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Course Offerings

Northwood School Program 2022-2023 

The Northwood School academic philosophy builds on the school’s mission and serves as the foundation for all aspects of the curriculum. 

Northwood School prepares students to shape the future. We engage students in the active pursuit of knowledge and believe that students learn best through exploration and inquiry. Students gain resilience, become independent thinkers, and challenge perspectives by forming relationships with their teachers and peers. The Northwood experience is rooted in the Adirondacks and creates confident, globally minded students, ready to innovate and adapt to our ever-changing world. 


Northwood School’s Approach to Education  

A Northwood School education, while maintaining a challenging college-preparatory curriculum at its core, is undergoing a process of re-design in response to the changing world and college landscape. This year’s offerings are designed to meet New York State requirements and college expectations, while allowing students flexibility and choice to pursue their interests. We include a variety of Honors, AP, Advanced Research, Independent Initiative, traditional and non-traditional options to suit each student's abilities. Pathways of study are designed to strengthen intellectual abilities, promote character development, advance interests in specific subject areas and prepare students for life beyond Northwood’s campus. 

Above all, we aim to teach students how to learn. We encourage them to be in the driver’s seat of their own educational career. It is our hope that all students will build the skills necessary to participate in one of our Independent Initiatives (p.6) or Advanced Research Studies (p.16 and p.25) should they have a desire to do so.  

With that in mind, our rigorous curriculum aims to recognize both the academic and experiential modes of learning that students engage in both during the traditional academic day and during their co-curricular pursuits. As you will find in the following course descriptions, many courses also are organized differently, outside of the traditional confines of how school “seat time” is measured. Courses may meet only once a week for an extended period of time, such as our Friday course options, once a semester for an intensive 48-hour weekend such as our Outing Club electives, or asynchronously such as our arts Studio Hours option. 

In this course program, you will find each of our offerings for the 2022-23 school year with descriptions of course content and how the course is executed. Please read carefully to understand the commitment of each course as well as any prerequisites or necessary teacher approvals. Placement in a course is subject to space availability, the daily schedule and a student’s overall course load. Some changes may occur. All students will be contacted by the Academic Dean over the summer to confirm their registration. 


Graduation Requirements 

The graduation requirements outlined here must be met in order to earn a Northwood diploma. Six courses per semester are the standard load for Northwood students. This includes a co-curricular engagement as detailed below.  Students are urged to challenge themselves academically which, for many, means taking courses well beyond those required for a diploma. Northwood strongly recommends that students take a rigorous academic program for personal growth as well as for the practical purpose of increasing college options.  


Northwood is making the shift from a trimester system to a semester system this academic year. For the Class of 2026 onwards, the minimum number of credits required for graduation is 24. This translates to six full-year courses. (A year-long course earns 1 credit; a semester course earns 0.5 credit.)  For returning Northwood students, previously taken full-year courses now equal one credit. Previously taken trimester courses (worth 1 or 2 credits) equal .5 credit. For students transferring into Northwood, equivalencies for graduation requirements will be accepted.  


For all graduating classes prior to 2026, adaptations will be made per the below: 

For students in the Class of 2025, the total number of credits will be 15 each for 2022-23, 2021-22, and 2020-21 plus 6 for the final year. Total = 51. 

For students in the Class of 2024, the total number of credits will be 15 each for 2022-23 and 2021-22 plus 6 per year for the following years. Total = 42. 

For students in the Class of 2023, the total number of credits will be 15 for 2022-23 plus 6 per year for the following years. Total = 33.





Required Courses 





Humanities I, Humanities II, Short courses or AP options 

Social Science 

Humanities I, Humanities II, US History (including Civics) 

World Languages 

2 years of the same language minimum, 3 preferred 

Visual and/or performing art 

Can include fine art, music or dance. Can be met through any combination of elective offerings, Friday course offerings and credited studio hours. 




Science (lab) 

Must include both life science and physical science 



 Algebra 1, Geometry, Algebra 2 


Can be any courses offered, labeled as elective or otherwise. 



Students will complete a LEAP program each year of enrollment excluding senior year. 

Northwood Seminar 


Students will complete a seminar program each year of enrollment excluding senior year. 



Met through Northwood Seminar 

Physical Education 


Can be met through athletics, dance or NOC options. 

Co-curricular Education 


Met through co-curricular choice. May simultaneously provide credit for Arts or P.E. 





*Students are required to engage in LEAP, Northwood Seminar and Co-curricular education while enrolled at Northwood. For transfer students, the final number of credits to meet requirements will therefore vary in direct proportion to the number of semesters spent at Northwood.

Northwood School Program 2022-2023 Course Offerings

Northwood Academic Programs