University of Oregon

What is a Freshman Seminar?

About Freshman Seminars

Freshman Seminars are small, engaging courses that introduce first-year students to thought-provoking, unique subjects in an instructor’s special area of interest. They are designed to promote faculty-student and student-student interaction, focusing on writing, communication, and critical thinking.

Benefits of a Freshman Seminar

  • Explore diverse topics and departments as a gateway to your major
  • Fulfill elective credit requirements for graduation
  • Enjoy a small classroom experience, with a max of 23 students
  • Meet other recent high school graduates in their first year in college
  • Receive individual support to develop writing, critical thinking, and communication skills
  • Participate in classroom discussions, field trips, and talks from guest lecturers
  • Learn from experienced faculty who enjoy working with first-years

Gateway to Majors

Not sure about your major yet?  Want to learn about an interesting topic in a different department than your own?  Your first year is the perfect time to explore your academic interests with a Freshman Seminar.  Along the way, you’ll develop skills that will help you be successful in any major on campus.  Faculty teach diverse subjects that they are passionate about and want to explore with you. Topics include travel writing, Japanese pop culture, sports poetry, anatomy and weight training, global health, and more.  Read about each 2014-2015 Freshman Seminar and instructor here.

Designed Just for You

Freshman Seminars are designed with first-year students in mind.  Professors plan these small classes specifically for incoming college students to help you improve your writing, presentation, and discussion skills. Our instructors want to get to know you and help you transition into your first year. Many students find that taking a small class gives them a chance to meet other freshmen, and is a helpful break from large lecture courses.

Don’t want to take our word for it?  Check out what students have to say about their experience with Freshman Seminars: Why a Freshman Seminar?


About / Why a Freshman Seminar / Eligibility & Enrollment /Freshman Seminars 2014-2015 / FAQ