May 25, 2024  
2023-2024 Academic Bulletin 
2023-2024 Academic Bulletin [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Divinity/Social Work Dual Degree MDiv/MSW

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Andrews University has formed a collaboration between the Seventh-day Adventist Theological Seminary and the Department of Social Work in the College of Arts & Sciences to prepare students for service in occupations where social work and the pastoral mission of the church intersect. 

The objectives of this program are to prepare students for various forms of ministry in which clinical and administrative skills in social work and theology are needed; to enable students to integrate both theological and social work knowledge, values and skills into a multifaceted approach to Christian service, thereby enhancing their usefulness as instruments of the Holy Spirit; and to sensitize students to nontraditional ministry opportunities by exposing them to theories and practice skills related to counseling approaches, person-in-environment, social and economic justice, human rights and global perspectives from a Christian worldview. The program is designed to give students an integrated approach to both theology and social work. Students can choose either a dual degree or an emphasis in either Social Work or Christian Ministry.

Since both the MSW and MDiv programs share certain cognate courses to achieve a more streamlined and efficient program, both degrees must be conferred simultaneously in order to fulfill the requirements of either degree. In the event that one degree was completed prior to enrollment for the dual degree program, the cognate requirements for the other degree will be adjusted as shown below. A dual student cannot march in graduation or march-without-completion if both halves of the dual degree are not completed.

Total Credits - 111

MDiv: Graduation requirements consist of the satisfactory completion of 111 semester credits with an overall grade point average of 2.75 or better. 65 credits are MDiv credits, and 46 credits are social work credits. 

11.5 credits of MSW core courses replace 9 credits of equivalent MDiv core courses. In addition the 6 credits of electives for each program are merged.

MSW: MDiv students are required to complete 46 core credit hours of the two-year regular MSW program. Due to the strict requirements of the Council on Social Work Education’s accrediting mandates, these core courses must all be taught or co-taught within the department by faculty holding an MSW degree. However, these courses could be co-taught with faculty from the seminary. Occasionally, a student who has already earned a BSW from an accredited program may apply to this program. In this case, the student would be placed in the Advanced Standing program, and take either 33 credits (Advanced Standing) or 39 credits (Advanced Standing Plus). Students with an undergraduate GPA of 3.0 or higher are eligible to complete the Advanced Standing Program while those with a lower GPA must complete the Advanced Standing Plus requirements.

Program Information

Information for the two programs (Divinity MDiv and Social Work MSW) follows:

Click here to jump to Social Work MSW.

Divinity MDiv


The Master of Divinity (MDiv) is a 78-credit professional program recommended as the graduate training for Adventist ministry by the General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists and the North American Division. It requires, at minimum, two years of full-time study (including summers) for full-time students. Additional semesters may be required for students lacking prerequisites (including biblical languages), or for those who take less than 14 credits in the Fall and Spring semesters, and 12 during the summer.

Concentration Options

Students may - if desired - complete a concentration:

  • Chaplaincy
  • Marriage and Family Life Ministry
  • Urban Ministry
  • Youth and Young Adult Ministry

MDiv Dual Degree Options

The MDiv is also available with the following dual degree options:


In harmony with the mission and core values of the Seventh-day Adventist Theological Seminary, the Master of Divinity degree equips called, committed men and women with practical biblical, theological, and ministerial knowledge and skills to prepare them for Christlike service as leaders and equippers.


We envision the Master of Divinity community as a relationally healthy and diverse family focused on developing balanced and spiritually mature ministry leaders who are committed to equipping people in accomplishing God’s mission and the prophetic calling of the Seventh-day Adventist Church.


Students who enter the Master of Divinity program who have not previously taken a Religion or Theology degree at the undergraduate level must fulfill the following prerequisites, all of which may be taken either at the Seventh-day Adventist Theological Seminary or at the undergraduate level. Each student’s transcript will be evaluated to ensure the completion of all required preprequisite courses.

Current Greek and Biblical Hebrew language intermediate level proficiency must be accomplished through placement exam or by passing both the beginning and intermediate levels of each language.

  • At least 3 credits of combined Christian Church History taken at the undergraduate level will satisfy this prerequisite. Otherwise, students will take CHIS 506 and CHIS 507 as needed.
  • 2 credits of   Credits: 2,3
  • 2 credits of   Credits: 2,3
  • At least 3 credits of combined Adventist history and Life & Writings of Ellen G. White.

  • 1.5 credits of   Credits: 1.5,2
  • 1.5 credits of   Credits: 1.5,2
  • Credits: 2
  • Credits: 2
  • OR

  • Credits: 2,3
  • The Revelation requirement is a prerequisite and may be met in the following ways:

    1. An undergraduate Revelation course taken within the last 10 years at an institution whose syllabus has been approved by the Seminary will not be required to meet the Revelation requirement in the Seminary. Students may submit a syllabus for evaluation if their undergraduate school is not on the list of approved schools. If approved, their school will be added to the list, and their requirement will be waived.
    2. Students who have not taken an undergraduate Revelation course, or whose undergraduate courses do not qualify, must take one of the following courses:
      • NTST530 Intro to Revelation
      • NTST539 Studies in Revelation (online)
    3. If a student’s undergraduate course is more than 10 years old or if their undergraduate syllabus is denied by the NTST department, they may take NTST 648 Revelation to fulfill their Revelation prerequisite. By so doing, they fulfill the Revelation prerequisite as well as the core New Testament exegesis requirement.
  • 2 credits of   Credits: 0,2 (Passed at C- or higher or score 45% or higher on the Greek Placement Exam - May, August)
  • 3 credits of   Credits: 0,3 (Passed at C or higher or score 60% or higher on the Greek Placement Exam - May, August)
  • NOTE: Any student who wishes to take a biblical language placement exam must take at least one of the exams in May or August of the year they enroll in seminary. If the student wishes to take the exam for the second language it must be taken before the start of their second year in seminary.

  • 2 credits of   Credits: 2,3
  • 3 credits of   Credits: 0,3 (Passed at a minimum of C+ or score 75% or higher on the Beginner Hebrew Placement Exam - May, August)
  • 2 credits of   Credits: 0,2,3 (Passed at a minimum of C+ or score 75% or higher on the Intermediate Hebrew Placement Exam - May, August)
  • NOTE: Any student who wishes to take a Biblical language placement exam must take at least one of the exams in May or August of the year they enroll in seminary. If the student wishes to take the exam for the second language it must be taken before the start of their second year in seminary.

  • 2 credits of   Credits: 2,3
  • 2 credits of   Credits: 2
  • 2 credits of   Credits: 2,3
  • 2 credits of   Credits: 2
  • NOTE: Students who have passed a basic course in pastoral ministry from an accredited Seventh-day Adventist undergraduate institution, or who have been Conference-employed as pastors for two years or more will be exempted from PATH 552, provided their hiring/sponsoring organization can provide proof of at least two years of pastoral employment via their service record. Exemptions to this rule will be granted on a case by case basis as determined by the Christian Ministry Chairperson.

  • 3 credits of   Credits: 2,3
  • 3 credits of   Credits: 2,3

Total Credits - 78

Interdisciplinary - 2

Great Controversy, Covenant, Law, and Sabbath - 2-3

Church History - 7

Discipleship and Lifespan Education - 9

New Testament - 8

Old Testament - 8

Practical and Applied Theology - 19

Theology - 13

General Electives - 6

  • Students will take 6 credits of general electives.
  • Electives may not be used to satisfy prerequisites and/or deficiencies. 
  • Up to 6 credits in relevant courses offered by other schools of the university on the graduate level may be included in the general electives, including up to 4 appropriate workshop credits. 
  • Transfer credit petitions from other schools/colleges within Andrews University or from any other University must be done in consultation with the MDiv Office.

Thesis Option

Students anticipating academic doctoral studies after the completion of their MDiv program are advised to undertake the thesis option as some academic institutions require a master’s-level thesis for entry into doctoral programs. 

The thesis counts as 6 general elective credits allowed for the MDiv degree. Students should register for 2 or more thesis credits per term for at least two semesters. Therefore, initial registration for a thesis must be no later than two semesters prior to graduation. Students electing to write an MDiv thesis must apply to the director of the program and must (1) demonstrate superior scholarship over a minimum of two consecutive semesters, normally with a GPA of 3.50 or above; (2) take Research Methods before the thesis is started; and (3) submit a paper of superior quality before permission is granted by the director to begin writing the thesis. The student is guided in thesis preparation by a three-member committee appointed by the director in consultation with the student and department chair in which the subject of the thesis is chosen. The chair of this committee serves as the thesis advisor.

The format of the thesis must conform strictly to the Andrews University Standards for Written Work. Students are strongly urged to consult the dissertation secretary before formatting and printing a thesis.

At least six weeks before graduation, the committee-approved draft of the thesis should be submitted to the dissertation secretary. After appropriate changes have been made, the corrected copy should be submitted at least four weeks before graduation to the dissertation secretary for approval. Copying on non-acid paper should be completed at least two weeks before graduation. Three copies of the thesis, including a 150-word abstract and an approval sheet, must be submitted to the dissertation secretary. The abstract should contain a short statement of the problem examined, a brief exposition of methods and procedures, and a condensed summary of the findings.

Students obtain a Thesis Completion Form from the dissertation secretary. They must take the form to the Academic Records Office no later than noon on Friday, a week preceding graduation. A fee is charged by the university for binding the three copies of the thesis, two of which are deposited in the library and one in the department in which the student earns the degree.

Students who do not adhere strictly to the deadlines noted above will have their graduation postponed. Thesis candidates must pass an oral examination no later than two weeks before graduation. The candidate is expected to demonstrate mastery of the thesis topic.


Note: Dual degree students who choose to complete a concentration will increase their total credits required by 12.

Chaplaincy Concentration - 12

Chaplaincy is a highly qualified and dynamic expression of ministry based on the Bible and supported by the Seventh-day Adventist Church. The chaplaincy concentration provides the basic training and preparation for service beyond the church borders in various chaplaincy ministries, such as in healthcare, military, campus, prison, police and fire departments, community, and corporate settings. It also prepares pastors and church leaders to advance in their caregiving and empathic ministry skills for an immediate impact in the church and the surrounding communities.

Marriage and Family Life Ministry Concentration - 12

Healthy, spirit-filled marriages and families are the backbone of Christian life and most clearly reflect the character of Christ in our churches and in the world. When marriages and families are broken, our churches suffer. The Concentration on Marriage and Family Life Ministry is designed to prepare MDiv students to equip their churches to be vibrant and healthy in the way they foster relationships in their individual families as well as in church and the community. Students who take this concentration will be better equipped to educate their congregations in areas of family life. They will also be better prepared to address the family issues that will come to them for counseling. Pastors with these courses will be able to create healthy churches and more positively impact their communities for Christ.

In addition to the core MDiv requirement DSLE 503 - Marriage, Family, and Interpersonal Relationships  for 2 credits, students who choose this concentration will take 12 credits in the following courses:

Urban Ministry Concentration - 18

The Urban Ministry concentration is designed for students who want to learn how to make a decisive impact in the cities and to be prepared for the specific challenges of mission and ministry in the urban context.

Online Delivery: The Urban Ministry concentration is available online with some interactive online courses offered synchronously (via Zoom), and some interactive online courses are offered asynchronously (see School of Distance Education  definitions). Due to grant funding, this online delivery is limited only to select students with special permission.

MDiv Core Requirements - Contextualized to the Urban Ministry Concentration

It is suggested that the student take the following topics or contexts to fulfill the core requirements in the main body of the MDiv Program.

Youth and Young Adult Ministry Concentration - 12

A Youth and Young Adult Ministry (YYAM) Concentration is available for students wishing to gain specialized skills and knowledge for service in pastoral and administrative leadership to address the needs of youth and young adults. The MDiv with the YYAM Concentration requires a total of 84 credits.

In addition to the core MDiv requirement DSLE 534 - Ministry to Youth and Young Adults  for 2 credits, students who choose this concentration will take 12 credits in the following courses:

Students who choose this concentration must select 2 credits of PATH 632  Contextualized Preaching: Youth in fulfillment of the Christian Ministry requirement for an Advanced Preaching Core Elective (CHMN list).

Additional Requirements

MDiv students must meet the following requirements in addition to those required of all graduate students:

  • Complete the MDiv curriculum of at least 78 credits. Students lacking adequate undergraduate preparation will be required to complete additional prerequisite credits. The actual number of credits required is based on individual academic evaluation.
  • MDiv students taking 9 credits or more are required to attend at least 1 colloquium per semester during their stay at Andrews.
  • Maintain a GPA of 2.75 or above.
  • Meet the qualitative standards of the MDiv program.
  • No U (Unsatisfactory) grade or any grade below C- will count towards the MDiv degree.

Academic Probation

MDiv students whose cumulative GPA falls below 2.75 will be placed on academic probation and will have their course load reduced to no more than 10 semester credits. MDiv students whose cumulative GPA remains below 2.75 for a second consecutive semester will be required to meet with the MDiv program director and will enter into a probation contract, have regular meetings with their academic advisor, and fulfill other requirements as needed. Following that, should their GPA not improve, they may be asked to withdraw from the program. 

When an incomplete or Deferred Grade has not been cleared by the end of the following semester, the student’s course load must be reduced as follows:

  • One Incomplete/DGs—no reduction
  • Two Incompletes/DGs—may register for no more than 10 credits
  • Three Incompletes/DGs—may register for no more than 9 credits

With more than three I/DGs, the student must cease taking classes until the Incompletes/DGs are cleared. 

Evaluation of Students

Since the MDiv program prepares individuals for professional and pastoral leadership, periodic assessments are made of the students by the faculty in areas other than academic standing. Areas reviewed are students’ spiritual growth, lifestyle reflective of the beliefs and practices of the Seventh-day Adventist Church, social/family relations, and developing potential for ministry. As a result of these assessments, students are affirmed in the MDiv program, advised of needed adjustments, or discontinued from the program.

Readiness for Ministry

The MDiv program is dedicated to preparing every graduate for success in ministry. Godly and effective practice of ministry requires not only intellectual readiness, but also spiritual, physical, emotional, and social maturity. The MDiv Readiness for Ministry process helps seminarians evaluate their ministerial gifting and calling, discover and address strengths and weaknesses, and identify and pursue avenues of ministry appropriate to their giftedness. The program includes small-group mentoring as well as periodic assessments of the seminarian’s readiness for ministry, by the faculty, staff, and ministry supervisors.

Areas to be reviewed include spiritual commitment, character, social and relational skills, and general aptitude for ministry. On the basis of these assessments, the seminarian and his/her mentor will, at a minimum, receive feedback in the middle of their first year, and again shortly before graduation. If a significant issue arises that, at the discretion of the Seminary, seriously impairs the seminarian’s potential for ministry, appropriate action will be taken. This may include: referring the seminarian to the program director for guidance, remediation, and/or other appropriate action, counsel regarding alternate programs of ministry within the University or elsewhere, or dismissing the seminarian from the MDiv program. As part of the admissions process, every MDiv applicant is required to sign an agreement to participate in this process. This agreement includes permission, which seminarians can withdraw later in the program, to share the final readiness for ministry profile available with prospective employers.

Maintaining Active Status

Residency Requirements: Students must maintain active status by enrolling for at least two semesters within one academic year. When this fails to happen, the student must follow the bulletin in force at the time active status is reestablished.

Following an absence of two years or more, a student’s previous admission status will have lapsed and the student will need to reapply to the program.

Additional Information

Hybrid Course Delivery Options

MDiv students may take up to one-half of their degree credits off-campus. The Hybrid delivery method utilizes various delivery methods to assist students in completing their MDiv degree. These options include:

  • Interactive online asynchronous classes through the Seminary Online Learning Center (SOLC) (see School of Distance Education  definitions).
  • One week intensives at seminary extension sites in Unions throughout the United States and Canada (offered by the MA Pastoral Ministry English track). Certain classes in the MAPM program cannot be used by MDiv students. Advising is necessary prior to registration.
  • Summer Session intensive courses on the main Andrews University campus
  • Full semester, on-campus courses

For financial information regarding hybrid studies, please click here .

Students interested in the Hybrid delivery method must obtain approval and instructions on specific class options, costs and how to sign up for this option from the MDiv program office before beginning off-campus studies.

Transferred and Earned Credit Term Limits

All course credits applied towards degree requirements should be earned within 10 years of the awarding of the degree.

Transferring Credits to the MDiv Program

Provided the content of the courses is assessed as comparable to the curriculum of the Andrews University Master of Divinity program, students intending to transfer credits into the Master of Divinity Program should be aware of the following policies:

  • Transfer requests must be made by the student within the first two semesters of the student’s MDiv studies.
  • Transfer credits are granted only for courses in which the grade is B or higher.
  • For each course being requested in transfer, a course syllabus must be obtained and presented to the MDiv Program office, preferably in electronic format, and in English.
  • An official transcript from the school being transferred from must have been sent to Andrews University, and be in the student’s record.
  • A student may transfer a maximum of 39 credits (graduate level) from an uncompleted graduate-level program.
  • Up to 24 credits (graduate level) may be transferred to the Master of Divinity program from a completed master’s-level degree.
  • At least 39 credits must be taken in residence.

MDiv Core Course Replacement Policy

MDiv core courses provide graduate level understanding considered by the seminary and the church to be essential for the pastor. Occasionally, an MDiv student may have already taken as part of their undergraduate degree, in addition to the required prerequisites for the MDiv program, an advanced college course in which they mastered the learning outcomes for the course at a graduate level. In such cases, a proposal to take an alternate course within the same discipline (department), at an equivalent or higher level, may be considered. To request the validation of a course, the student must submit to the MDiv office, within their first semester, a portfolio containing the following items:

  • The Seminary Prior Learning Validation Form, initiated and signed by the student.
    • The course syllabus from the advanced-level undergraduate course evidencing that all the Course Learning Outcomes (CLOs) of the MDiv core course have been taught appropriately at a level of rigor equivalent to the MDiv graduate course;
  • A transcript demonstrating that the student earned a B grade or higher in the undergraduate advanced-level course;
  • An essay, normally to be followed by an interview by the department chair/faculty member responsible for the course, describing how each of the CLOs were taught, learned, and subsequently put into use at a graduate level of learning.

MAPM to MDiv Completion

For the transfer of credits between the MAPM and the MDiv programs at Andrews University, the following stipulations will be in place:

  • MAPM students will be allowed to transfer qualified courses of up to two-thirds of the MDiv’s total amount of credits.
  • Students requesting admission to the MDiv program must submit a complete graduate application including standard requirements such as statement of purpose, minimum GPA and recommendations.
  • Courses with a passing grade of C- or higher will be accepted to transfer between the programs.

The Florida Conference site will serve Hispanic pastors who already have an MAPM and who would like to continue with their MDiv studies. Selected courses will be offered as intensives in Florida each Fall and Spring semester and on the main campus during the summers. This will allow those who have the MAPM to advance to the MDiv and later on to Doctoral studies if so desired.

Summer Course Load

The 12-week summer semester is divided into three 4-week sessions. The total amount of coursework during the summer session may not exceed 12 credits. Students taking a biblical language during a summer session may not take other courses during that session.

Workshop Credit Limit and Grading Pattern

Master of Divinity students may apply up to 4 workshop credits appropriate to degree requirements. If workshops are taken during the semester breaks, the credits are counted as part of the class load for either the previous or the following semester.

Workshops are graded S/U. Any deviation from this pattern must be approved by the dean prior to the conclusion of the workshop. Students must register at the Academic Records Office for all workshops for which academic credit is desired.

Independent Study Restrictions

Students in the MDiv program are allowed to register for Independent Study only for a compelling reason such as a schedule conflict or the need to take a subject that is not offered in any given semester (for a maximum of 8 credits during their MDiv program). Independent study is only available to students on the main campus. Normally, Independent Study cannot be used to meet a core requirement. Students must first seek approval from the MDiv office before arranging with a teacher to do Independent Study.


For a detailed list of charges, please click here .

MDiv students taking a graduate course in the College of Arts & Sciences in fulfillment of an elective course requirement may request a 50% tuition reduction (up to 9 credits cumulative), provided the class is not full and there are a sufficient number of students paying full tuition to warrant the teaching of the course. Directed study, laboratory courses, and study tours are not eligible for reduced tuition. Neither is this discount available for dual enrollment students who have been accepted in a graduate degree program in the College of Arts & Sciences. (Application form is available in the MDiv office.)


The Seminary follows the University graduation procedures and requirements for the conferral of degrees. A dedication ceremony for graduating seminary students is held on the Sabbath afternoon of graduation weekend, or as announced.

Admission Requirements

All MDiv applicants must meet the Graduate Programs Admission Requirements applicable to all graduate students and the general seminary requirements.

  • Hold a baccalaureate degree: A four-year degree from an accredited United States institution, or its equivalent from an institution outside the U.S.
  • Minimum of 2.5 Undergraduate GPA.
  • Normally hold membership in the Seventh-day Adventist Church given that the MDiv program is specifically designed for Adventist ministers and is sponsored and financed by the Adventist church.
  • Represent high moral integrity with a character, lifestyle, and spiritual commitment reflective of the beliefs and practices of the Seventh-day Adventist Church and show promise of usefulness for Adventist ministry through personal maturity and adequate experience in the Church. Maintain a modest pastoral social media presence - one that projects a professional demeanor and Christian values. Click here to see the Seminary Code of Conduct.
  • Persons of other faiths who are willing to live in harmony with these standards are welcome to apply.
  • Submit an autobiographical history and a 350+ word statement of purpose reflecting the applicant’s family and spiritual development, sense of calling to ministry, experience in church work, years as a baptized Adventist member, if ordained or commissioned as a pastor, including date, and future goals in relation to the MDiv program.
  • If married, the spouse of the applicant is also asked to complete a statement in regard to his or her feelings and relationship to the partner’s aspirations for future ministry.
  • Criminal Background Check. Because seminary students will, during and/or after their studies, be working in positions of trust, applicants who have lived in North America (US or CN) for 6 months or more are required to complete a Criminal Background Check before being accepted to the seminary. This is a regular requirement for many areas of leadership and is required by the North American Division for all volunteers and employees who work with children.

    Andrews University has selected the same company used by the North American Division - Sterling Volunteers (SV) - to administer your background check. There is a standard fee charged by Sterling Volunteers for this service. Please click here to complete this step. (If you have previously completed a background check with Sterling Volunteers please e-mail your status report to

    With Sterling Volunteers, you can rest assured that your information is safe. All data is encrypted and stored in a completely secure environment. If you have any questions or concerns about Sterling Volunteers’ security measures or payments, feel free to contact them at or 855-326-1860, Option 1.

  • An interview with a representative of the MDiv program may be required, either by personal contact, telephone, or video.
  • Applicants to all Seminary programs are required to complete and submit to the Seminary the “Pre-Admission Conduct Disclosure Statement.”
  • Recommendations:
    • Pastor or Church board from the church where the applicant is a member.
    • Conference administrator, chair or primary professor of undergraduate department, or church elder.
    • General Recommendation from: College teacher or advisor, recent employer, or other non-family members.
    • Given that applying and obtaining pertinent documents for admission can be a long process, the student must start the application process at least 4-6 months before the desired starting semester. See University deadlines for individual semesters here.​​​​​​​

Policy for Applicants to the MDiv Program who hold degrees from Unaccredited Schools or Lack Baccalaureate Degrees

Purpose of this policy/protocol: To streamline the admission process and to create standardized admission requirements for students that hold degrees from unaccredited schools or lack baccalaureate degrees. As per 2020 ATS guidelines, and as part of the SDATS application process, the following procedure will be followed:

Unaccredited Schools

Applicants who hold degrees from unaccredited schools will submit the following:

  1. A 12 to 15-page research paper on a biblical/theological or ministerial topic that demonstrates solid academic-level research and writing skills.
  2. A resume documenting ministry/pastoral leadership and work experience.
  3. A statement of purpose including their call to pastoral ministry showing authentic biblical spirituality.
  4. 3 recommendations
  5. Official transcripts showing the completion of an undergraduate (baccalaureate) degree with a minimum 2.5 GPA.
  6. A petition letter from a church administrator (usually conference president or ministerial director) requesting/endorsing the applicant’s admission to the program.
  7. Interview: Applicants will be interviewed by the program director or one of the Deans. The interview will address key elements of the applicant’s life, including his or her philosophy of ministry, life experience, goals, distinctive doctrines and theology.

​​​​​​​Lack of Baccalaureate Degree

For applicants who lack baccalaureate degrees, in addition to all requirements above, they must also:

  1. Submit official transcripts showing the completion of a minimum of 60 undergraduate (semester) credits or an associate degree with a minimum 2.5 GPA.
  2. Take all necessary MDiv prerequisites
  3. Be at least 35 years of age.  

Students requesting admission under these exceptions must submit a complete graduate application prior to being considered for admission.

Students who meet the above requirements will be processed by the program’s office, taking to the Masters Admissions Committee only those cases that fall outside of this policy/protocol.

Placement Examinations

Biblical Hebrew and Biblical Greek Prerequisites

Hebrew and Greek are required at the Intermediate proficiency level. Language Proficiency must be demonstrated within the first two years in seminary. Undergraduate credits alone do not demonstrate current proficiency in a language.

Option 1: Language Courses

  • Students may demonstrate proficiency in Biblical Hebrew by passing Hebrew I (OTST 551) and earning a grade of at least C+ in Hebrew II (OTST 552).
  • Students may demonstrate proficiency in Greek by passing Beginning Greek and earning a grade of at least C in intermediate Greek (NTST 552).

Option 2: Placement Exam

Students also have the option of demonstrating proficiency in a biblical language by passing the corresponding placement exam. Placement exams may be taken only once for each language. Any student who wishes to take a placement exam must take at least one of them in May or August of the year they enroll in seminary. If the student wishes to take the exam for the second language it must be taken by September of their second year in seminary. Placement exams must be taken at the regular May or August dates set by the seminary.

Preparation materials designed to help students prepare for the placement examinations are available from the Old Testament ( and New Testament ( departments.

Based on the score achieved on the exam, the student will be assigned to do one of the following as soon as possible: (1) Take both the beginning and intermediate language courses, (2) take the Intermediate language course, or (3) enroll in exegesis and theology courses without further language study necessary.

Students who do not pass the exam and do not obtain the required grade in the course must retake the course without delay until the required grade is achieved.

International Student Information

English Language Requirements

All students whose first language is not English must demonstrate adequate proficiency in English to succeed in the academic setting. Language proficiency requirements must be met before enrolling full-time in regular coursework. 

Following are the English proficiency tests approved by the University and the required passing scores:

  • TOEFL Paper-based - 565
  • TOEFL Internet-based - 85
  • Duolingo - 110
  • IELTS - 6.5
  • PTE - 58

Advanced Standing

In accordance with ATS Standard 3.13, the Seminary may approve incoming MDiv students from outside North America to receive advanced standing. Advanced standing is credit given for advanced/upper division courses taken at the undergraduate level. In order to qualify for advanced standing, students must:

  • Hold a 4-year Bachelor of Theology (BTh) degree or its equivalent from an accredited institution.
  • Have graduated from an AAA-accredited institution outside of North America.

Criteria for Validation of Courses

Up to 18 credits of advanced standing may be granted. Each course to be considered for application toward advanced standing must:

  • Have been taken within 10 years of the projected graduation date;
  • Be an upper-division/advanced level course that:
    • Contributes to the MDiv program learning outcomes;
    • Have an earned grade equivalent of “B” or higher.

Curricular Practical Training (CPT) - required for students on an F-1 visa taking off-campus practicums. 

To qualify for CPT, the following requirements must be met: 

  • The specified training must have a clear start and end date. 

  • The F-1 student must have been enrolled for a full academic year before starting CPT (an exception is given for graduate programs requiring training in the first year of study). 

  • The F-1 student must be registered for a full course of study during CPT (if the CPT is in Fall or Spring semester) and the specified training should be reflected in the course load.  

Student Learning Outcomes

A graduate from this program:

  • Models spiritual humility, maturity and integrity grounded in a living experience with God in joyful assurance of His salvation, nurtured by the sanctifying presence and power of the Holy Spirit. (Character)
  • Manifests the practices of a Biblical scholar-theologian engaging the Bible, Christian/Adventist heritage and professional resources with theological maturity for personal growth and for facilitating the theological competence of others. (Scholarship)
  • Demonstrates personal commitment, passion and essential skills for discipleship and evangelism, while equipping members to carry out ministry within the scope of the local and global mission of the Seventh-day Adventist church. (Discipleship & Evangelism)
  • Exercises creative and visionary leadership as a minister and servant of Christ, discerning the needs, spiritual gifts and potential of others, in order to equip and engage in their God-given ministries. (Leadership)
  • Facilitates enriching corporate worship that brings diverse peoples into the transforming presence of God. (Worship)
  • Engages the abilities of self and others to strategically steward personal and corporate resources including time, health, finances, property and service in areas of spiritual giftedness. (Administration/Management)
  • Models effective relationships with people of diverse cultures, backgrounds, character, and persuasions, reflecting the wisdom, compassion, and discernment of Jesus through the work of the Spirit. (Relationships)

Social Work MSW

The Master of Social Work (MSW) degree is a professional degree enabling the graduate to enter practice as an advanced-level practitioner. Graduates are prepared to work in a variety of clinical, administration, and development focus areas. The foundation curriculum for the MSW consists of 9 core competencies that are required for every accredited MSW program: 1) Demonstrate ethical and professional behavior; 2) Engage diversity and difference in practice; 3) Advance human rights and social, economic, and environmental justice; 4) Engage in practice-informed research and research-informed practice; 5) Engage in policy practice; 6) Engage with individuals, families, groups, organizations and communities; 7) Assess and plan with individuals, families, groups, organizations and communities; 8) Intervene with individuals, families, groups, organizations and communities; and 9) Evaluate practice with individuals, families, groups, organizations and communities. In addition, our program has added an additional competency: 10) Demonstrate a Christian social work perspective. The curriculum is designed to teach students the knowledge, values and skills, along with understanding of the cognitive and affective reactions and judgement that accompany these dimensions. Measurement outcomes for these competencies can be found on the first page of the Andrews University School of Social Work website. The Andrews University MSW program is accredited by the Council of Social Work Education through the year 2027.


All tracks of the MSW program are available in the face-to-face format. The Regular Standing and Accelerated Regular Standing tracks are also available in the interactive online synchronous format (see School of Distance Education  definitions). Online students are encouraged to come to campus for graduation.

Dual Degrees Options

The MSW Dual Degree Programs allow the student to complete two degrees in one additional year, with a tuition reduction of 33% for the MSW credits. To facilitate this objective, the two programs will reduce the total number of required credits and will share a practicum and a limited number of elective courses. Specifically, the School of Social Work will reduce the required number of credits by 9-10 credits by allowing students to take their required social work electives in the other graduate program. In addition, approximately 16 credits will be shared between the two programs. The following Dual Degree options are available:


Core advanced interpersonal practice courses supplemented by optional areas of focus are offered. Students wishing to enroll in core graduate social work courses must be enrolled in the MSW program and/or have the instructor’s permission. Students may transfer up to 20% of the credits from one degree into the MSW program. All courses are subject to change based on accreditation needs.

Areas of Focus

Students may choose to specialize in the following focus areas: Human Resources, Mental Health, School Social Work, Marriage & Family, Christian Ministry, International Social Work, and Medical Social Work. Please refer to the School of Social Work website for further information: Students are not required to choose a focus area.

Additional Requirements

  • A minimum cumulative GPA of 3.00 in Social Work Program.
  • No grade of D or F (or U) may count toward a graduate degree.
  • The maintenance at all times of professional conduct and behaviors appropriate for a social worker according to the National Association of Social Workers’ Code of Ethics.
  • Defense of the professional degree portfolio as part of SOWK689 Advanced Professional Seminar. This portfolio is a demonstrative collection of professional competencies.
  • Other Andrews University degree requirements as presented in the Graduate Academic Information section of this bulletin.

Past experience strengthens all MSW student applications. However, following Council on Social Work Education requirements, no social work course credit can be given for life experience or previous work experience.

Admission Requirements

English Language Requirements

For those applicants whose native language is not English, the following is required:

  1. Demonstration of English proficiency by obtaining at least a minimum score on any one of the following exams. Exam must be taken within two years prior to enrollment.
    • TOEFL ITP (paper-based): A minimum score of 550
    • TOEFL iBT (internet-based): 80 with a minimum of 20 on each section
    • IELTS (Academic version ): 6.5
    • PTE (Academic version): 54
  2. MSW program participates in the Bridge program which allows students who are close to the minimum scores to take 3-6 credits of MSW courses along with ESL courses. Requirements to participate in the Bridge program are below.
    • TOEFL ITP (paper-based): A score of 500-549 (2-3 ESL courses and up to 3-6 credits of regular MSW course work)* OR

                  *with permission of the department

  1. Nelson Denny: score of 13
  2. Personal interview with MSW program director or designee

Applicants who fail to meet any of the above may be admitted only after committee consideration of the specific circumstances. Additional course work in English may be required.

A student who graduated from a four-year English-speaking high school, college or university may be exempted from all or parts of the above requirements.

Graduate Record Examination (GRE)

Students who are applying for admission to the MSW program are not required to take the GRE.  For those students who are seeking the GRE scholarship, the GRE must be taken. The amount of a potential scholarship is related to the score achieved on the GRE as follows:

GRE Score Scholarship
320 50% tuition reduction
310 25% tuition reduction
300 10% tuition reduction

Additional Information

MSW Scholarship

Since the MSW program does not require the GRE, an equivalent graduate scholarship is offered in the department. The amount of potential scholarship is related to GPA and supporting documents. This applies to the last 3 semesters of the program. Please refer to the School of Social Work website for further information:

GPA Scholarship
3.90 - 4.00 50% tuition reduction
3.50 - 3.89 25% tution reduction
3.30 - 3.49 10% tuition reduction*

*available to Advanced standing 1 year students only, based on BSW GPA


Students have the opportunity to apply for graduate assistantships—teaching or research. These assistantships give students the opportunity to develop their expertise. Students interested in becoming social-work educators—especially those with years of clinical experience—may teach undergraduate courses. Research assistantships offer experiences in community consulting, grant writing, and/or conducting research.


MSW Student Handbook

The MSW Student Handbook has been designed as the social work student’s aid in understanding the program requirements of the School of Social Work as well as relevant policies of Andrews University. Inside the handbook you will find information such as expectations of students, the MSW curriculum, departmental policies, and other relevant information.

Field Manual

The Field Manual has been designed as your aid in understanding field education requirements, your role as a student in a field agency, and relevant policies of Andrews University.

You are responsible for the information found in this handbook, so please take the time to familiarize yourself with the handbook and know where to find questions and answers if the need arises.

Student Learning Outcomes

Students who complete this program will:

  • Demonstrate ethical and professional behavior
  • Engage diversity and difference in practice
  • Advance human rights and social, economic, and environmental justice
  • Engage in practice-informed research and research-informed practice
  • Engage in policy practice
  • Engage with Individuals, Families, Groups, Organizations, and Communities
  • Assess and Plan with Individuals, Families, Groups, and Communities
  • Intervene with Individuals, Families, Groups, Organizations, and Communities
  • Evaluate Practice with Individuals, Families, Groups, Organizations, and Communities
  • Demonstrate a Christian Social Work Perspective

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