FIG What?

One of the best ways to get started at the university is to join a First-Year Interest Group (FIG) for fall term. FIGs bring groups of 20 first year students together for a unique academic experience. FIG students take three courses together during fall term: two lecture courses and a 1-credit College Connections course which are all connected by an overarching theme. The two lecture courses’ credits count towards a degree, no matter which major is chosen.


These lecture classes may seem unrelated at first glance, but in the once a week College Connections class students will explore how the two are in fact deeply intertwined. The College Connections class is co-taught by an upper class mentor (FIG Assistant) and faculty member (often teaching one of the lecture classes), and serves as the driving force behind the FIG program's interdisciplinary nature.The College Connections course is a unique blend of the FIG content with faculty and student experience. The College Connections course operates both in and out of the classroom, and each FIG designs their own outside opportunities for the students.

Students engage in projects and assignments specific to each FIG, and may participate in informal out-of-class events such as hikes, dinner with the professor, or attending a concert or play. Additionally, the FIG Assistant (FA) is a current student at the UO, and not only do they facilitate peer to peer connections, but they offer extensive expertise and insight into how students can make the most of their time here.

FIGs are not required, but they are popular – each year nearly half of eligible freshmen will join!

Check out the 2017 FIG Guide for more info on FIGs!