The mission of Central Washington University is to prepare students for enlightened, responsible, and productive lives; to produce research, scholarship, and creative expression in the public interest; and to serve as a resource to the region and the state through effective stewardship of university resources.


Accreditation provides CWU periodic opportunities to examine the quality of our academic programs and services and to document how we continually work to improve those programs and services.

Accreditation also provides the opportunity to examine the extent of our mission fulfillment across our five Core Themes:

  • Teaching and Learning
  • Inclusiveness and Diversity
  • Scholarship and Creative Expression
  • Public Service and Community Engagement
  • Resource Development and Stewardship

CWU makes many promises to students, their family members, faculty, staff, and our surrounding communities. The accreditation process is our time to examine those promises - and to take stock of how well we are keeping them.

Download the Spring 2018 University Community Briefing about our upcoming accreditation visit.

Types of Accreditation

  • Regional - for institutions
  • Specialized - for specific programs

Regional Accreditation

The Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCU) is the regional accreditor for CWU. CWU's Year-Seven evaluation site visit is scheduled for 22-24 October 2018.

NWCCU conducted a Mid-Cycle Evaluation (MCE) of CWU in Fall 2014. Please click on the links below for information about that evaluation.

CWU submitted a Year One Report to NWCCU in Fall 2011. Please click on the links below for information about that report:

CWU's most recent comprehensive NWCCU evaluation took place in Fall 2009. Please click on the links below for information about that evaluation:

For the complete history of CWU's NWCCU regional accreditation from 1918 onward, please see: CWU NWCCU History

Specialized Accreditation

CWU holds several specialized accreditations:

  • Applied and Natural Science Accreditation Commission of ABET
  • Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business International (AACSB)
  • American Council for Construction Education (ACCE)
  • Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND)
  • American Chemical Society (Committee on Professional Training)
  • Commission for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP)
  • Engineering Technology Accreditation Commission of ABET
  • National Association of Schools of Music (NASM)


Accreditation began as a voluntary process of peer review to establish standards for quality educational offerings, institutional integrity, and to transfer credits from one institution to another. Occurring during the late 19th and early 20th centuries, when travel was more limited and institutions were less differentiated in their offerings, it made sense that colleges and universities would form these voluntary associations based on region.


  • Research grants
  • Programs that serve CWU students:
    • College Assistance Migrant Program (CAMP)
    • GEAR-UP
    • Upward Bound
    • Student Support Services
    • McNair Scholars Program
  • Title IV funding:
    • Federal student loans
    • Pell grants
    • Work study funds
    • All other federal student financial aid