Field Education

Field Education at Howard University School of Divinity

At Howard University School of Divinity, Field Education is experiential or contextual learning, incorporating faith, action, and reflection. Field education is an integrative component of our Master of Divinity Degree where students engage practical ministry in diverse ministry settings.

Field Education At Howard University School of Divinity

Field education is an integrative component of our Master of Divinity Degree where students engage practical ministry experience. Field Education advances the mission of Howard University School of Divinity by preparing students to become academic and religious leaders through experiential learning in diverse ministry contexts. Students are placed in congregational ministry, government, clinical and non-profit ministry sites throughout the urban DC, Maryland, and Virginia metropolitan area. Students are required to complete six credit hours (two courses) of field education.  Each Field Education course is composed of two parts: (1) weekly colloquy where students engage in discussions centered on case studies, select readings, and special presentations, and (2) ministry at the field education placement site. These sites include schools, prisons, hospitals, churches (rural, multicultural, suburban, etc.), and non-profit organizations.

Design of Field Education Program 

Normally, a total of 100 hours per semester (e.g., fall or spring) is required. (This total includes time at the site; travel to the site; preparation for tasks at the site; and meetings with site supervisor.) 

The field education placement runs the course of a semester (e.g., fall or spring, usually about 13-15 weeks for each semester). During the academic year, the student may have the same site placement for both semesters. During the summer, the student has the option of doing a 5-week intensive session in either summer session I or II, which satisfies ½ of the field education requirement, or the student may choose the option of doing both sessions for 10-12 weeks (full-time) to completely satisfy the field requirement.  

Integrative Learning, Discernment and Vocational Formation 

As a result of experiential learning through the Field Education program, students integrate their academic learning and their faith in the context of practical ministry experience.  The weekly colloquy provides opportunity for students to reflect on their ministry while engaging in discerning conversations related to call and vocation.  Students also meet regularly with their field education supervisor for mentorship and feedback on their ministry leadership.