Published on May 24, 2024 by Kameron Brown  
female student working at computer

Samford University’s Orlean Beeson School of Education is expanding its reach and accessibility through a number of new undergraduate and graduate degree programs and certifications with Samford Online.

Samford Online helps students work at a pace that is right for their needs, while still providing the top quality in academic excellence for which Samford University is known. Students can expect an educational experience anchored in Christian understanding, world class faculty and a commitment to ensuring quality online content and delivery.

For many, higher education seems out of reach, impractical and even impossible, but Samford Online’s undergraduate and graduate degrees are tailor-made to reach students where they are and at any season of life.

Orlean Beeson School of Education is devoted to producing top quality graduates and professionals who make the world a better place in their community-focused and people-oriented professions. These new online offerings represent Samford’s unwavering commitment to provide leading academic programming and career preparedness in higher education and to foster positive change across the globe.

Samford Online’s Bachelor of Arts in Human Development and Family Science

Samford Online is now offering a Bachelor of Arts in Human Development and Family Science. The program focuses on interpersonal relationships, their connection to and their impact on human flourishing in families and communities. Skills are applied as students conduct family science research and complete internship hours in local community settings. This major prepares students for family-centered careers and provides an excellent foundation for graduate study in numerous areas.

“This course curriculum is designed to equip graduates with all the skills necessary to move into roles with significant human impact,” said Kristie Chandler, professor and chair of the human development and family science department. “Preparing students to work with and advocate for families and children in non-profit or ministry settings, government, business, education and other fields is vital to ensuring healthy and thriving communities.”

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Samford Online’s Master of Science in Organizational Leadership

Samford Online is now offering a Master of Science in Organizational Leadership. The program builds upon adult learning principles, culturally responsive leadership, purpose-oriented project management, organizational communication, and values-based performance appraisal, graduates will acquire the advanced knowledge, skills, and dispositions that characterize faith-informed leadership.

“Research indicates that our nation is experiencing a shortage of qualified, ethical, and moral leadership,” said Anna McEwan, dean of Orlean Beeson School of Education. “This program seeks to fill that shortage with the highest quality leaders and professionals.”

This program offers a direct pathway from Samford Online’s Bachelor of Arts in Organizational Leadership, to those interested in pursuing one of the university’s doctoral programs and is considered the perfect prerequisite for those interested in the School of Education’s Doctorate of Education.

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Samford Online’s New Certifications

For many, continuing studies through one of Samford Online’s programs or certifications is an excellent resource for building one’s portfolio and resume, or for distinguishing their degrees. As such, the following new certifications are tailer-made for those pursuing or polishing careers in the Human Development and Family Science fields.

  • Parenting in the 21st Century

Students can expect to unlock the keys to raising children who embody the virtues of compassion, integrity and resilience as parents learn to foster a nurturing home environment through this comprehensive certificate program. Specializing in character development, this program guides students through proven strategies and timeless wisdom from character development specialists. Delve into 30 hours of enriching educational content designed to empower you as a parent.

  • Caring for Children with Special Needs

Students will embark on a transformative journey of learning and empowerment with this comprehensive online certificate program in caring for children with special needs. This program equips parents, guardians, teachers or caregivers with invaluable insights and practical skills to positively impact the lives of those they care for. Learn effective communication strategies, behavior management techniques, practices for supporting daily living, skills for accessing support services, methods for promoting social inclusion and peer relationships and caregiver self-care practices in this 30-hour immersive educational experience.

  • Caring for Adolescents and Young Adults with Special Needs

This certificate offers 30 hours of educational content tailored for parents, caregivers, educators and advocates, designed to address this critical age group's unique challenges and opportunities. Explore topics such as transition planning, vocational skills development, fostering independence and promoting social and emotional well-being. Whether navigating the transition to adulthood with a family member or supporting individuals in educational or vocational settings, this program equips you with the knowledge and tools needed to make a meaningful difference in the lives of adolescents and young adults with diverse abilities.

With a variety of options for those interested in pursuing academic studies, Samford remains steadfast in creating a place where students’ passion meets purpose.

“Our faculty are devoted to providing a valuable education to all of Samford’s students,” said McEwan. “Whether this be in the classroom or through distance-learning opportunities, we will never stop pursuing our calling to educate, lead and serve.”

Samford is a leading Christian university offering undergraduate programs grounded in the liberal arts with an array of nationally recognized graduate and professional schools. Founded in 1841, Samford is the 87th-oldest institution of higher learning in the United States. Samford enrolls 5,791 students from 49 states, Puerto Rico and 16 countries in its 10 academic schools: arts, arts and sciences, business, divinity, education, health professions, law, nursing, pharmacy and public health. Samford fields 17 athletic teams that compete in the tradition-rich Southern Conference and ranks 6th nationally for its Graduation Success Rate among all NCAA Division I schools.