The future might be shifting and uncertain, but we’ll make sure you leave here ready. You’ll know who you are and what you value. You’ll be tested and confident. You’ll be able to see and solve problems as they arise.

At Hobart and William Smith, we require just one course – the first year seminar. Then we give you the freedom to work with your faculty advisor to design an academic plan that addresses 8 broad goals that can be reached in the context of many different programs of study and course.

The 8 goals address critical thinking, communication, quantitative reasoning, scientific inquiry, the artistic process, social inequalities, cultural difference, and ethical judgment.

Over the course of your studies, you’ll develop the ability to examine and evaluate facts and phenomena, discern patterns and arguments, and understand and form connections between ideas, issues, and values.


Course Catalogue

You can achieve all 8 goals by taking a variety of courses of your choosing

Learn more about First Year Seminars that introduce students to college-level coursework. Seminar topics vary each year, as do the professors who teach them.

Learn about our unique Learning Communities that connect the First Year Seminar with a common residence hall experience.

Learn more about the 8 Goals

Learn more about Academic Awards and Fellowships