5 Unique Honors College Classes to Take at UMass Amherst

The courses offered at the Commonwealth Honors College at UMass Amherst are very different from the 300-person lecture we often find on campus. These courses provide material on unique topics, hands-on learning and an experience that goes beyond fulfilling requirements. Here are five that we think you should consider signing up for:

1. Honors 221H: The Springfield Renaissance: Art and the City

This class includes going on about five field trips to the city of Springfield to explore art around the city. When I took the class, we got a sneak peek of the new museum dedicated to Dr. Seuss, a Springfield native, which is set to open on June 3. The class is the epitome of hands-on learning because instead of sitting in a classroom and discussing art, students have the opportunity to see the different types of art forms themselves.

2. Honors 391AH: Art Investigations 

This course meets once a week and takes students all over campus to view the various art galleries the university offers. UMass has multiple galleries with artists from Western Massachusetts, students of the university and even artists from places that do not surround Amherst. This class gives another opportunity to see art up close.

3. Psych 201H: What Makes Us Human

For those interested in psychology, Psych 201H focuses on human beings and how we have become so advanced. This course poses the question about what makes us uniquely human, and how those elements came to be so prevalent in human lives. According to the Honors College Course Guide, "This course examines psychological and neuroscientific bases of human mind and behavior that are uniquely related to human culture and experience."

3. Nutrition 130H: Nutrition for a Healthy Lifestyle

Living a healthy life is heavily based on practicing good nutrition habits, and this course could be used very much beyond the classroom. Nutrition for a Healthy Lifestyle looks into the relationship between different types of food and risk of chronic diseases, which every person should be aware of as they develop healthy eating habits. A course like this one is beneficial for both our academic requirements and our personal lifestyles.

4. History 355H: Carribean History

If you're an Honors College student and are looking for a general education class that allows students older than freshman to sign up — because many gen ed honors courses are limited to freshman — this course is one to check out. Sophomores, juniors and seniors can take this history course that focuses on a part of the world that many only know for its beautiful weather and tropical beaches. This course looks at the social, economic and political history of places such as Cuba, Haiti, and Jamaica.

5. Anthropology 102H: Archaeology & Prehistory

Archaeology is a field of study that may sometimes get lost among more popular majors or classes. However, the work that archaeologists do is crucial to understanding the history of earth. This class digs deep into how individuals in this profession take small artifacts they find in their work and use them to tell us about the world we live in.

Will you try any of these classes, Collegiettes? 

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