Explore here the changing curriculum in Amherst College’s first twenty years. With the exception of 1827-1829 and a few seniors electives, all courses were mandatory.

The odd spike of non-classical language courses and “other” courses in 1827 and 1828 may require some explication. For a brief period of time under the guidance of Heman Humphrey, Amherst offered a dual curriculum program.

It is worth noting that the classifications above have been imposed from 21st century perspective. There were no departments at early Amherst into which certain courses fell, texts were taught instead of holistic classes, and offerings varied on the constantly changing faculty. While the graphics above rely on clear delineations of different courses, another visualization examines their overlapping classifications, while a third examines the classes of 1838-39 courses in the taxonomy of the original libraries.