Master of Social Work /

Master of Business Administration

All graduate degrees

Social Work Information Session:  
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The MSW/MBA dual degree equips the BSW professional with interdisciplinary expertise in social work, business, and healthcare leadership. At Southern, this means building a wholistic, Christ-centered philosophy for leadership, management, and research. 

The School of Social Work now offers two participation options for select courses based on their learning purposes and content. Students may choose to attend these courses in person on campus or synchronously via Zoom every other Sunday during the semester. All other course requirements for both groups of students are completed online. All students, whether full time or part time, Foundation or Advanced placement, can choose to complete the program fully online. 

How the program works

Designed to meet the needs of the broadest spectrum of students, official classes meet twice a month on Sundays with the option of joining virtually or in person. In between class sessions, all students complete course assignments online. 

  • Advanced placement: With a bachelor's degree in social work from a Council on Social Work Education (CSWE) -accredited institution, qualifying students can typically complete the master’s program in 12 months (three semesters) on a full-time basis.
  • Foundation placement:  With a bachelor’s degree in another discipline (or from a non-accredited BSW program), full-time students typically can complete the program in six semesters.

To qualify for the dual degree program, students must be accepted into both the Schools of Social Work and Business. Typically, students focus on completing classes from one degree at a time, though overlap is acceptable if scheduling allows. 

  • Social work classes meet in person on campus or synchronously via Zoom every other Sunday during the semester and incorporate an online component for completing coursework.
  • MBA classes are available on-campus and online.
  • Full-time and part-time enrollment options can be customized to fit your life.
  • Online courses provide even more convenience and flexibility.

With a bachelor's degree in social work from a CSWE-accredited institution, qualifying students can typically complete the dual master’s program in 24 months (six semesters) on a full-time basis.

Eligibility and prerequisites

This list includes requirements for both the School of Business and the School of Social Work:

  • Bachelor's degree: A bachelor’s degree from an accredited program, with coursework indicating a strong liberal arts background. (Advanced placement requires a Bachelor's of Social Work degree from a CSWE-accredited program.)
  • GPA requirement: Possess a preferred GPA of at least 3.0 (on a 4.00 scale) in social work courses for Advanced placement and 2.75 for Foundation placement

Admission process

  1. Graduate application:  Submit a graduate application (with non-refundable fee of $40). Apply now
  2. Transcripts:  Submit official college and university transcripts. Many institutions subscribe to the convenient transcript-request service at National Student Clearinghouse, or you may also contact your institution directly. Have your transcripts sent to the Graduate and Professional Studies office ( If you earned your prerequisite degree at Southern, you do not need to complete this step.
  3. Recommendations:  Submit two recommendation forms from a college professor, work supervisor, or social-work field instructor. This should be done as part of the online application process.
  4. Personal statement:  Submit a personal statement describing your motivation for graduate school in social work. It should be submitted through your Application Status PageDownload guidelines
  5. Resumé:  Submit your current resumé through your Application Status Page.
  6. GMAT requirement:  Submit scores from the Graduate Management Admission Test taken within the past five years. 
    • Possible exceptions: With approval, applicants may be admitted without the GMAT if they have an undergraduate degree from an accredited U.S. institution with a minimum GPA of 3.25 or above, or a GPA of 3.00 and five years of full-time business-related management experience. 

Application deadlines

All application steps are to be fully completed by the dates listed.

Term U.S. Residents International
Fall July 1 May 1
Winter November 1 September1
Summer April 1 (MBA program only) February 1 (MBA program only)

International students

Applicants who are not citizens or permanent residents of the United States are considered international students and must meet additional requirements for admission.

  • View international-student admission requirements »

    1. All non-U.S. transcripts must be submitted through one of the following approved credential evaluation agencies: Evaluations are to be sent directly to Southern, Graduate Studies, by the service. All evaluation reports are considered to be advisory. Southern reserves the right to make final equivalency decisions.
    2. Certification of English proficiency.
      See School specific requirements in the Graduate Catalog. Scores are valid for two years from the test date. Learn more at:
    3. Submit Declaration of Finances.
      International students must have financial resources sufficient to support themselves for the calendar year, in addition to an international-student deposit of $3,000 (USD). Download Form
      • To be issued an I-20 Form, students must also provide a letter from financial sponsors (including their name and address), as well as copies of bank statements for the last three months showing the balance history for the student's account or the financial sponsor's account.

International students who will be coming to Southern's campus need additional information about travel documents and living on campus.

If you have questions or need additional information, please contact the International Student Services Coordinator at 423.236.2845 or

More Information

Course guide

MSW CORE Courses Credits
  SOCW 608 Advanced Social Policy 3
  SOCW 611 Advanced Clinical Practice: Clinical Interventions 3
  SOCW 612 Advanced Administrative Practice: Program Development 3
  SOCW 617 Advanced Clinical Practice: Clinical Assessment, Psychopathology and Psychotherapeutic Skills 3
  SOCW 618 Advanced Administrative Practice: Administrative and Leadership Skills 3
  SOCW 620 Advanced Portfolio Seminar I 1
  SOCW 621 Advanced Portfolio Seminar II 1
  SOCW 641 Integration of Faith and Advanced Practice: Seminar I 1
  SOCW 642 Integration of Faith and Advanced Practice: Seminar II 1
  SOCW 647 Advanced Practicum 1-5
MSW Core Subtotal 24
MBA Core Courses Credits
  BUAD 510 Accounting for Control and Decision Making 3
  BUAD 530 Organizational Behavior 3
  BUAD 535 Operations Management 3
  BUAD 555 Leadership and Change 3
  BUAD 562 Integrating Faith and Business 3
  BUAD 570 Strategic Decision Making 3
  HADM 532 Healthcare Economics and Finance 3
  HADM 552 Healthcare Marketing and Human Resources 3
MBA Core Subtotal 24
Management Emphasis Credits
  BEXM 505 Legal Framework of Decisions 3
  BHRM 510 Human Resource Management 3
  ECON 521 Managerial Economics 3
  BEXM Management Electives 6
Management Emphasis Subtotal 12
  Also required if lacking undergraduate equivalents:
ACCT 505    Financial Accounting, 3 hours
FNCE 505    Principles of Finance, 3 hours
  Total 60


Stephanie Sheehan
Stephanie Sheehan


Evie Nogales Baker
Evie Nogales Baker

Associate Professor

Braam Oberholster
Braam Oberholster


Lunelle Bertresse
Lunelle Bertresse

Assistant Professor

Stephanie Guster
Stephanie Guster

Associate Professor

Julie Hyde
Julie Hyde


Lorri Merchant
Lorri Merchant


Nina Nelson
Nina Nelson

Associate Professor

Sunia Fukofuka
Sunia Fukofuka


Corneliu Rusu
Corneliu Rusu


Kristie Wilder
Kristie Wilder


Get started

I am here to help if you have any questions about applying to the programs or enrolling. You are welcome to email or call for information about everything from admission to graduation. I look forward to working with you.

Tricia Foster

Graduate Enrollment Counselor