Preparing graduates for a life of service through proclaiming the gospel of Jesus Christ and advanced clinical practice
For students seeking an understanding of core theological disciplines while being trained as an advanced social work practitioner, Samford University is pleased to offer joint degree programs with Beeson Divinity School and the School of Public Health's Master of Social Work.
Joint Degrees Include
- Master of Divinity (MDiv) / Master of Social Work (MSW)
- Master of Arts in Theological Studies (MATS) / Master of Social Work (MSW)
Graduates from these programs are well-equipped to undertake multifaceted work. For example, individuals who discern a vocational call to international missions may be tasked with both traditional ministry work as well as developing and overseeing programs that address issues such as human trafficking or HIV/AIDs prevention.
Requirements for the Master of Social Work program are constant for both joint degree programs, while requirements differ for the Master of Divinity and Master of Arts in Theological Studies. Both require course work in biblical studies, historical and theological studies, and spiritual formation. However, the Master of Divinity requires additional courses in biblical languages, including Greek and Hebrew, and in the theory and practice of Christian ministry.
In short, the Master of Arts in Theological Studies degree is designed to provide a basic understanding of core theological disciplines, while the Master of Divinity is designed to prepare God-called persons to serve in pastoral ministry capacities.
Students must apply for admission to each program separately. Admission to one program does not guarantee admission to the other.
For either the Master of Divinity or Master of Arts in Theological Studies program, you must first apply for admission to Beeson Divinity School.
You must complete an internal application in order to avoid duplications of fees, etc.
For admission requirements, please visit the website for the individual programs.
Plans of Study
MDiv / MSW (Five Years)
For this joint degree program, Beeson Divinity School will grant 12 semester hours of elective credit for social work program courses and the social work program will grant six hours of elective credit for divinity courses. This effectively reduces the total number of hours for the two degrees by 18.
In addition to the ability to count core courses from one program for elective credit in the other, students in the MDiv/MSW program are also eligible to complete internships for both programs simultaneously in a church or ministry setting. Although this option does not further lower the credit requirement for either program, it does allow students to save time by completing two internship requirements simultaneously. Internship sites must be approved by both programs and internship activities must meet the internal and accreditation requirements of each program.
MATS / MSW (Four Years)
For this program, Beeson Divinity School will grant six semester hours of elective credit for social work program courses, and the social work program will grant six semester hours of elective credits for divinity courses. This effectively reduces the total number of hours for the two degrees by 12.