REAL FAQs

The information included on this page is for courses with the prefix EEND, REAL, RECT, or REND offered through the Regional Educational Academy for Leadership (REAL) in the College of Education. Please visit the College of Education for information on undergraduate and graduate programs in education.

General Information - Courses and Registration

Please visit stfrancis.edu/academics/accreditations for current a complete list of accreditations and authorizations for the University of St. Francis and programs offered through the College of Education.

Candidates enrolled in College of Education program courses are expected to demonstrate various computer and digital literacy competencies in order to be successful in online/blended courses.  Candidates identifying any potential gaps in computer/digital skills may utilize the support information found at LearnItNow or by contacting the Department of Academic Technology.

The following list identify skills for candidates’ appropriate and responsible use of existing and emerging technology tools for communication, management, research, problem solving and decision making.  Courses within each program may require all or some of the listed computer and digital information literacy skills. 

Candidates enrolled in College of Education Graduate Programs are expected to demonstrate competencies in the following computer and digital information literacy skills.

  1. Download, attach, and store files using web-based technologies (e.g., Canvas learning management system, Google Drive, University email, and various web pages).
  2. Create, format, and save written works with word processors (e.g., Microsoft Word and Pages, Google Docs).
  3. Send messages using University email and the Canvas Inbox.
  4. Post responses to discussion topics and the perspectives of peers within a discussion forum.
  5. Generate charts, organize tabular data, and perform calculations with spreadsheets. 
  6. Create multimedia presentations (i.e., PowerPoint, Infographics, Prezi, and video and audio podcasts and demonstrations) and compress their embedded video and audio assets to reduce file sizes.
  7. Access, retrieve, interpret, evaluate, and synthesize information presented through a variety of electronic resources (i.e. e-journals, webpages).
  8. Use social media (e.g., Twitter, Blogs, You Tube) to participate in an informed and engaged community by contributing to the active generation and shaping of discourse and ideas.
  9. Use web meeting software to pose aural and written questions, deliver a presentation with and without a video presence, and provide feedback to presenters.
  10. Collaborate through collaboration software (e.g., Google Sites, Google Docs, Microsoft Teams) to generate scholarly works.

REAL offers flexible and accessible programming with a registration process that is easy to complete. The following information is applicable to courses with prefix EEND, REAL, RECT, and REND.

  • Educators can view course titles by category/topic on our REAL Courses page.
  • Registration links are accessible within each category/topic folder (there may be times when only one semester is open for registration as determined by the academic calendar and other university policies).
  • Selecting the general category/topic registration link will open a preview of all courses within the category/topic currently accepting enrollment. Clicking on the course will open the corresponding registration and payment form.
  • No university application, transcripts, or test scores are required to register for courses taken as a special (non-degree seeking) graduate student through REAL.
  • Payment in full is required at the time of registration.
  • Registration closes one week prior to scheduled course start date (may be sooner if course reaches capacity).

Degree-seeking candidates and those enrolling in focused programs should register online through their MyUSF Student Account.

Sample syllabi for REAL courses can also be viewed by selecting the course title in various topic folders at All REAL Courses. Some content is protected in the public/sample version such as instructor information, schedule, policies, etc. Details of this nature are included on the official syllabus within the online course environment for those who enroll.

  • Textbooks and course materials are not included in the price of tuition.
  • Current semester specials can be found at stfrancis.edu/real/specials.
  • Partnership course and cohort rates may be confirmed by contacting REAL at real@stfrancis.edu
  • Full payment of course tuition is required during the registration process. Payment may be made via credit card (processing fee applies) or electronic check through our secure registration site.
  • Student accounts may reflect a credit balance until semester tuition bills are posted (mid-December for Spring, mid-May for Summer, and late July for Fall).

*Tuition subject to university increases.

Courses offered through REAL are not eligible for federal financial assistance. Federal financial assistance like the Federal Direct Loan program can only be used for degree-seeking programs.

You can visit us in Donovan Hall (C-201) on the main campus in Joliet.

Mailing Address:
REAL at the University of St. Francis
500 Wilcox Street, C201
Joliet, IL 60435

Online courses are structured to include discussions and assignments requiring active participation. Online courses are not self-paced. Candidates are expected to actively participate for the duration of the course. Candidates who are not able to commit to the full range of course dates should consider enrolling in an alternate semester.

Online courses in the College of Education, are structured and presented in a highly interactive instructional environment where candidates learn from the instructor, course materials, and one another. In the online environment, each candidate must respond to discussion questions posted by the instructor based upon reading assignments and course content, post responses to the instructor’s questions, and provide timely feedback to other candidates. Direct interaction with the instructor and other candidates in the course IS mandated. New course materials appear in each module. Candidates are expected to review all materials for optimal participation and learning. Assignments are embedded within each course, and the instructor provides feedback using assignment-specific rubrics and qualitative comments. The model for interaction within the online environment is instructor-candidate, candidate-instructor, and candidate-candidate.

When do classes meet online? While candidates are not expected to log in at a specific date and time, there are online discussions, assignments, and assessments that are due each week. It is recommended that candidates log in the first day of the course to establish attendance, get a sense of the online environment, and view course expectations.

How many assignments/topics are required to be posted and how often? Online courses typically consist of at least eight modules with readings and assignments in each. Most online courses require a minimum of three formative assessments and one summative.

How often do candidates need to read and post comments? Every week candidates are given several chapters or articles to read. Minimally, instructors will expect candidates to respond to one or more discussion questions based on these readings (usually by midweek) and then thoughtfully respond to other candidates’ posts.

What is the interaction between candidates? Candidates are expected to post thoughtful feedback to other candidates’ posts each week. Many online courses provide candidates the opportunity to collaborate electronically or in a virtual environment.

What is the interaction between candidates and the online instructor? Online course work at the University of St. Francis is conducted in a lively and robust learning environment with frequent interaction between the candidate and the instructor each week. At a minimum, the instructor will pose a discussion question to which the candidate will respond; that response will then generate feedback from the instructor.

YES! Candidates may roll up to 18 hours of graduate credit previously earned through REAL at the University of St. Francis (prefixes EEND, REAL, REND) into the M.S. Reading and M.S. Teaching and Learning programs.

For additional information, please contact:

Maggie Stevenson, Graduate Admissions Counselor
mstevenson@stfrancis.edu
815-740-3389

Requirements for adding endorsements to a valid Illinois Educator License are subject to ISBE updates and revisions to legislation. Please refer to ISBE for details regarding endorsement areas of interest. Additional assistance may be available through your local Regional Office of Education.

  • Courses outlined at stfrancis.edu/real/endorsements are developed and updated based upon ISBE’s standards for the respective endorsement and are on file with the Illinois State Board of Education.
  • Educators may not need to take all courses as offered. If similar courses were completed through other institutions, ISBE will evaluate transcripts during the application and review process. As such, College of Education administrators and staff are not authorized to evaluate coursework from other institutions

For Enrolled Candidates

For New Candidates: If you have not previously taken courses at the university, please note that it may take 3-5 business days for a MyUSF student account to be created. You should expect to receive a notification (via the email provided with your registration) that will include information required to access your account. If you do not receive a notification within five (5) business days, please check spam/junk folders as communication is occasionally rerouted due to school or personal security settings.

For New and Returning Candidates: If you did not receive your password OR no longer have your login credentials, you can request a reset HERE by providing your user name (typically lowercase first and last name: e.g. johnsmith).

If the reset attempt is unsuccessful, please contact USF Technical Support at techsupport@stfrancis.edu or 815-768-8324.

The drop process for courses in which you are currently enrolled must be completed within the drop window using our online self-service option – drop requests via phone or email are not accepted. Candidates may request to drop (or withdraw as appropriate) courses with the prefix EEND, REAL, RECT, and REND. 

REAL Course Drop Request

REAL candidates completing courses toward the following endorsements will need to apply through ELIS to have the endorsement added to their valid Illinois PEL : Bilingual Education or ESL**, Director of Special Education, Driver Education, Health Education, LBSI (valid at the grade level), Reading Teacher, and Technology Specialist. 

Visit ISBE to view current requirements by endorsement.

**Additional documentation required for Bilingual Education and ESL

  • Educators seeking a Bilingual Education endorsement are required to independently complete 100 clock hours (or three months teaching experience) in a bilingual setting.  
  • Educators seeking an ESL endorsement are required to independently complete 100 clock hours (or three months teaching experience) in a bilingual or ESL setting.
  • A tracking log must be retained, along with administrator verification, of all hours or teaching experiences in the appropriate setting.
  • The log and administrator verification will be required when applying to add the endorsement through ELIS and may be requested during an audit of educator records.
  • Completed 100 hour log and administrative verification documents may be scanned and submitted to ISBE at licensure@isbe.net using the subject line: IEIN # ESL Log and Letter (ex. 1234567 ESL Log and Letter)

Educators enrolled in USF degree-seeking or focused programs: DO NOT APPLY THROUGH ELIS. Please work directly with your respective program advisor and the university’s Licensure Officer to have the endorsement added to your PEL when all requirements are met. 

The completed 100 hour log and administrative verification  documents should be sent to ISBE at the time you apply to have the endorsement added to your license. Please scan and submit to ISBE at licensure@isbe.net using the subject line: IEIN # ESL Log and Letter (ex. 1234567 ESL Log and Letter)

Yes! Visit Learn It Now for a variety of resources to help you become familiar with MyUSF, Canvas, and more! 

There are a couple of ways to find required textbooks or other materials:

  1. In your MyUSF student account under For Students, Order Your Books, or
  2. USF Barnes and Noble Bookstore online

Visit the Registrar’s Office Transcript Request page to submit your request online.

Courses are listed in your MyUSF student account under My Student Class Schedule at the top of the page. You may need to change the semester from the default view depending on the semester you wish to review.

Additional Questions?