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The School of Social Work is designed to advance inclusive and innovative education that impacts not only Tennessee but our world today and for eternity. The Master of Social Work (MSW) program prepares practitioners in a Christian learning environment for excellence and leadership across systems, and in advanced autonomous social work practice.


Program Design

The MSW program was designed using an advanced integrated practice model. Rather than asking advanced year students to select between micro (direct) or macro (indirect) practice, graduate students are taught an integrative model that reflects the full-systems need that advanced practitioners face each day in the real-world practice environment. Building on the generalist foundation competencies and skills, advanced MSW students will gain added expertise in the areas of work with individuals, families, groups, organizations, communities, societies all in the global context.


The School of Social Work offers a Master of Social Work degree with the following emphases:

  • Child and Family Advocacy and Treatment
  • International Social Work
  • Marital Therapy and Stability
  • Trauma and Emergency Management
  • Older Adult Enrichment

*Specialization choices availability dependent on number of students interested in specialization.



The Commission on Accreditation (COA) from the Council on Social Work Education has granted full accreditation to Southern Adventist University’s Master of Social Work (MSW) program. Southern Adventist University maintains compliance with the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges of the (SACS-COC) and the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE).


More on Graduate Studies at Southern Adventist University.



Our robust competency-based program is grounded within the profession of social work’s fundamental pillars of knowledge, values, and skills. One distinctive feature of our program is its advanced integrative practice, which offers excellent full-systems learning opportunities to students. This approach helps graduate students hone their advanced social work skills in practice as well as cement their understanding of key social work issues with up to-date knowledge.


The MSW program is driven by a deliberate attempt toward student-centered experiential learning. This is crucial to stimulating student thinking and to providing appropriate contexts for linking knowledge with 21st Century best practices.


As a hybrid initiative, the MSW program is designed to meet the needs of both traditional and non-traditional students by integrating both face-to-face and web-based learning. Our MSW program offers a two-year programmatic framework that includes a generalist foundation for the first year and an advanced integrative practice level in the second year that is culminating by completing different elective specialization options. Students may complete this program at either a full-time or part-time course load.


With great intentionality, our program is designed to co-opt individual student passions.  This allows our graduates to become a positive force in the fight against contemporary injustices both locally and globally. Our students are well prepared to become agents for facilitating aggressive positive personal and social change.


You can direct questions related to the program’s content and/or program structure to Dr. Mioara Diaconu, Interim Director of the MSW program.

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