Student Life

Social Work Program earns accreditation

This week (Nov. 21) the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE) informed Ron Maurer, director of Trevecca’s Social Work Program, that the program had earned accreditation, ending that program’s four-year application process. In 2010 the social work faculty submitted its application for accreditation to the CSWE, the only accrediting agency for social work education in the United States. Once it was admitted to “candidacy” status in CSWE, Trevecca’s program then began the annual process of meeting CSWE’s four benchmarks, hosting an annual “site visit” by a CSWE representative, and addressing any recommendations from that visit.
 
“In terms of its curricular or class content, Trevecca’s program received very few recommendations for changes because the faculty had already structured the courses according to CSWE standards. That part of the accreditation process was very affirming,” explained Maurer.
 
CSWE accreditation, added Maurer, has three main values for the social work program. First, accreditation by the one U. S. agency for the assessment of social work programs gives credibility to Trevecca’s program. Second, this “stamp of approval” means that social work credits earned at Trevecca are immediately transferrable and that graduates of Trevecca’s social work program are eligible to earn bachelor of social work (BSW) licensure because they hold a bachelor’s degree from an accredited program. (The State of Tennessee requires this kind of licensure for social workers.) Third, this sanction now entitles Trevecca’s social work graduates to “advance standing” for admission to graduate programs, an authorization that means they can earn a master’s degree in social work in as little as ten months.
 
“Trevecca’s Social Work Program has been a quality program, and now this accreditation evidences that quality, and it clearly enhances Trevecca’s mission to prepare people to serve through the profession of social work,” affirmed Joy Wells, associate professor of sociology and social work and the field education director for the program.
 
In 2018, CSWE will review the program again with the goal of extending its accreditation for eight more years.