Vayachalom - he had a dream

This dream was not of the same order as are ordinary dreams people dream.  However, at the same time it was not a true prophetic vision either.  This is why the Torah wrote at the end, "Yaakov awoke from his sleep." A true prophetic vision would be described by the Torah not as shenah, sleep, but either as bamarah elav etvada, or as bachalom adaber-bo as we know from BaMidbar 12:7.  Seeing that neither of these two expressions is evidence here, this downgrades the visionary element.