikai, E.L. (2009). Opportunities for international social work: A Fulbright experience. Journal of Social Work in End-of-Life and Palliative Care, 4(3), 173-188.
  • Csikai, E.L., & Durkin, D. (2009). Perceived educational needs and preparation of adult protective services workers for practice with end-of-life issues. Gerontology and Geriatrics Education, 30(2), 146-163.
  • Csikai, E. (2008). End-of-life decisions. In T. Mizrahi & L. E. Davis (Eds.), Encyclopedia of Social Work (20th ed., pp. 126-132). Washington, DC: NASW Press/Oxford University Press.
  • Csikai, E., Herrin, C., Tang, M., & Church, W. T. (2008). Serious illness, injury, and death in child protection and preparation for end-of-life situations among child welfare services workers.  Child Welfare, 87(6), 49-70.
  • Csikai, E. L., & Jones, B. (2007). Teaching resources for end-of-life and palliative care. Chicago: Lyceum Books, Inc.
  • Csikai, E. L. (2006).  Bereaved hospice caregivers’ perceptions of the end-of-life care communication process and the involvement of health care professionals.  Journal of Palliative Medicine, 9(6), 1300-1309.


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