Academic rigor is the name of the game in the Pace Upper School—and while we set the bar high, we provide the support students need to exceed expectations.

Students may choose to follow a path toward Advanced Placement in one department while taking less rigorous courses in another. These individual choices, guided by caring and knowledgeable deans in consultation with parents, speak to students’ interests and talents. Elective courses offer opportunities for additional exploration, ensuring students find their place in the classroom and beyond.

Our faculty are the heart of the Upper School academic program, and they have the freedom to create challenging courses that unfailingly prepare students for college, for their roles in a civil society and for the challenges of a global community.


These courses provide the core content that will prepare students for the college of their choice. Our Upper School curriculum is divided into two levels: college preparatory and honors, with Advanced Placement courses offered in every department.


These advanced courses require more extensive reading and preparation, taking students beyond the college preparatory courses. Students must satisfy the following requirements for admission to an honors-level course:

  • Superior performance on aptitude and achievement tests
  • Superior past performance in a specific subject area
  • Combined recommendations of teachers, department chairs and division head.

Advanced Placement (AP) Program

AP courses provide an opportunity for acceleration and/or credit in college. Students enrolled in AP courses are required to take AP examinations developed by the College Board.

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