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Upper School Academics

Harpeth Hall’s upper school curriculum aligns directly with our mission: we offer a strong foundation in the sciences, humanities, and arts that fosters creative and critical thinking, promotes global perspectives, and sparks life-long learning. Our students learn to lead confidently both in the classroom and beyond it. 

The academic culture in the Hortense Bigelow Ingram Upper School is characterized by intellectual vitality and joy. We encourage girls to take academic risks that equate with their passions and interests and to create a balanced schedule that is tailored to their individual needs. At the heart of each academic experience is our deep understanding of how girls learn best. 

Our teachers provide students with collaborative and interdisciplinary opportunities that ask girls to relate to each other and to the world around them. Our 80-minute blocks and rotating schedule allow for innovative teaching and deep exploration of subject matter. Students have the opportunity to reach their highest potential through a wide-ranging curriculum that offers AP and Honors courses in every discipline, and electives ranging from Engineering and Computer Science to Film Studies and Creative Writing. Each student is paired with an advisor who helps her select courses and create a flexible four-year academic plan that aligns with her interests and promotes wellbeing.
As part of our deep commitment to experiential learning, we ensure that every girl has the opportunity to pursue independent research, whether through our premier four-year Winterim program, our Honors STEM research course in partnership with Vanderbilt University, or our Global Scholars program. These experiences provide our students with the confidence to pursue new challenges and opportunities upon graduation and to see themselves as changemakers. 
We encourage students to involve themselves in our rich co-curricular and extra-curricular offerings. Purposely designed Community Time each day complements our academic schedule by providing students the opportunity to gather together in student-led clubs and organizations, hear from dynamic speakers, meet in advisory, connect with friends or meet one-on-one with teachers. With over 30 student-led clubs in the upper school, including our upper school publications, student government, and ambassador programs, our students daily have the opportunity to contribute to our community, to celebrate their voices and talents, and to grow as leaders. 

Strong student-teacher relationships that foster belonging and spark creativity are central to the learning experience in our upper school: our students feel seen, known, and cared for by our faculty and staff. Stop by any classroom during a visit to campus, and you will witness the inspiring connection between teachers and students that informs our vibrant learning community.



student produced publications: Logos, Hallmarks, and Milestones


of Harpeth Hall graduates attend universities or colleges


of students participate in STEM education


AP and honors courses offered


Student leadership positions in the Upper School


million offered in merit scholarships to the Class of 2021

Interdisciplinary  Learning