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University of Massachusetts-Amherst

181 Presidents Drive, Amherst, MA 1003, USA

US ranking
position: 64
Tuition & fees per year: $17,600
Acceptance rate: 66.00%
Median alumni salary: $48,713
Avg. SAT and ACT: 1355 SAT, 31 ACT
Entrance difficulty: N/A

Courtesy of University of Massachusetts-Amherst

What is the history of University of Massachusetts-Amherst?

The University of Massachusetts-Amherst was founded in 1863 as the Massachusetts Agricultural College under the Federal Morrill Land-Grant Colleges Act. Initially, the college focused on providing instruction in agricultural, mechanical, and military arts to Massachusetts citizens. Over time, the curriculum expanded to include a broader range of subjects such as humanities, social sciences, and business.

In 1931, the college was renamed Massachusetts State College and became a university in 1947. The institution was later renamed the University of Massachusetts-Amherst in 1991 to reflect its status as the flagship campus of the University of Massachusetts system. The university's leadership structure has evolved over the years, with the current title "President of the University of Massachusetts" referring to the chief executive of the entire five-campus system.

Today, the University of Massachusetts-Amherst is organized into nine schools and colleges, offering 109 undergraduate, 77 master's, and 48 doctoral programs. The university has an annual enrollment of over 32,000 students and approximately 1,900 faculty members. It is classified among "R1: Doctoral Universities – Very high research activity" and spent $211 million on research and development in 2018.

The university's 21 varsity athletic teams, known as the Minutemen and Minutewomen, compete in NCAA Division I. The University of Massachusetts-Amherst is a member of the Atlantic 10 Conference, while its ice hockey team participates in Hockey East and its football team competes as an FBS independent school.

Significant milestones in the university's history include the creation of the Stonewall Center in 1985, the completion of the Mullins Center in 1993, and the establishment of the Silvio O. Conte Center for Polymer Research in 1996. The university has also been the subject of various commissions and reorganizations, such as the Saxon Commission in 1989, which examined its future role, governance, and financing. In 1990, graduate students unionized, and in 1991, legislation established a single president and board of trustees for the five-campus University of Massachusetts system.

The University of Massachusetts-Amherst is a major research university with a strong emphasis on sustainability and environmentalism. It is a member of the Five College Consortium, which includes four other colleges in the Pioneer Valley: Amherst College, Smith College, Mount Holyoke College, and Hampshire College. The university is also home to the Isenberg School of Management, consistently ranked among the top business schools in the country.

In recent years, the University of Massachusetts-Amherst has experienced significant expansion and renovation, adding new academic buildings, residence halls, and athletic facilities. The university has also invested in sustainability initiatives such as solar power and green building design, demonstrating its commitment to providing a high-quality education while promoting environmental stewardship and social responsibility.

What are the faculties and departments at University of Massachusetts-Amherst?

The University of Massachusetts-Amherst boasts a diverse range of academic programs across its 12 schools and colleges, catering to the needs of undergraduate and graduate students alike. One of these colleges is the College of Humanities & Fine Arts, which comprises 14 academic departments and 12 research centers and interdisciplinary programs. This college allows students to learn from esteemed scholars, thinkers, and artists in their respective fields.

Another notable college at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst is the College of Natural Sciences, which brings together life, environmental, computational, and physical sciences, as well as mathematics. This college is known for its cutting-edge research, top-ranked academic programs, and distinguished faculty members. The Robert and Donna Manning College of Information & Computer Sciences is also internationally recognized for its research activities and offers one of the most competitive graduate programs in the nation.

The Elaine Marieb College of Nursing, ranked among the top 25 in the United States by U.S. News & World Report, is dedicated to developing essential nurse educators and researchers who will help shape the future of nursing innovation. Meanwhile, the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences bridges the gap between sciences and humanities, offering programs in anthropology, economics, political science, psychology, and sociology.

The Isenberg School of Management provides undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral programs in various fields, including accounting, finance, management, marketing, and operations and information management. The School of Public Health and Health Sciences offers programs in public health, kinesiology, nutrition, and communication disorders at both undergraduate and graduate levels. Additionally, the School of Education provides programs in education, teacher licensure, and educational leadership for undergraduate and graduate students.

The College of Engineering at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst offers a variety of undergraduate and graduate programs in chemical, civil, computer, electrical, environmental, industrial, and mechanical engineering.

What is the location of University of Massachusetts-Amherst?

The University of Massachusetts-Amherst is situated in the Northeast region of the United States, specifically in the city of Amherst, Massachusetts. The campus can be found at 120 Tillson Farm Road, with the ZIP Code 01003. It is approximately 10 miles away from the center of Amherst, making it easily accessible for students. The institution is the flagship campus of the University of Massachusetts system and holds the distinction of being the oldest and largest campus within the system.

For those traveling to the University of Massachusetts-Amherst, the nearest airport is Bradley International. The campus is also well-connected by public bus, providing convenient transportation options for students.

What is the mission and vision of University of Massachusetts-Amherst?

The University of Massachusetts-Amherst strives to offer an affordable and accessible education of high quality while conducting research and public service programs that benefit the people of the Commonwealth, the nation, and the world. The institution aims to facilitate student learning and development, maximizing academic and personal success. It seeks to create a positive, inclusive, and challenging learning environment that encourages self-motivation, fosters leadership development, and promotes intellectual, physical, and emotional well-being.

The Student Affairs and Campus Life department at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst is dedicated to excellence, innovation, and social justice. In collaboration with campus colleagues, the department contributes to students' successful educational experiences, supports an actively engaged and diverse student body, and challenges them to become leaders in their community and the world. The Academic Success Unit provides student-athletes with the necessary support to excel in the classroom, community, and competition, offering services and resources that empower, motivate, and propel them toward graduation.

The University of Massachusetts-Amherst values a student-centered community where collaboration thrives in the spirit of teamwork, learning, and creativity. Communication is respectful, open, and continuous, and integrity guides their sense of honesty, fairness, and compassion. Diversity and inclusion are embedded in their work, and innovative processes lead to the advancement of knowledge, personal growth, and sustainable change. Excellence is achieved through best practices, knowledge, and demonstrated expertise. Ultimately, the University of Massachusetts-Amherst is dedicated to providing a comprehensive and enriching educational experience that prepares students for success in their personal and professional lives.

What is the accreditation of University of Massachusetts-Amherst?

The University of Massachusetts-Amherst is accredited regionally by the New England Commission of Higher Education (NECHE), which ensures that the institution meets specific standards of quality and academic rigor. This accreditation is crucial for students who may want to transfer credits to another institution or pursue post-graduate programs. In 2018, the university underwent a comprehensive accreditation review, after which NECHE decided to continue its accreditation for a ten-year period.

In addition to regional accreditation, the University of Massachusetts-Amherst holds specialized accreditations for certain programs, such as nursing, education, psychology, and engineering. These specialized accreditations are granted by various organizations and further attest to the quality of the university's offerings. Moreover, the institution has accredited programs in diverse fields like art, music, nutrition and dietetics, and landscape architecture, providing prospective students with a wide range of options to choose from.

University of Massachusetts-Amherst Rankings

See where this school lands in our other Rankings to get a bigger picture of the institution's offerings.

27 Most Popular Colleges in Massachusetts in 2023-2024

29 Best Colleges in the Northeast in 2023-2024 US

46 Best Value Colleges in Massachusetts in 2023-2024

64 Best Colleges in 2023-2024

137 Most Popular Colleges in the Northeast in 2023-2024 US

227 Best Value Colleges in the Northeast in 2023-2024 US

513 Most Popular Colleges in 2023-2024

863 Best Value Colleges in 2023-2024


University of Massachusetts-Amherst Profile - Basic Information

Name of the institution

University of Massachusetts-Amherst

Level of institution

Four or more years

Granulation by control over the institution (public/private)


School type


Setting type

Suburb: Large

Calendar system


Foundation year


Institution size category

20,000 and above

Main student body


Institutional Category

Degree - granting, primarily baccalaureate or above

University of Massachusetts-Amherst Programs and Degrees

iconMaster's degree
iconAssociate's degree
iconBachelor's degree
iconCertificate of less than 1 year
iconPostbaccalaureate certificate
iconPost-master's certificate
iconDoctor's degree - research/scholarship
iconDoctor's degree - professional practice
iconOther degree
iconCertificate of at least 2 years, but less than 4 years
iconCertificate of at least 1 year, but less than 2 years
iconDoctor's degree - other

Alumni Salary for University of Massachusetts-Amherst Degrees


Avg. salary

Agricultural/Animal/Plant/Veterinary Science and Related Fields


Architecture and Related Services


Area, Ethnic, Cultural, Gender, and Group Studies


Biological and Biomedical Sciences


Business, Management, Marketing, and Related Support Services


Communication, Journalism, and Related Programs


Computer and Information Sciences and Support Services


Construction Trades






English Language and Literature/Letters


Foreign Languages, Literatures, and Linguistics


Health Professions and Related Programs




Legal Professions and Studies


Liberal Arts and Sciences, General Studies and Humanities


Mathematics and Statistics


Multi/Interdisciplinary Studies


Natural Resources and Conservation


Parks, Recreation, Leisure, Fitness, and Kinesiology


Philosophy and Religious Studies


Physical Sciences




Social Sciences


Visual and Performing Arts