In this department, students will find many exciting learning opportunities—from courses taught by highly trained, articulate social work scholars and practitioners to field placement opportunities in various fields of practice here at home and around the world. 

Samford has gone beyond my expectations. I came into the program thinking it would be like my undergraduate program, but I found that the classes are small and the teachers are so focused on getting you the information you need in a way that challenges how you think.Melanye Morris, Master of Social Work ‘18, School of Public Health


Master of Social Work

Samford's Master of Social Work program is academically rigorous and emphasizes mastery of the core knowledge, values and skills of the social work profession, application of the person and environment construct and integration of research and practice. The degree program promotes interprofessional collaboration in order to address the complex and multifaceted nature of human needs and concerns.

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Fast-track Master of Social Work

Undergraduate students from select majors are eligible to participate in a fast-track option that allows students to graduate with a bachelor's degree in their selected major and a Master of Social Work after five years of study.

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Doctor of Public Health  (Dr.P.H.)

Samford's online Doctor of Public Health is designed for individuals who are called to serve as the next generation of leaders in our public health workforce. Through this doctoral program, students develop a broad understanding of public health through the integration of multiple disciplines and the ability to apply scientific findings to address complex problems of public health policy and practice.

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Joint Degrees

Master of Divinity or Master of Arts in Theological Studies/M.S.W

For students called to both preach the Gospel and engage in practical ministry, Samford offers two joint degrees programs with Beeson Divinity School and the School of Public Health's Master of Social Work. 

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Master of Public Health/M.S.W.

This joint degree program utilizes a faith-informed approach that combines knowledge and skills from the fields of social work and public health to promote the health and well-being of individuals and communities. 

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Field Placement

Social work is a practice-oriented profession and requires mastery of a vast array of helping skills that can only be developed through practical experience. As such, the field experience is part of the signature pedagogy of social work.

Master of Social Work students receive practical experience through an integrative field internship than spans multiple semesters. In conjunction with the program's field director, students are matched with a site that aligns with their personal interest to develop necessary skills as advanced social work practitioners. With more than 150 field sites available locally, nationally and internationally students are able pursue their passion while gaining professional experience.

Examples of field placement sites include:

  • Mental health treatment centers and clinics
  • Substance abuse treatment facilities
  • Long-term care facilities
  • Hospitals
  • Correctional facilities
  • Residential institutions
  • Child welfare organizations
  • Foster care and adoption agencies
  • Community development programs
  • Neighborhood revitalization organizations
  • Organizations for individuals with disabilities
  • Prevention organizations
  • Domestic violence organizations
  • Schools

Distance Field Placement FAQ
Field Handbook

Continuing Education

To see the department's full schedule of continuing education programs, go here