Residential Academic Programs (RAPs)

CHC students

Residential Academic Programs

Commonwealth Honors College offers several Honors Residential Academic Programs (RAPs), which enable first-year Honors College students the opportunity to live and take classes together.  

Honors RAPS are opportunities to live in the Commonwealth Honors College Residential Community, with students enrolled in one or two of your classes. Designed to ease your transition to college, these programs enable you to build relationships with others both socially and academically.

The courses selected as part of these programs assist you in meeting your general education and Honors requirements. During the first semester, you'll take one or two courses with other Honors College students living on your floor.  

Check the RAP website for important dates and specific steps for how to join a RAP.


Honors RAPs Benefits  

 Share your living and learning experience with other high-achieving students in your major.  

 Experience a variety of opportunities that will help you make a successful transition to the academic and social life at UMass Amherst. 

 Develop meaningful and lasting relationships by working closely with RAP faculty members.  

 Explore academic and/or professional opportunities related to your interests and goals. 

 Learn how to build a supportive community, form study groups and work cooperatively with peers who share similar interests and are in classes with you. 

 Experience lively discussions in your RAP courses because you know your classmates so well.    


Living and Learning Community 

Each of the Honors RAPs is located within one of the two first-year residence halls in the Commonwealth Honors College Residential Community (CHCRC). 



 You  must enroll in all of the Honors RAP classes associated with your chosen RAP. 

 Since there is a housing component, you are only eligible to sign up for one RAP. 

 If the scheduling of a course needed to fulfill a major requirement conflicts with the scheduling of a RAP course, major requirements will take precedence, and your RAP will need to be dropped.

Honors RAPs Options

Contemporary Topics Honors RAPs are designed for Honors College students in any major.   

Honors College students admitted to Isenberg School of Management are eligible to join the Isenberg Honors RAP.  

Honors College students admitted to the College of Engineering are eligible to join the Engineering Honors RAP.

BioTAP is an invitation-only RAP for first-year Honors College students who are admitted as biological science majors. 


Campus RAPs 

The University offers other First-Year RAPs, open to all University students, in most residential areas. For more information and to see the university's full RAP selection, refer to the UMass RAP website

Questions about Honors RAPs?

Most questions about RAPs can be answered on either the RAP "How to Join" or "FAQ page". If you find that you have additional questions, then you should send them to a RAP staff member using the RAP Contact Form.