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Westcliff University Offers First-of-Its-Kind For-Credit Online Intensive English Program for Students Worldwide

Students of All Educational Backgrounds Can Now Access Off-Campus English as an Additional Language Course Offering

IRVINE, Calif.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Today, Westcliff University – a trailblazing international higher education institution – officially announced its fully online REAL Intensive English Program. The REAL (Reimagining English as an Additional Language) program provides students the ability to earn credits while achieving English proficiency through fully remote courses, a first-of-its-kind university offering.

Westcliff created the REAL Intensive English Program to prepare international students for higher education through intensive coursework, taking students from beginner to upper-intermediate levels of English proficiency in very little time. With four levels of courses available, students who complete level three can enroll in undergraduate classes, and students who complete level four can enroll in graduate programs. In addition to supporting the transition of international students looking to obtain the required levels of proficiency to move toward higher education, the REAL program is also available to corporations and individuals looking to gain mastery of the language for personal development.

“We believe Westcliff University is the first university to offer a 100 percent online intensive English program that also carries academic credit. In our research, we only found one other university that even had a fully online intensive English program,” stated Julie Ciancio, PhD, MBA, dean of the College of Education and dean of international development at Westcliff University. “Because of the rigor and content of this program that focuses on college readiness skills, we have the capacity to offer academic credit to students for each level completed. I believe this speaks volumes about Westcliff and the passion for quality education it upholds.”

Compared to English as a foreign or second language (EFL/ESL), the REAL program emphasizes English as an additional language (EAL), acknowledging and celebrating the students’ existing home languages, cultures and possible multilingualism, while actively engaging students in their learning process. Launching after a six-month development phase and a test run in August 2020, the REAL program follows a flipped classroom model – where students are expected to attend classes by preparing in advance, so they can use classroom time to explore concepts with peers and instructors in a dynamic, interactive learning environment, immersing themselves into concepts through real life application. Westcliff also offers the REAL Bridge Program, which allows students to concurrently take up to two degree courses in order to get an even stronger jump-start on earning credits.

Westcliff’s College of Education faculty have on average over 20 years of experience teaching intensive English in over 18 countries. The school is a pioneer in English language teaching with its MA in Teaching English as a Second Language (MA TESOL) program among the first to offer live virtual class sessions in its online program from its inception almost 10 years ago. Faculty from the MA TESOL program and Westcliff’s bachelor’s in education program teach the REAL intensive English program, so students get the advantage of experienced teachers with at least a master’s degree and many with a doctorate.

“Westcliff has a wealth of experience in educating English language teachers through its College of Education programs, so teaching English through an outstanding, quality program of our own was a natural and easy step to take,” added Dr. Anthony M. Lee, president and CEO of Westcliff.

The program offers accelerated courses to maximize time and results, exceptionally affordable tuition, ongoing academic and tech support, a student-centered approach, as well as academic skills to ensure students’ learning success in higher education.

Students can apply online at

About Westcliff University: Westcliff University is an innovative international higher education institution with its finger on the pulse of the global business landscape and the needs of today’s employers. Founded in 1993 and based in Irvine, Calif., it offers bachelor’s, master’s and doctorate degrees spanning 21 areas of study including business, education, STEM – and most recently law – after its acquisition of Western State College of Law. As the oldest law school in Orange County, Calif., Western State College of Law at Westcliff University is an established institution with a 50-year track record of success and a reputation for producing both successful trial lawyers and more than 150+ graduates currently serving as judges and judicial officers. Westcliff is a California Public Benefit Corporation which certifies its dedication to operating in the best interests of its students and the surrounding community. Its programs focus on both the hard and soft skills needed to secure quality jobs in high-growth industries; it offers community and business engagement opportunities for the hands-on experience today’s students require; and it provides innovative and affordable programs live online and in classrooms across the globe. Visit and to learn more.

Editor’s Note: Media interested in speaking to expert staff, faculty and leadership of Westcliff University should email to facilitate interviews.