The University of Massachusetts Amherst

2. How do I choose which RAP to join?

There are THREE BASIC questions you should ask yourself – IN ANY ORDER:

ONE: Determine which TYPE of RAP is best for you. RAPs are organized in “types” that determine the basic structure of the RAP (who can join and the courses included). Consider these questions:

  • Do you want to connect with a group of students around a common interest – academic and or personal? Gen Ed RAPs  are open to any/all first-year students.
  • Are you interested in having a course and living with students who are in the same school/college as your major/exploratory track? Connect RAPs are restricted to the students within the specific school/college - this includes declared majors as well as students in that particular Exploratory Track.
  • Is there a RAP offered for students in your major? Look at the list of Majors RAPs to see if your department offers one.
  • If you are an Honors student, would you like to live with other honors students? Consider an Honors RAP.

TWOFind courses that appeal to you. Explore the large selection of courses that are associated with the various RAPs. The core of the RAP is usually built around the Gen Ed course that is part of the RAP. You can review the full list of Gen Ed courses offered through RAP. (The Honors RAP courses are listed on the individual Honors RAP program pages.)

THREE: Determine if you have strong feelings about which area of campus you live during your first year. There are RAPs located in every first-year residence hall and many of the programs are offered in more than one location (for example; Investigating Politics RAP is offered in Central and Southwest residential areas - each with a specific course affiliated to it.) Explore the specific RAPs within the location you have identified. Refer to the RAPs by Location document.