M.Div./MATS Application Process

Admission/Scholarship Deadlines

October 1 - Spring Admission
February 15 - Fall Admission

Applicant's Checklist

All items on this checklist must be received by the application deadline. Further instruction is given on the online application.

  • Completed online application
  • Personal Faith Narrative Essay
  • Academic Essay on the topic of the Apostles' Creed
  • Academic Recommendation (to be completed by a college- or graduate-level instructor)
  • Pastoral Recommendation (to be completed by your senior pastor, other member of the pastoral staff or campus minister; cannot be a family member)
  • Church Endorsement (to be completed by the governing body of your church of membership). *This may be completed, if needed, by the same person who completes your pastoral recommendation form. However, please make the pastor aware he/she will need to complete both recommendation forms.
  • Admission Interview:
    Each applicant is responsible for scheduling an interview. Interviews must be completed prior to the application deadline. It is recommended that your interview be completed on campus, but if this is not possible, interviews conducted by phone or Skype are acceptable. Schedule your interview through your application portal.
  • Official Transcript: Official transcript(s) from all undergraduate and (if applicable) graduate institutions previously attended should be mailed to:

    Beeson Divinity School
    Office of Admission
    800 Lakeshore Drive
    Birmingham, Alabama 35229

    Or, an official electronic transcript can be emailed to: shead@samford.edu.

    A final transcript also is required upon completion of your undergraduate degree. Transcripts are considered official only when they bear the issuing institution's seal and arrive with the seal intact.
  • $35 non-refundable fee that may be paid by credit card when submitting online application (not required for graduates of Samford University)

International Students

The application process for international students is unique and can seem complicated. It is our hope that this page will reduce this stress by taking you step by step through the process.

Preliminary Evaluations

Prospective international students must complete and submit the following evaluations to the Beeson Divinity School Office of Admission before beginning the standard application process for admission.

  • World Educational Service (Official course-by-course transcript of academic work sent through World Educational Services)
  • TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) Any applicant whose native language is not English must also submit a score of at least 550 (paper-based) or 80 (Internet-based) on the TOEFL. Students should arrange to take the TOEFL by visiting www.toefl.org or by writing to Educational Testing Service at P.O. Box 955, Princeton, NJ 08540.

Once the above material is completed, an international prospect may begin the standard application process by clicking on the "Apply Now" button below. Following an admission decision, the applicant will need to complete the Affidavit of Financial Support, including an official bank statement.  The USCIS (United States Citizenship and Immigration Services) requires proof of funds totaling approximately $30,000 (minus any scholarship assistance) in order for an I-20 to be processed, therefore it is recommended that funding is secured before the completion of the application process.

*A note regarding student visas: The United States Information Agency's insurance regulations for J visa holders require international students and their dependents to have and maintain health insurance during residency in the United States. Proof of coverage is required before registering for classes. The law mandates that Samford University must deny student status to international students who do not continue to comply. Information about specific carriers, minimum coverages, and premium costs is available from Samford University Health Services.

Please contact Jennifer Beck if you have any questions.

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D.Min. Admission Process

Beeson Divinity School admits new students to the D.Min. program once a year. The application deadline is February 1; new students attend their first seminar in the summer term of the same year.

Candidates for admission must meet the following minimum criteria:

  • Master of Divinity (M.Div.) degree or its educational equivalent from an institution(s) accredited by the Association of Theological Schools in the United States and Canada (ATS)
  • Grade point average of 3.0 or higher (on a 4.0 scale) in previous graduate-level studies (Probationary admission is possible with a GPA of 2.75 or higher.)
  • Currently engaged in vocational Christian ministry, with a minimum of 3 years of full-time ministry experience following completion of the M.Div. degree
  • Regular responsibilities and opportunities for preaching and teaching the Scriptures

Application requirements

  • Completed online application form and payment of non-refundable $50 application fee by check or money order (Please include your social security number on the memo line)
  • Official transcripts from all educational institutions attended since high school [Please note: Since individual institutions may not fulfill transcript requests immediately, transcript requests should be made several weeks before the application deadline.]
  • Current résumé
  • Philosophy of ministry essay (see guidelines for essay below)
  • Personal interview with the Director of D.Min. Studies. The interview may be conducted by videoconference for persons who live a great distance from the school. To schedule an interview, please call 205-726-2374. Please schedule interviews several weeks prior to the application deadline.
  • Recommendation forms completed by the following:
    • A minister who knows you well
    • A professor who knows you well
    • A layperson who is familiar with your ministry
    • A professional person who has observed your ministry

NOTE: Recommendation forms are automatically generated through the online application once required information is input.

  • Applicants for whom English is not their first language and/or who completed their master’s degree in a language other than English must take the TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language).  A minimum score of 550 is required for admission.

Guidelines for Philosophy of Ministry Essay

An applicant for admission to the Doctor of Ministry degree program will write a philosophy of ministry essay in which he or she identifies and discusses four (4) foundational principles for preaching and teaching the Scriptures. For each principle, the applicant must provide biblical-theological support, explain its importance or relevance to faithful proclamation, and give an example of how the principle finds expression in his or her ministry. The applicant must cite a minimum of 5 sources in footnoted references; the essay must also include a bibliography of all works cited. The essay must be paginated, and it should be written in conformity with Turabian style (Kate L. Turabian, A Manual for Writers, 8th ed.).The essay should be 8-10 pages in length, double-spaced, in Times New Roman 12-font. 

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