Emerging Scholars First Year Seminar: Honors 191EH. This fulfills the mandatory 1-credit seminar required of all first year students. Prof. Alexandrina Deschamps.

This seminar is designed to ensure that students begin their tenure at UMass Amherst by understanding the process and strategies that will be invaluable in helping them maximize their potential. The central aim is to foster critical reading and thinking, social and cultural skills, questioning skills, and comprehension in making sense of the educational institution, their career goals and their quality of life. Students will have the opportunity to:

  • work collaboratively
  • meet with a cross section of faculty and staff and understand the value of advising, networking and mentoring
  • engage in dialogue and writing across their different similarities as well connecting to their courses
  • begin using the library resources and learning research skills
  • understand how the Commonwealth Honors College can be beneficial to them


"Intro to Sociology"- Sociology 110H (Gen Ed SBU): This 4-credit General Education course is designed as an introduction to the discipline of sociology for honors students. Sociology is the scientific study of the social behaviors of people, groups, and societies. Sociologists typically study human social aggregations of all kinds, including both micro level (e.g., face-to-face social interaction and family dynamics) and macro level (e.g., multi-national corporations, governments, and population dynamics) forms of social phenomena. Students in this course will be exposed to introductory materials spanning an array of sociological topics (including culture, social networks, family, organizations, and demography, to name a few) through the use of in-class lectures, introductory and advanced level readings, discussion, assignments, and supporting films. 


"College Writing"- English Writing 112H (Gen Ed CW), 3 credits. There will be a designated section of this course for the students in the Emerging Scholars RAP. This is a required UMass Amherst course..


A designated section of “Ideas that Change the World” – Honors 201H: (Gen Ed I), 4 credits, which also fulfills the mandatory gen ed for first-year students.The course explores dilemmas addressed by the sciences, the arts, and the humanities. In each of these broad areas, the course focuses on questions about human nature, the sources of our knowledge, and the application of that knowledge to the solving of perennial and contemporary problems. The semester begins with inquiries into the nature of truth, of particular relevance in our era of debates over “alternative facts.” Then the course considers ongoing problems of violence, injustice, and environmental crisis. Our inquiries will establish a dialogue between past and present as we examine historical figures such as W.E.B. Du Bois, Rachel Carson, along with present-day innovators such as Temple Grandin and the Dalai Lama.

For more details on the course see:



A Global Connections Seminar. In this interdisciplinary, discussion-based seminar, students will examine innovative thinkers, groundbreaking ideas, and the strategies that transform these ideas into effective actions.

Emerging Scholars RAP