The CASWE-ACFTS Procedures for Accreditation guide the schools through the accreditation process. The document provides information about the types of accreditation, details on deadlines and due dates for reports, as well as the responsibilities of the Commission of Accreditation (COA).
The Board of Directors has approved the 2021 Educational Policies and Accreditation Standards (EPAS). The Commission on Accreditation is recommending a transitional period of two years, during which Schools of Social Work can chose either the 2014 Accreditation Standards or the 2021 Educational Policies and Accreditation Standards. This transitional period will be effective from July 1, 2021 to June 30, 2023. The Commission on Accreditation will use the set of Standards chosen by the School of Social Work when assessing their program(s). When submitting their Self-Study Report, the Schools of Social Work will need to identify clearly which document they have selected.
Effective July 1, 2023, all Schools of Social Work will be expected to use the 2021 Educational Policies and Accreditation Standards in their reporting and therefore expected to comply with these Standards.
The Commission on Accreditation (COA) is composed of a maximum of fifteen (15) members, all of whom are social work educators from all parts of Canada. The Terms of office are normally three years, renewable twice. The COA is co-chaired by one Francophone and one Anglophone member. Current COA members are listed below.
École de travail social, Université du Québec à Montréal
School of Social Work, University of British Columbia
Department of Indigenous Education, Health and Social Work, First Nations University of Canada
School of Social Work, King’s University College at Western University
UNBC School of social Work
University of Windsor
School of Social Work, Carleton University
Université du Québec à Montréal
Memorial University of Newfoundland and Labrador
University of Calgary
École de service social, Université Laurentienne
School of Social Work, Lakehead University
École de travail social, Université de Moncton
Frequently Asked Questions
I am a graduate of a social work program accredited by the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE) in the USA. Is this degree recognized in Canada?
Yes, CASWE-ACFTS has a mutual degree recognition agreement with the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE) stating that degrees from CASWE-ACFTS and CSWE accredited BSW and MSW programs are considered equivalent.
I am looking to obtain my MSW outside of Canada but I want to know which programs would be recognized so when I’ve graduated I can work in Ontario as a social worker. Do you have that information or are aware where I can go to obtain it?
CASWE-ACFTS has a mutual degree recognition agreement with the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE) stating that degrees from CASWE-ACFTS and CSWE accredited BSW and MSW programs are considered equivalent. If you choose to study in another country, you must have your degree assessed by the Canadian Association for Social Workers (CASW) for equivalency (http://www.casw-acts.ca/) in order to register with the provincial social work licensing/regulatory body. If you complete a BSW in another country and intend to apply to a graduate program in Canada, the specific university admissions’ office determines whether the degree is recognized by their university. Please contact the program’s admission’s office directly.
I am an MSW graduate from India. I would like to work in Canada as a Social Worker. I understand that my degree needs to be assessed in order for me to work in Canada. Can you please tell me the procedures I need to follow?
Generally, in order for social work graduates to work in Canada, they must become members of the provincial social work licensing/regulatory body. The Canadian Association for Social Worker (CASW) evaluates foreign Social Work degrees for equivalency. They have a well-established procedure to assess foreign social work credentials. CASW provides the assessment service for provincial / territorial member organizations except in the provinces of British Columbia and Quebec. Their web site is: http://www.casw-acts.ca
I am currently looking for a social work program in Canada. There is one that I am interested in but I read on the website that it has “Pre-Accreditation” status. Can you please tell me what Pre-Accreditation status refers to? If I graduate from that program will I still be able to register with the provincial College of Social Workers?
Pre-Accreditation Status means that a program (MSW or BSW) within a school of Social Work is in the process of obtaining their First Accreditation. This is an intensive process in which the Commission on Accreditation works closely with the school to ensure that their program meets the Standards for Accreditation. If you graduate from a program currently in Pre-Accreditation Status, and the program attains First Accreditation status, the program is retro-actively granted accreditation status for the Pre-Accreditation period, meaning that your degree is considered to be from an accredited program. If, for some reasons, the program is not granted First Accreditation, then your degree will not be from an accredited program (this situation is very unlikely).
I am currently attending a social work program that is not listed on the CASWE-ACFTS as an accredited social work program is Canada. Can you tell me the implication of this?
If you have a degree from a program that is not accredited by CASWE-ACFTS, then there is no expectation that the program meets expected Canadian standards in social work education. A program that has not been assessed by the Commission on Accreditation has not participated in a rigorous accreditation process to ensure the program adheres to specific standards, identifies learning objectives for students, and integrates principles such as human rights and social justice into the social work education process. The CASWE-ACFTS accreditation process aims to promote excellence in social work education, scholarship, and practice with a social justice focus.
I was told that there was a list of the CASWE-ACFTS accredited social work programs. Where can I access this list?
You will be able to find the list of all the accredited social work programs on the Association website at https://caswe-acfts.ca/members/. You will click on Institutional member and then on Universities. You will then have access to all universities having a social work program (s) accredited by CASWE-ACFTS. When you click on any university, this will take you to the module, school, department or faculty of social work website.
Mutual Recognition of Accredited Degrees
Agreement of Mutual Recognition of Accredited Degrees The Canadian Association for Social Work Education (CASWE-ACFTS) has mutual degree recognition agreements with the National Indigenous Accreditation Board (NIAB) on Turtle Island and the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE) in the United-States.
List of NIAB accredited programs
Maskwacis Cultural College
UnBQ – University nuxełhot’įne thaaɁehots’į nistameyimâkanak Blue Quills
Red Crow Community College
Yellowhead Tribal College
If you choose to study in another country, or have a degree from another country and wish to work as a social worker in Canada, you must have your degree assessed by the Canadian Association for Social Workers (CASW) for equivalency in order to register with a provincial social work regulatory body. CASW provides the assessment service for provincial / territorial member organizations except in the provinces of British Columbia and Quebec.
Directory of CASWE-ACFTS Accredited Programs
Directory of CASWE-ACFTS Accredited Programs
Here is the most recently updated version of the Accreditation Directory, which presents current and historical periods of accreditation for CASWE-ACFTS accredited social work programs. This directory is updated twice a year, following the Commission on Accreditation meetings.
List of Accredited Programs
There are currently 43 schools/faculties/departments/modules in Canada that offer CASWE-ACFTS accredited programs; some providing a BSW program, a MSW program or both. All universities that offer CASWE-ACFTS accredited social work program(s) are listed below. You can click on the links to learn more about their specific social work program(s).
1. Bachelor Program – Programme de Baccalauréat
2. Master Program – Programme de Maitrise
3. Ph.D Program – Programme de Doctorat
4. Distance Education Available – Formation à distance disponible
5. French and English Programs available – Programme disponible en français et en anglais
6. French Program – Programme en français
7. English Program – Programme en anglais
8. Preaccreditation BSW – Préagrément BTS
9. Preaccreditation MSW – Préagrément MTS
Carleton University 1 2 3 7
Dalhousie University 1 2 4 7
Lakehead University 1 2 7
McGill University 1 2 3 7
McMaster University 1 2 3 7
Ryerson University 1 2 7
St. Thomas University 1 7 9
Trent University 1 7
Université d’Ottawa 1 2 3 6
Université de Moncton 1 2 6
Université de Montréal 1 2 3 6
Université de Sherbrooke 1 2 6
Université Laval 1 2 3 6
University of Calgary 1 2 3 4 7
University of Manitoba 1 2 3 4 7
University of Regina 1 2 7
University of the Fraser Valley 1 2 4 7
University of Toronto 2 3 7
University of Victoria 1 2 4 7
University of Windsor 1 2 3 7
Wilfrid Laurier University 1 2 3 4 7
York University 1 2 3 7