University Housing at Illinois University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Allen Hall/Unit One: A creative community in a small college environment

This page is intended to answer questions about the Unit One/Allen Hall housing option. If you are interested in living in Allen Hall and have further questions, please see supplemental information on our site, call, write, or email.

Introduction to Allen Hall and the Unit One Program

Allen Hall is an undergraduate residence hall on the Urbana-Champaign campus of the University of Illinois. Unit One is a living-learning community made up of all Allen Hall residents. The Unit One program provides residents of Allen Hall with a creative and intellectually stimulating atmosphere in a lively and engaging community. In a sense, Unit One provides a small-college atmosphere in a big campus setting.

Students often perceive university education as a maze which they must "get through." At Unit One, we encourage students to participate actively in defining and constructing their education. Residents of Allen Hall can create, design, and direct almost all aspects of the Unit One program. Staff at Unit One are especially responsive to helping students put their ideas into action.

Allen Hall has a distinctive personality. Residents characterize it as a friendly, community-oriented hall that is forward-thinking, and highly accepting of diversity among students. Unit One/Allen Hall programs, many of which deal with contemporary political and social issues, add dimensions of controversy, activism, and social awareness to students' lives as an integral part of the educational goals of the program. Our arts facilities and courses allow all students, regardless of major, to explore their creativity.

Read what students have to say about living in Unit One/Allen Hall.

Unit One Courses

  • For-credit University courses offered on-site
  • Small seminar-like classes that tend to more interactive and engaging than courses held elsewhere
  • Some fulfill General Education requirements
  • Some are unique to Unit One
  • Some make use of our in-house arts facilities
  • Unit One students get priority in registering for these classes 
  • More about Unit One courses in Allen Hall

Guest-in-Residence program

  • Writers, artists, inventors, performers, scholars, journalists, filmmakers, and other interesting people live in a guest apartment in Allen Hall for a week.
  • Guests conduct workshops, performances, lectures, and discussions with Allen Hall students.
  • Many guests have chosen paths which are unusual, are passionate about their work and lives, and are fun, interesting people.
  • Past Guests
  • Current Guests

Special Programs

  • Music Lessons - free individual instruction at any level and of any style of music 
  • Student Groups - over 20 student-led groups based in Allen Hall
  • Three student Program Advisors who help students put on their own events
  • Performances, open mics, discussions, workshops, field trips, volunteer opportunities, recitals
  • PizzaFM - freeform, noncommercial, college radio station streaming online from Allen Hall, Unit One students get priority in becoming DJs 
  • Allenotes - weekly calendar of events in Allen Hall

Special Resources and Facilities of Unit One

  • Studios: Photography, Ceramics, Electronic Music, Digital Video Editing
  • Music Practice Rooms: Soundproof with pianos
  • Classrooms: Seminar rooms with 24 hour access for studying and meeting
  • Library: In-hall for study, references, & pleasure
  • Computer Lab: PCs, Macs, scanner, and laser printers
  • Main Lounge and South Rec Room: large spaces with sound system and projectors for performances, lectures, workshops

Selecting Allen Hall / Unit One

STRATEGY for Applying to Unit One

Frequently Asked Questions


Unit One/Allen Hall is one of several Living/Learning Communities
in the University Residence Halls
of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

At home at Illinois

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