Upper School

Continuing on the path to college and beyond


As a leading college preparatory school for girls, Linden Hall is committed to the highest degree of academic achievement. With small class size, a diverse student body, and an all-girl focus, Linden Hall delivers an environment where students experience not just individual attention but an individualized course of academic study with purposeful guidance.

The Upper School (grades 9 - 12) curriculum focuses on preparing young women to succeed in college and beyond. The academic excellence achieved by Linden Hall’s Upper School students is reflected in their outstanding SAT and Advanced Placement (AP) Exam scores. The 5-year average (2011-2016) AP exam score of a Linden Hall student is 4.6, far outpacing the national average of 2.8. In fact, 98% of students who took the AP Exams in 2015 earned a 3, 4, or 5.

Upper School Curriculum

Ninth Grade

Rising ninth grade students should plan on the following course of study:
  • English: Literature and Language OR Honors Humanities (English), by invitation only.
  • Mathematics: Usually Geometry. Students advance in their mathematics coursework based upon departmental recommendations; new students are placed via application recommendation and testing.
  • History: World History OR Honors Humanities (History), by invitation only.
  • Science: Physics. Placement in Honors Physics will be determined based upon previous teacher recommendation and classroom performance in the first quarter of the year. Most students complete Physics at the college preparatory level.
  • World Languages: Students advance in their language study with teacher recommendations. Students new to Linden Hall are placed in level 1 or in advanced levels via testing.
  • Arts: Students are encouraged to consider semester-based coursework in studio art, photography, music, and theater.
  • Physical Education: Upper School Students meet their PE requirement through participation in after school activities: Jr. High Sports, Varsity Sports, Club Sports, or our Cooperative Program with Warwick School District.

Tenth Grade

Rising tenth grade students should plan on taking:
  • English: American Literature. Some students may qualify for Honors American Literature based upon previous course performance, teacher recommendation, and standardized test performance.
  • Mathematics: Usually Algebra 2, possibly on the honors level depending on departmental recommendation. Students advance in their mathematics coursework based upon teacher recommendations; new students are placed via application recommendation and testing.
  • History: World History OR AP World History, by invitation only, depending upon departmental recommendation.
  • Science: Chemistry or Honors Chemistry, with departmental recommendation. Most students complete Chemistry at the college preparatory level.
  • World Languages: Students advance in their language study with teacher recommendations. Students new to Linden Hall are placed in via testing usually conducted during student orientation week.
  • Arts: Students are encouraged to consider semester-based coursework in studio art, photography, music, and theater.
  • Physical Education: Upper School Students meet their PE requirement through participation in after school activities: Jr. High Sports, Varsity Sports, Club Sports, or our Cooperative Program with Warwick School District.

Eleventh Grade


Rising juniors should plan their course of study carefully and may wish to meet with a member of the Academic Office or College Counseling staff, particularly if they are tailoring their course of study with a particular college or university in mind.
  • English: Women's Literature OR Honors Women's Literature. Advanced Placement English is by departmental recommendation.
    Linden Hall offers AP English Literature and Composition in alternating years with AP English Language and Composition; you may qualify for one or the other or both in your junior and senior years.
  • Mathematics: Usually Pre-Calculus, possibly on the honors level. After completing Algebra 2, students may begin selecting alternate pathways in mathematics. Please see the math department listing and flowchart for alternates and options. Students new to Linden Hall will be placed carefully in mathematics courses; consultation with a prior school may be necessary, and students may be asked for photocopies of syllabi and tables of contents from textbooks.
  • History: Students in the junior and senior year who have completed United States History are eligible for elective courses in history and social studies. Please see the history department list for offerings in economics, art history, archaeology, and Advanced Placement courses. Elective coursework will vary from year to year, depending upon student interest and teacher availability.
  • Science: Biology or Honors Biology, based upon previous teacher recommendation. Most students complete Biology at the college preparatory level. Students may also double up in AP Physics or AP Chemistry in the junior year.
  • World Languages: Students advance their language study in French, Mandarin, or Spanish. Junior students who have completed level 3 are encouraged to finish level 4 of their language this year in preparation for Advanced Placement coursework in the senior year; however, the occasional student may choose to begin new language study this year or may focus her attention in another department.
  • Arts: Students are encouraged to consider semester-based coursework in studio art, photography, music, and theater. Students who have not yet satisfied their graduation requirement in this department should plan carefully how to do so.
  • Physical Education: Upper School Students meet their PE requirement through participation in after school activities: Jr. High Sports, Varsity Sports, Club Sports, or our Cooperative Program with Warwick School District.

Twelfth Grade

Rising seniors who have satisfied their requirements in other departments are encouraged to create a specialized course of study in an area that is of particular interest to them. Students should carefully consult the graduation requirements when planning their twelfth grade year. Any requirements left unfulfilled must be completed in the senior year. Students may take courses beyond the minimum graduation requirements in any department, particularly if planning to apply to competitive or highly competitive colleges and universities. However, students are reminded that the college preparatory mantra is “all five cores, all four years.”

Students, in conjunction with their parents, will work closely with the College Counseling staff in the spring of their junior year. College counselors will get to know the student and their family to help them create a personalized college plan, including suggestions for course of study.

English as a Second Language

Students who are language learners in English will be placed into appropriately supportive literature and language classes for their current level of achievement. Please see the following department description for additional information on placement and course offerings in ESL classes.

Please click here for more information on the ESL Program at Linden Hall.

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