Academics at Dublin

No two Dublin educations are the same.

We couple the power of a classic college preparatory education with the ability and flexibility to dive deeper into a newly discovered passion.

We require rigorous and extensive course work in English, Mathematics, Science, History, a World Language, Technology and the Arts. But this is just the foundation. The excitement for our students is in being able to take their ideas and passions further.

For some that is in investing themselves heavily in AP Course work in the Sciences or Humanities. For others it is maximizing self-expression through both the Visual and Performing Arts. Others delve deeply into Technology and Robotics. They are fully supported through student requested electives, independent studies and a capstone Senior Project that offers students the opportunity to engage in a year-long rigorous study centered-around a question or topic that is of special interest to them.


Course of Study at Dublin

Course of Study

Dublin students typically take six academic courses a semester. Freshman and sophomores usually take a full schedule of core classes in the disciplines of English, History, Mathematics,  Science and World Languages.  In addition, they generally also take an elective course in Arts, Technology or in an area of particular interest.

Over the last six years, we have offered over 175 different course offerings in order to meet our students needs.

As they enter their junior year, students at Dublin begin to increasingly specialize in areas of interest. They do this by taking classes that are directed at their interests and abilities but that also allow them to meet the distribution requirements of the school.  Many students focus heavily in the Humanities, PRISM (math, science and technology), or in the Arts. Others take a balanced schedule sampling courses in all the academic areas that are available at Dublin.

The easiest and most direct way to see the range of classes that Dublin students actually take is to review actual student schedules. 

AP Courses

We offer a full range of AP courses including:  AP Biology; AP Calculus AB; AP English Language; AP Environmental Sci; AP US Government & Politics (2015-16); AP Spanish Language; Adv. Topics in Math; AP Chemistry (2015-16); AP European History (2016-17); AP Latin (2015-16); AP Spanish Literature; AP English Lit; AP Physics 1; and AP US History. 

We also have offered additional AP Courses based on particular student interest. 

Electives and Independent Studies

We also offer a large array of more specialized electives, which are developed in response to students’ curiosity or teachers’ passions. Students can also initiate independent studies.  Our rigorous graduation requirements ensure that students leave Dublin with a strong basis of knowledge and skills, and a range of creative and expressive experiences. 

Senior Projects

One of the newest additions to our curriculum is the opportunity for seniors to develop a Senior Project.

Senior Project offers students the opportunity to engage in year-long rigorous study centered around a question or topic that is of special interest to them. The course has both a scholarly and a creative, or applied, component and students are given college-level expectations of independence, time management, and advanced analytical and creative problem solving.

Click to review Senior Projects 2014-2016

  • Music Production
  • Educational Testing and Predicting Success
  • Cognitive Science and Whistled Languages
  • The Radicalization of Japan Pre-WWII
  • Virtual Reality/Programming
  • Performing Arts/French Theater Forms
  • Makers Culture
  • Teaching Socialism
  • Performing Arts/Theater History
  • 3D Modeling/Environment Design
  • Performing Arts/Theater History
  • Choral Score Arranging/Conducting
  • Japanese Language/Translation
  • Marine Biology/Robotics
  • 3D Animation/Story Design
  • “The Solely Feelin’s Project: Shoes for Expression”/Visual Arts
  • Music Recording and Production
  • 3D Animation/Directing
  • Computer Science/Programming
  • Fundraising
  • Creative Writing

Every student writes a research paper exploring the field or fields at the intersection of their project, documents their process with regular unit plans and reflections, works both with their Senior Project teacher and on- or off-campus mentors, and (when applicable) applies for funding for special workshops, internships, lessons or materials necessary for the enhancement of their learning. Ultimately each student channels his/her knowledge, skills and passion into creating an original work that is shared with the community on Mayfair Weekend. In its inaugural year, the value of a capstone course like Senior Project shows itself not only in the end products the students create but in the journeys they have taken in the process.


Academic Requirements

Graduation Requirements

One credit equals a full year course.
All students must maintain a minimum course load of five courses per trimester. To receive a diploma, all seniors must earn a passing grade in each course in which they are enrolled. An Independent Study will be considered as a sixth course.

English: Four credits. All students must be enrolled in an English course in every trimester at Dublin School.
Mathematics: Seven credits in the two disciplines of mathematics and science. Mathematics must include Algebra II. We strongly urge that students take three years of high school-level mathematics.
Science: Three of the science credits must be in lab sciences, including Biology and Chemistry. As of 2014-15, most students who enter the 9th grade are required to take Introduction to STEM.
History: Six credits in the two disciplines of history and foreign language. The requirement in history is three credits, including U.S. History. All seniors are required to complete a minimum of one course in history during their senior year, unless they are already enrolled in a full-year course.
World Language: The foreign language requirement calls for the completion of two credits in the same language. * We strongly urge that students take three years of the same language at the high school-level.
Technology: The requirement is .3 credit in Introduction to Computer Applications or a satisfactory score on the Computer Competency Assessment test.
Arts: Two credits in studio art, music, dance or theater & film elective courses. Students are not required to take more than two trimester courses in arts per year of attendance at Dublin School.

Electives:One credit in elective courses in English, mathematics, history, foreign languages, or the arts. Each elective is worth .3 credit.

Algebra I and/or a year of foreign language taken in middle school will be recognized if the student can successfully pass into and complete the next level of the course.

Graduation Requirements For The Honors Diploma

Dublin School offers an Honors diploma for students who successfully complete the challenge of a more rigorous program. Students seeking the Honors Diploma must earn a GPA of at least 3.5 during their junior and senior years, with no individual trimester grade lower than a “C” during the same two year period. All senior requirements for the regular diploma apply, and are augmented as follows:
Students who receive a Fundamental Rule violation for academic dishonesty during their Junior or Senior year are not eligible for the Honors Diploma.

English: Four credits.
Mathematics: Eight credits in the two disciplines of mathematics and science.
History: Seven credits in the two disciplines of history and foreign language. The requirement in history is three credits, including U.S. History.
World Language: The minimum world language requirement is three credits in the same language taken at the high school level, or two years each of two different world languages.
Technology: The requirement is .3 credit.
Arts: Two credits in studio art, music, dance or theater & film. Students are not required to take more than two trimester courses in arts per year of attendance at Dublin School.

Algebra I and/or a year of world language taken in 8th grade will be recognized and given credit if the student has earned a satisfactory grade, and can successfully pass into and complete the next level of the course. Dublin School may require a student to repeat a course in which s/he has not mastered the material.

Graduation Requirements for Students of English as a Second Language

International students’ English competency will be assessed according to the SLEP or the TOEFL tests by the ESL Coordinator, and students will be placed into the level of ESL instruction as indicated by their performance. Students who study ESL at Dublin School will take courses in the English department a year below their chronological grade. They will be placed in other courses commensurate with demonstrated ability. Hence, ESL students may graduate from Dublin School with English 11 and U.S. History in their senior year. They are expected to meet all requirements in other disciplines.

Summary Class Listing

Current Core Classes

English 9: Coming of Age in Literature and Composition
English 10: Global Voices and the “Danger of the Single Story”
English 11: An American Conversation

World History I
World History II
US History

Algebra 1
Applied Algebra II
Theoretical Algebra II
Advanced Topics in Mathematics

Introduction to STEM Science

Advanced Levels of French

Advanced Latin

Spanish I Spanish II
Spanish III Spanish III Honors Spanish 5/6 – Spanish Culture & Civilization

Current AP Offerings

AP English Language and Composition
AP English Literature and Composition
AP US Government and Politics
AP US History
AP Calculus
AP Biology
AP Chemistry
AP Environmental Science
AP Physics
AP Computer Science
AP Spanish 4 Language and Culture AP AP Spanish Literature
AP Latin

Recent Electives Offered

English 12 - African-American Lit
English 12 - Art of the Autobiography
English 12 - Creative Writing
English 12 - Evil & Postmodern Lit
English 12 - Filmmaking & Literature
English 12 - Folklore & Fairytales
English 12 - Harlem Renaissance
English 12 - Literature & the Human Condition
English 12 - Literature of the Devil
English 12 - Lost Generation
English 12 - New Play Lab
English 12 - Racism in America
English 12 - Topics in Literature
The American Presidency
19th & 20th Century Composers
Acting the Song
Acting Troupe
Acting Workshop
Advanced Acting
Advanced Computer Programming
Advanced Drawing
Advanced Music Lab I-III
Advanced Painting
Advanced Painting I-III
Advanced Photography I-III
Advanced Theory & Compsition
American Civil Rights
Anti-Semeticism, Holocaust & Genocide
Application Development
Applied Programming
Ceramics I-II
Cinema Studies
Comparative Religions
Computer Aided Design
Computer Music
Considering Questions
Dance I-III
Data Networks
Digital Photography I-III
Drawing I-III
Dubliners/Glee Club
Economics I-II
Electronics Circuitry & Design
English 12 - Something Wicked
ESL Academic Reading
ESL Academic Writing
ESL English as a Second Language
European History 1945-2012
Film Reflections
Flash Animation
Fundamentals of Economics
Gender & American Popular Culture
Global Food Systems
Guitar I-III
Historical Inquiry
History by Hollywood
History of Ancient Greece & Rome
History of Islam
Human Geography
Human Rights
Intro to Astronomy
Intro to Electronics
Intro to Music I-III
Introduction to Acting
Introduction to Batik
Introduction to C# Programming
Introduction to Music Theory
Jazz Band I-III
Latin America in the 20th Century
Learning Skills Tutorial
Marine Biology
Meteorology and Climate
Nuclear Issues
Nutrition, Health & Society
Page to the Stage
Painting I-III
Performing Arts
Physics, Energy & Environment
Piano Studies I-III
Play Production
Programming I
Social Movements in America
Sports Medicine
Storytelling with Video
Three Dimensional Design I-III
Toxins and Us
Two Dimensional Design I-III
Voice Studies I-III
Web Design
Woodworking I-III

Recent Independent Studies

IS: Senior Project I-III
IS: Advanced Music Lab
IS: Advanced Music Theory
IS: Asian Caligraphy I-II
IS: Color Theory
IS: Creative Musicianship
IS: Drawing
IS: Guitar
IS: Hip Hop Culture
IS: Intro to Drumming
IS: Painting
IS: Theory/Musicianship
IS: Trumpet
IS: Ukelele
IS: Literary Publishing
IS: Visual Poetry
IS: American Civil Rights
IS: Comparative Religions
IS: The Empire Strikes Back
IS: Teaching Assistant
IS: Perkin Observatory Research
IS: Rivers & Watersheds
IS: Advanced Networking
IS: Autonomous Navigation
IS: C# Programming
IS: Computer Aided Design
IS: Digital Video Production
IS: Electric GoCart
IS: Image Processing Programming
IS: Network Security
IS: Web Publishing
IS: Advanced Mandarin
IS: Italian

the Humanities at Dublin

English, English as a Second Language, History and World Languages

Humanities at Dublin

The Humanities — the study of Language and Literature, History, and World Languages (coupled with our extensive arts requirements) — are disciplines of memory and imagination, telling us as people where we have been and helping us envision where we are going. At Dublin, they provide an intellectual framework and context for understanding and thriving in a changing world, and they directly connect us with the global community and those that look and think differently from ourselves.

When we study these subjects, we learn not only what, but how and why. Dublin humanities courses are lively, discussion-based, intensive and relevant and are designed to teach students to question, analyze, debate and communicate — skills that are critically important in shaping adults who can become independent thinkers. The curriculum couples introductory survey courses focused on major historical trends and literary traditions with an extensive and changing library of electives. Electives are often developed and offered based on the specific requests of students.

We are committed to liberal education because we know the immense, life-long benefits of rigorous study of the humanities. Our focus is on strengthening clarity of written and oral expression, critical and analytic reasoning, and the creativity to think outside the box. Students read a wide variety of sources from news articles to graphic novels to scholarly criticism to primary source documents in an attempt to discern the differing views on a critical topic. They learn research skills and write major research papers. Our course work results in an advanced level of preparation for university level academic work.


PRISM at Dublin

Mathematics, Robotics, Science, Technology, the Perkin Observatory

PRISM at Dublin

PRISM stands for Programming, Robotics, Imagination, Science & Math. We focus on these areas together not only because the skills and knowledge in each discipline are essential for student success, but also because these fields are deeply intertwined in the real world and in how students learn most effectively. PRISM is an interdisciplinary and applied approach that is coupled with hands-on, problem-based learning.

Our PRISM program goes beyond the mere transfer of knowledge. It engages students and equips them with critical thinking and problem solving. Our students engage in real world solutions to real world problems. Whether that be in "teaching" a robot to react to its environment, designing and building an electric car, analyzing and recommending the best heating source for new campus buildings or studying marine life by building a submersible vehicle, Dublin students are offered the opportunity to discover the intellectual excitement of conceptualizing and developing something new.

Foundational to our program is a heavy investment in technology education. We offer a wide variety of courses from Electronics and Circuitry to Network Security and Engineering Design and iDesign. We focus on "real world" projects and couple individual learning with imagination and group work. Our robotics program allows students to work together on the challenge of building a robot from scratch and programming it to perform a specific task for the FIRST Robotics Competition.

We have built upon our distinctive technology program in order to explore the increasingly blurred lines between science, technology and math. For instance, we are working on ensuring that all students have a basic proficiency with programming by infusing it into Math courses. Science courses utilize technology for data analysis and to design and prototype inventions using 3-D printers.

Central to everything we do in this area is a heavy reliance on taking full advantage of our surroundings and physical resources. The Perkin Observatory allows students to learn about science's greatest mysteries and acquire skills in astro-imaging. Math and Science combine in a variety of projects such as finding the slope of our ski courses, filming and graphing the arc of a projectile, using bicycles in Math class, measuring the differing temperature gradients in a snowbank or exploring the various eco-environments of our campus.

the Arts at Dublin

Dance, Fine and Studio Art, Music, Theater and Film, the Putnam Gallery, the Humanities Program

At Dublin we believe the arts are an essential part of a well-rounded education and a fundamental aspect of human expression.

The Arts Department offers courses is visual arts, dance, music, theater and film that serve both experienced, passion-driven young artists and students with little or no previous exposure to arts education. Dublin students can choose from a variety of visual and performing arts electives each term in order to fulfill their two-year requirement. It is recommended that at least one of these years be dedicated to honing one’s skills within a particular field of study. In addition, we offer a plethora of extra-curricular arts opportunities.

Learning in the arts offers students a vehicle for communication and expression, a way of knowing themselves and others. Arts classes at Dublin involve discovering new questions and producing new ideas, objects, performances, or interpretations from the study of existing works and conventions. We challenge and nurture students as they take risks and explore divergent, non-linear ways of thinking. Students collaborate with each other and grapple with problems that have multiple solutions. Learning in, about, and through the arts develops each learner’s capacity to make meaning from experience and knowledge, respond to creativity, celebrate diversity, and contribute to society.

Our arts faculty is comprised of committed educators who are also working artists themselves within their respective fields. We actively seek out enrichment opportunities that will expose our students to contemporary and classic work through field trips to professional performances, private lessons, masterclasses, and guest artists who present and speak about their work.

Come create and collaborate with us!


Academic Resources at Dublin

College Counseling,  Griffin Learning Center,   Dublin School Library

College Counseling at Dublin School

True to Dublin School’s mission, the College Office strives to offer an individualized and supportive college counseling experience. At the same time, the process requires balanced ownership by students, parents, and the college counselor. Students are encouraged to take a challenging course load and to recognize that the quality of one’s academic performance will greatly impact the college admissions experience. The main role of the counselor is to help guide students through the process of finding the appropriate college match.

Griffin Learning Center

Dublin students display an inherent curiosity about the world around them and about the learning process itself. As navigators of their educational journey, students who wish to foster this curiosity and further develop their learning skills may enroll in the Griffin Learning Center. Participants in the Center receive individualized guidance and instruction directly tailored to their learning style and learning needs. Support is offered in the areas of effective learning strategies, reading and writing processes, critical thinking, organization, time management and other executive skills.

Dublin School Library