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Deanna Ojennus
Director of Assessment & Accreditation


Institutional Accreditation

Whitworth University is a member institution with the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCU). Whitworth's accreditation status is "Accreditation Reaffirmed." The NWCCU's most recent action on the institution's accreditation status on July 24, 2018 was to reaffirm accreditation. NWCCU is an institutional accrediting agency recognized by the U.S. Secretary of Education and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA).

Accreditation of an institution of higher education by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities indicates that it meets or exceeds criteria for the assessment of institutional quality evaluated through a peer review process. An accredited college or university is one which has the necessary resources available to achieve its stated purposes through appropriate educational programs, is substantially doing so and gives reasonable evidence that it will continue to do so in the foreseeable future.

Institutional integrity is also addressed through accreditation. Accreditation by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities is not partial but applies to the institution as a whole. As such, it is not a guarantee of every course or program offered or the competence of individual graduates. Rather, it provides reasonable assurance about the quality of opportunities available to students who attend the institution. Inquiries regarding an institution's accredited status by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities should be directed to the administrative staff of the institution. Individuals may also contact:

Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities
8060 165th Ave. N.E.
Redmond, WA 98052

Whitworth is also a member of the Association of American Colleges & Universities, the American Council of Education, the Association of Presbyterian Colleges and Universities, the Council of Independent Colleges, the CIC Network for Vocation in Undergraduate Education, the Council for Higher Education Accreditation, and the National Association of Independent Colleges and Universities. It is also a collaborative partner of the Council for Christian Colleges and Universities.

Programmatic Accreditation

In addition to our institutional accreditation which applies to all programs at Whitworth University, the following is a list of programs at Whitworth that are also accredited by other external programmatic accrediting agencies.

  • The Whitworth Music Department is accredited by the National Association of Schools of Music. 
  • The B.S. Engineering major is accredited by the Engineering Accreditation Commission (EAC) of ABET.
  • The Whitworth School of Business is an accredited member of AACSB International – The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business.
  • In the School of Education, the teacher certification programs, school counseling program and school administration program are approved by the State of Washington Professional Educator Standards Board.
  • The M.Ed. in School Counseling Program is accredited by the Masters in Psychology and Counseling Accreditation Council (MPCAC) for the period of December 2020 through December 2028.
  • The Whitworth Marriage & Family Therapy Program is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation for Marriage and Family Therapy Education. 
  • The Master of Science in Athletic Training (MSAT) program is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Athletic Training Education (CAATE). Verification of accreditation status and program outcomes are available at
  • Effective July 19, 2022, Whitworth University has been granted Candidate for Accreditation status by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (3030 Potomac Ave., Suite 100, Alexandria, Virginia 22305-3085; phone: 703-706-3245; email: If needing to contact the program/institution directly, please call 509.777.4442 or email Candidate for Accreditation is an accreditation status of affiliation with the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education that indicates the program may matriculate students in technical/professional courses. Achievement of Candidate for Accreditation status does not assure that the program will be granted Initial Accreditation. Graduation from a physical therapist education program accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE), 3030 Potomac Ave., Suite 100, Alexandria, VA 22305-3085; phone, is necessary for eligibility to sit for the licensure examination, which is required in all states.
  • The entry-level occupational therapy doctoral degree program has applied for accreditation and has been granted Candidacy Status by the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE) of the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA), located at: 6116 Executive Boulevard, Suite 200, North Bethesda, MD 20852-4929. ACOTE's telephone number c/o AOTA is (301) 652-AOTAand its web address is Loriann Helgeson OTD, OTR/L, CLA ( is the department chair.

State Authorization & Disclosures

Washington State

Whitworth University qualifies as "exempt" (WAC 250-61-060) from requiring degree authorization in the State of Washington according to the Washington State Degree-Granting Institutions Act, Chapter 28B.85 RCW. The Washington Student Achievement Council recognizes Whitworth University as a legal degree-granting institution under the exemption criteria. Specific degree programs at Whitworth University are approved by the Washington Student Achievement Council's State Approving Agency for veteran education and training benefits under Section 3675, Chapter 36, Title 38, U.S. Code.

State Authorization Reciprocity Agreements (SARA)

Whitworth University is a participating institution of SARA (State Authorization Reciprocity Agreements) which is a voluntary, regional approach to provide oversight of postsecondary distance education. Under the provisions of SARA, Whitworth is authorized to provide distance education to students residing in other SARA member states. A list of SARA states and participating institutions can be found on the NC-SARA website.

Oregon State

Master of Education in Montessori education programs (M.Ed.) delivered in the State of Oregon are considered a "physical presence" by SARA, thus state authorization is required for conferral of these degrees in other SARA member states. Whitworth University has been granted authorization for these degree programs in the State of Oregon.

This school is a nonprofit organization authorized by the State of Oregon to offer and confer the academic degrees and certificates described herein, following a determination that state academic standards will be satisfied under OAR 583-030. Inquiries concerning the standards or school compliance may be directed to the Higher Education Coordinating Commission Office of Degree Authorization, 3225 25th Street SE, Salem, Oregon 97302.

Students in the Oregon Master of Education in Montessori education programs should attempt to resolve any grievances they may have with their school first. Should attempts to resolve these problems with appropriate school officials fail, or should the student be dissatisfied with the final outcome of the college complaint process, then the Higher Education Coordinating Commission (HECC), can respond to a formal complaint.  Students may contact the Higher Education Coordinating Commission, 3225 25th St. SE, Salem, OR 97302, or by sending an email to Students may also access the HECC complaints web page.

Additional Disclosures

  • Whitworth refund policies can be found on our student accounting services website.
  • If considering an academic program that leads to a professional license or certification in your state, it is highly recommended that you first seek guidance from the appropriate licensing agency in your home state before beginning an academic program outside of your state. Whitworth University programs intended to meet criteria for certification or a professional license in the State of Washington may not transfer to another state. Please click here for more information about Whitworth University programs that may lead to state licensure or certification.
  • The process for all consumer complaints, including processes for students enrolled in distance learning programs or courses, can be found on our student consumer complaint process website.
  • Whitworth University can only deliver distance education outside the State of Washington if authorized to do so by the state in which the student is located. Students who begin a program and then change their state of residence to a state where the institution is not authorized to deliver the degree program may experience educational delays, loss of financial aid, and/or may be unenrolled from the program.
  • Whitworth University currently has no adverse actions taken against it by any states or accrediting agencies.

Prospective and enrolled students may request to review Whitworth's accreditation, approval or licensing documents by contacting the director of assessment and accreditation (

Contact Information

Deanna Ojennus
Director of Assessment & Accreditation