The ULA program is based around ten-day residencies held in January and July at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst campus.  Students often stay at Hotel UMass - the only unionized hotel of it's size in Western MA.  Students are responsible for the cost of housing.

During each residency, participants take two four-credit courses, one in the morning and one in the afternoon. The course syllabi, a list of required books, and links to electronic copies of readings are sent to students in advance of each residency. Students complete course final papers after returning home.

For all sessions, students should plan to arrive on Sunday afternoon.  A group meeting and dinner are held Sunday night, with classes beginning Monday morning and running ten days consecutively through the following Wednesday.  Guest lectures may occur in the evening during the residency.  There is another full-group dinner and celebration on Tuesday night before the final day of classes.  Students depart Wednesday afternoon.