Question: Is Walden University's online MSW program accredited?

Answer: Walden University’s online Master of Social Work (MSW) programs are in the Candidacy phase of accreditation and are not yet fully accredited by the CSWE.

Walden University’s new online MSW programs were announced in June 2013, when Walden applied for accreditation with the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE). In October 2013, the online MSW program was granted candidacy status from the CSWE. Universities seeking CSWE accreditation must first achieve candidacy status before they can apply for initial accreditation. The candidacy phase of accreditation takes between 3.5 and 4.5 years to complete. Once Walden achieves initial accreditation, it will retroactively cover all students who entered on or after the Fall 2013 semester (assuming initial accreditation is granted). If initial accreditation is not granted, universities seeking accreditation have the ability to address compliance issues during a deferment period.

From the CSWE website: 2008 EPAS Handbook Section 3.2.3 (Read more here):

”Only students admitted during or after the academic year in which the program is granted candidacy will be recognized as having graduated from an accredited program. Students admitted prior to the academic year in which the program was granted candidacy would not be recognized as having graduated from a CSWE-accredited social work education program.”

From Walden University’s website (Read more here):

”CSWE supports the acceptance of students into new MSW programs at any time during the academic year (September through June) that a program receives candidacy… Because the Walden MSW program achieved CSWE candidacy status during the 2013 – 2014 academic year, if it goes on to achieve accreditation according to the CSWE timeline, then students admitted into the MSW program in September 2013 or later would graduate from a CSWE accredited program.”

For students who want more information about the CSWE accreditation process, we recommend contacting the CSWE Office of Social Work Accreditation. They can provide more information about Walden’s status and the percentage of programs that achieve initial accreditation after being granted candidacy status.

There is no guarantee Walden University’s program will attain initial accreditation from the CSWE.

About Walden University’s Online MSW Programs

Walden University’s School of Social Work and Human Services offers online MSW programs designed for both traditional standing and advanced standing students (i.e. students who have already earned a Bachelor of Social Work from a CSWE undergraduate program). The traditional program is offered in both a full-time (2 year) and part-time format, while the advanced standing program takes 18 months to complete. The program has an emphasis on advanced clinical practice and students have the ability to specialize in specific areas with optional elective clusters that include: Addictions; Children, Families, and Couples; Crisis and Trauma; Forensic Populations and Settings; Medical Social Work; and the Military.


Walden University Online MSW Programs: Overview

Department: School of Social Work and Human Services
Degree Types: Traditional and Advanced Standing
Concentrations: General program with an emphasis on advanced clinical practice. Optional elective clusters including: Addictions; Children, Families, and Couples; Crisis and Trauma; Forensic Populations and Settings; Medical Social Work; Military

Program Structure: Online with field experience (note: traditional students must complete two 4-day in-person residencies (one per year), while advanced standing students must complete one 4-day residency – residencies are held at different locations)
Instruction Methods: Inquire
Social Media: Facebook and Twitter

Program Information – Traditional Students

Program Overview
Program Name: Master of Social Work (MSW)
Website: www.waldenu.edu
Phone Number: (866) 492-5336

Program Requirements
Field Education Requirements: A total of 1,000 hours (two field placements: 500 hours each)
Number of Credits Required: 92 to 97 quarter credits required to graduate

Program Length
Program Options: Full-Time and Part-Time Options
Program Length: Full-Time: 2 years; Part-Time: Inquire with school
Program Start Dates: Four start dates throughout the year

Admission Requirements
GPA: Inquire with school
GRE Information: Not Required
Tuition: $46,000 (or $48,500 with optional elective cluster) + fees ($500 per quarter credit hour)

Program Information – Advanced Standing Students

Program Overview
Program Name: Master of Social Work (MSW)
Website: www.waldenu.edu
Phone Number: (866) 492-5336

Program Requirements
Field Education Requirements: A total of 500 hours
Number of Credits Required: 56 to 61 quarter credits required to graduate

Program Length
Program Options: Part-Time Only
Program Length: Program takes 1.5 years (18 months)
Program Start Dates: Four start dates throughout the year

Admission Requirements
BSW Requirement: Students must have earned a BSW from a CSWE accredited institution with a minimum GPA of 3.0
GPA: Minimum GPA of 3.0
GRE Information: Not Required
Tuition: $28,000 (or $30,500 with optional elective cluster) + fees ($500 per quarter credit hour)


More FAQs about Online MSW Programs