Staying safe in off-campus experiences

Please see our guidelines for staying safe in off-campus experiences for information relevant to students, faculty/staff, and campus partners.

Application for REAL classification for co‑curriculars

Based on national research, VCU now classifies experiential learning activities across four levels (see guiding principles for classification). You must apply and have your level approved by the REAL office before your co-curricular experience can be officially assigned a REAL classification and type.

Please note that co-curricular experiences must also proceed through the REAL Co-Curricular committee for initial review and then receive final approval from the REAL Curriculum Committee before they can be officially listed as REAL approved experiences.

Our guiding principles for REAL classification webpage can help you determine the appropriate REAL level for your co-curricular experience. Likewise, our REAL Co-Curricular worksheet will help you gather all the information you need before submitting your actual application. You may also want to review the evaluation rubric that evaluators will use in reviewing applications to help you in your planning, and the REAL Reflection Handbook as a tool for facilitating critical reflection.

Please note:

  • REAL level classifications are based on the threshold-level of engagement any student participating in the experience will have
  • REAL classifications will be reviewed on a three year cycle; however, departments can apply at any time to modify an experience’s REAL level and/or type

Submit a REAL Classification application for a co-curricular experience »

REAL Co-Curriculum Committee process and calendar

The REAL Co-Curriculum Committee is the first step towards receiving REAL designation for experiences beyond the classroom. The committee meets twice a month to review and approve applications before it moves to the REAL Curriculum Committee (faculty governance) for a final vote.

For more information about the REAL Curriculum Committee and the role it plays, see our REAL Curriculum Committee webpage.

REAL Co-Curricular application dueCo-Curricular Committee meeting schedule (initial review)Materials moved to REAL Curriculum CommitteeREAL Curriculum Committee meeting schedule (final vote)
Sept. 17Oct. 8Oct. 13Oct . 27
Oct. 8Oct . 22Oct . 27Nov. 10
Nov. 5Nov. 19Nov. 24Dec. 8


Those applying for a REAL service-learning type must also meet the requirements set forward by VCU's Service-Learning Office. Please refer to the Service-Learning website for information about designing a service-learning course. Service-Learning staff members are also available for individual consultation to help walk you through this process.

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