As an M.Div. student, you may choose between two field education plans. Plan A features a Clinical Pastoral Education (CPE) experience acquired in-house or in an approved external program. Plan B allows you to complete the requirement by part-time or summer placement in a parish or special ministries site. Each plan allows for the addition of elective experiences, providing for satisfying the various expectations of ordaining bodies. Field Education experiences are required but do not receive course credits. You must complete 24 units of M.Div. course work before beginning field education.
Field Education Plan A: Clinical Pastoral Education
As a Master of Divinity student, you may meet the minimum San Francisco Theological Seminary field education requirement by successfully completing one unit of Clinical Pastoral Education (CPE) at an ACPE accredited site. One unit of CPE requires approximately three hundred hours of field work and one hundred hours of critical reflection through writing assignments, individual supervision, and peer group work.
Option 1: Complete one unit of CPE through the SFTS Clinical Pastoral Education program. This community-based program allows you to fulfill your clinical hours in a hospital, hospice, congregation, street ministry, or other non-traditional CPE setting. It requires a weekly time commitment of approximately 23 hours of field work and several hours of supervised critical reflection over four months. If you wish to complete your CPE unit in the SFTS program, you must apply and be admitted to the program according to its standard policies. Placement is not guaranteed based on your status in the M.Div. program.
Option 2: Complete one unit of CPE through another accredited site. Many CPE sites offer a three-month, full-time CPE internship, and a few sites offer part-time extended units that could run concurrently with seminary coursework. You will find a complete list of accredited programs at www.acpe.edu.
Field Education Plan B: Internship
Master of Divinity students may meet the minimum SFTS field education requirement by successfully completing an internship in a congregation, nonprofit, or other approved internship setting. In addition to your field work, you will be required to engage in critical theological reflection throughout your internship. Specific terms and learning goals for any internship placement must be negotiated with the internship site and approved by SFTS field education staff before you may begin your internship.
Option 1: Complete a nine-month, part-time internship that runs concurrently with seminary coursework. You must spend a minimum of ten hours a week at your internship site under the guidance of an approved internship supervisor. If you complete your internship during the academic year, you will participate in peer group meetings (one hour per week) supervised by the Shaw Family Chair for Clinical Pastoral Education, Rev. Laurie Garrett-Cobbina.
Option 2: Complete a three-month, full-time internship that does not run concurrently with coursework. Such an internship would likely be completed during a summer, but if you are consolidating coursework into fewer than six semesters, you may complete a full-time internship at another time in the year. Full-time interns who do not have access to a peer group during the summer will work with SFTS field education staff to design a plan for supervised critical reflection.