Course Selection

Ursuline Academy conducts a course selection process in our Upper School that invites you to think strategically and critically about your academic career and interests with the help of our experienced faculty and Counseling Department. Our staff and faculty place your best interest at the forefront of our personalized course selection process, which takes into consideration your academic interests, strengths, and extracurricular activities. At Ursuline, our personalized approach ensures that you excel in our rigorous Upper School curriculum from day one and are more than prepared for the academic demands in college and beyond.

Course selection for the upcoming school year begins early in the second semester, which allows you ample time to work with your counselor and advisors to develop the most comprehensive and academically challenging schedule for you. Incoming freshmen receive a printed course catalog; sophomores, juniors, and seniors view the course catalog online through Edline. The Counseling Department and faculty ensure you have full access to course guidance information and all registration materials.

Choosing an Academic Course Load

As an Ursuline Upper School student, you are advised with the guidance of our Counseling Department and faculty to take a course load that best fits your needs and interests. Our extensive and comprehensive course offerings fulfill our mission, and our personalized approach ensures your academic growth and success. Due to the rigorous college preparatory nature of our courses, freshmen, sophomores and juniors are recommended to take seven credits per year, and seniors must carry a minimum of six credits.

Our four-step approval process ensures comprehensive oversight to properly plan and track your academic career at Ursuline.

  1. Advisor approval: You meet with your advisors to discuss your proposed course selections. Your advisors ensure your selections align with the appropriate course levels based on prerequisites, past performance, and teacher recommendations. If a course requires departmental approval, you must obtain signatures from the department chairperson or course instructor.
  2. Parental approval: In keeping with our goal to make your academic success our priority, parental involvement is a critical piece of our process. Your parents or guardians sign and date your course selection forms to indicate approval.
  3. Counselor approval: To ensure continuity of your academic career, your counselor verifies your final course selections.
  4. Course submission: To complete the process, you must enter your requested courses through our online program and submit your completed course selection forms to the Assistant Principal by the designated date each spring.


Curriculum Levels

Ursuline Academy offers a variety of curriculum levels to best meet your academic needs, and all courses are taught at rigorous levels to prepare you for college admission. You enter our Upper School curriculum at the college preparatory level and can advance to honors level with teacher and/or departmental approval based on your level of academic readiness. We also offer an extensive selection of Advanced Placement (AP) courses, which are college level courses weighted more heavily in your GPA due to the academic rigor required. With qualifying AP scores, you can earn credit, advanced placement, or both at many colleges and universities in the United States and Canada.

Our Advanced Placement Program is for highly motivated students able to work at the college level and score well on the required AP exams taken in May. Our Advanced Placement offerings include: English Literature and Composition; English Language and Composition; Calculus AB; Calculus BC; Statistics; Biology; Chemistry; Environmental Science; Physics 1; Physics 2; U.S. History; European History; Human Geography; U.S. Government; Psychology; French Language; Spanish Language; Art History; and Studio Art.

Students enrolled in an AP course must take the designated AP Exam in May. There is a fee from the College Board for each AP exam. If you do not take the AP exam as scheduled, you must take an Ursuline final exam, the AP indication for the course will be removed from your final transcript, and the final GPA recalculated at the honors