Erikson’s M.S.W. program must be approved and/or accredited by three organizations:
- The Illinois Board of Higher Education (IBHE), which must approve all academic programs offered by Illinois institutions; Completed
- The Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of College and Schools (HLC), Erikson’s regional accrediting body; Completed
- The Council on Social Work Education (CSWE), which is recognized by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation as the sole accrediting agency for social work education in the United States. In process
Graduation from a CSWE-accredited M.S.W. program is a requirement for licensure as a clinical social worker (LCSW). We have received approval by IBHE (August 2012) and HLC (May 2013). We are currently seeking accreditation by CSWE.
CSWE accreditation is a standard three-year process. Erikson has applied under the February 2016 Agenda. During each of the three years, Erikson submits a substantial “Benchmark” report and hosts a visit by a CSWE Commissioner. Pending CSWE approval, at the conclusion of the first year (February 2014), we will receive Candidacy Status. At the conclusion of the second year (February 2015), we will receive 2nd Year Candidacy Status. At the conclusion of the third year (2016), we will receive Initial Accreditation.
On October 3 and 4, 2013, we hosted the first CSWE Commissioner visit. Based on the Commissioner’s favorable response to our Benchmark I report, we are optimistic that we will achieve Candidacy Status in February 2014. The Benchmark I report included a comprehensive description of the program, including mission, learning goals, curriculum, complete syllabi, field instruction manual, student handbook, and assessment plan.
What does this all mean?
The important thing for you to know is that it is a standard practice for students to enter an M.S.W. program while it is undergoing CSWE accreditation. Students who pursue an M.S.W. degree while it is in candidacy status will be considered graduates of a CSWE-accredited program once the program achieves Initial Accreditation. Pending CSWE approval, students entering Erikson’s program in Fall 2014 and graduating in May 2016 will be graduating from an accredited program.
Return to this page for updates on our progress.