Freshman Reading Project: Welcome

Each year the Honors Program selects a text or texts to be read by all incoming first-year Honors students. The Freshman Reading Project (FRP) promotes community through the common experience of reading and discussing a thought-provoking text. We ask that all incoming students complete the reading assignment before arriving at Baylor in the fall.

This year there are two texts included in the FRP: one very brief selection (your choice) from The Great Tradition, edited by Richard M. Gamble, and The Pleasures of Reading in an Age of Distraction, by Baylor’s Distinguished Professor of Humanities in the Honors Program, Dr. Alan Jacobs. There is much worth reflecting upon in both of these books, and it is our hope that these volumes will be intellectual companions that you’ll read and enjoy throughout your time at Baylor and beyond.

As part of the FRP, new Honors Program students will attend the Honors Freshman Assembly in Miller Chapel on Wednesday, September 2, 6:30-8:30 p.m. This will be your introduction to the Honors Program, and we will begin the formal discussion of our texts. We will have the distinct pleasure of hearing from Dr. Jacobs as he addresses some themes brought forth in the reading selections.

At the end of the Assembly, students will attend a reception hosted by the Honors Student Advisor Council in the Bobo Spiritual Life Building next door. At that time, students will sign up for a small group discussion where they will conclude their reflection and discuss of the FRP texts. A brief, three-page essay will be due prior to the start of the small group discussion. The prompt will be announced at a later time.

Note: Successful completion of the FRP is required for continuation in the Honors Program.

Purchasing the Books

You can purchase both The Great Tradition and The Pleasures of Reading in an Age of Distraction at the Baylor University Bookstore, but the books can also be found at many other traditional and online retailers.

Richard M. Gamble, ed., The Great Tradition (ISI Books, 2007)

ISBN-13: 978-1-935191-56-8

Alan Jacobs, The Pleasures of Reading in an Age of Distraction (Oxford, 2011)

ISBN-13: 978-0-19-974749-8