A Residential Learning Community (RLC) is a group of students intentionally living together on campus who have a shared interest in an academic, identity, or interest theme. We provide RLC options for all these aspects: academic, identity, and interest.  

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Do I need to live on campus to participate in a Residential Learning Community?

Yes. Our Residential Learning Communities are only available for students living within Housing & Residence Life. 

Can I select my roommate in an RLC?

Yes, you can select your roommate. You will both need to rank the same learning community and live in the same community to be roommates. More information about roommate pairing and matching will be shared with all students in May 2023.  

Does it cost more to be part of an RLC?

No. It does not cost extra to be a part of a Residential Learning Community. The only cost element related to an RLC is the cost of your room & board on campus. 

If I am a first-year student living on campus, do I need to be part of an RLC?

No. There is a first year live on requirement, though living in a Residential Learning Community is completely optional.

Do upper-level students get involved in RLCs?

Yes, it is also optional for upper-level students to choose an RLC. For more information on applying to upper-level RLCs, please visit the Application Process page. 

Do I need to be a certain major in order to join an Academic RLC?

It depends. Each Academic Residential Learning Community has their own requirements to live within the RLC. For more information on RLC requirements, please see each RLC on their respected first-year or upper-level page. 

Do I need to take a connected course as part of my RLC experience?

For First-Year students, all of the Academic RLCs have a required connected course that students must enroll in and complete. However, in many cases, these are courses that students in that college or school would already be taking as part of their Mason Core curriculum. Interest RLCs do not have any course requirements but there may be opportunities to participate in optional RLC-related courses.   

In addition, some Upper-Level RLCs have a required connected course and you can learn more about those RLCs on the Upper-Level RLCs page. 

How do I apply for a Residential Learning Community?

The Residential Learning Community application is embedded within the Housing Application, which you can find in the StarRez Housing Portal.  

All student will only be able to apply to ONE Residential Learning Community.

What is a campus partner?

A campus partner is a faculty or staff member on George Mason campus meets regularly with the students and staff of their residential learning community. Campus partners guide the learning component of the community, may teach the course in common, and help connect students to various resources across campus.

If I accept my Upper-Level Residential Learning Community offer will I be guaranteed a spot in that LC?

 Accepting an RLC offer does not guarantee placement in an RLC. Once an offer is accepted, you will be confirmed in the RLC based on spaces available at the time of the offer acceptance. If no spaces remain in the RLC at the time of the offer acceptance, you will be notified via your Mason email and given information about the general housing process.

How will I be registered to my RLC course?

If you are part of an Academic RLC, then you will be automatically registered to one of your RLC’s required courses by the registrar’s office.

If you are part of an Identity or Interest RLC that has an optional course, you have the option to register for one of your RLC’s connected courses, in the same way as you would register for any other course from your program.