U.S. News & World Report ranks USF programs

According to U.S. News & World Report, online learning is fast becoming an integral part of all types of education, including higher education, and consumers are hungry for information related to online degrees. That is why in addition to ranking schools as it has done for years, U.S. News is now ranking online programs.

In its recently-released “Best Online Programs” listing, the University of St. Francis (USF) was once again recognized for top performance. USF’s online graduate programs in both education and business were the top among Illinois private schools ranked, and USF’s online programs in nursing were sixth among Illinois private schools ranked.

While this was the second year in a row for high honors for the College of Business and Health Administration (COBHA), it was a first for USF’s College of Education. A highlight included USF being ranked 5th nationally (of 195 schools) in the “Student Engagement Category,” which includes criteria such as national accreditation, best practices, graduation and retention rates and class size.

According to the U.S. News & World Report website, “Much like in a classroom setting, quality online graduate education programs grant aspiring teachers and educational administrators opportunities to readily interact with their instructors and fellow classmates. In turn, instructors are not only accessible and responsive, but they are also tasked with helping to create an experience rewarding enough that students stay enrolled and complete their degrees in a reasonable amount of time.”

Deans Chris Clott (COBHA) and John Gambro (COE) were thrilled about the announcement.

“USF was one of the earliest online educators in Illinois. We are proud of our ability to offer top notch online graduate business programs that meet the needs of busy working people in Illinois and around the country,” said Clott.

Added Gambro, “The College of Education’s online programs are designed to provide students with exemplary learning experiences that provide them with the knowledge and skills necessary to be outstanding educators. Courses challenge and engage the students in the learning process and offer them an opportunity to interact with other professionals and exceptional faculty members. This ranking validates our efforts and indicates that our programs are meeting the needs of our students and the school districts in which they serve.”

The primary online graduate education program at USF is the M.S. in Teaching & Learning. This degree provides the opportunity for a school district or cohort of teachers to select a concentration of courses designed to meet specific areas of interest and academic needs. The program assists teachers and administrators to address the myriad of issues and needs which school communities face in a climate of evolving standards, curriculum change, school improvement and strategic planning efforts.

The University of St. Francis in Joliet serves 3,400 students nationwide, offering undergraduate, graduate and doctoral programs in arts and science, business, education, nursing, health care and social work. For information, call (800) 735-7500 or visit www.stfrancis.edu.