The Upper School at Rabun Gap follows a liberal arts curriculum that prepares students in grades 9-12 for college and life.
More than 350 students from 40+ countries make up our student body at the Upper School, with more than 70% boarding students. 

Students take core classes in the humanities, mathematics, and science and can further their academic interests in a variety of elective classes including STEAM, theatre, dance, arts, weightlifting, and special in-depth topics with the Head of School. Average class size is 12, and there are no more than 16 students in any class. 

The Advanced Placement (AP) Program 

Rabun Gap offers 16 AP courses in all academic departments at the Upper School. 
  • Over 30% of Upper School students take at least one AP class.
  • Last year, 247 AP Exams were taken by 101 students.
  • Over the past three years, more than 80% of our AP students earned a 3 or higher on their AP exams, potentially earning college credit prior to high school graduation.
Contact our Admission Office at 706-746-7720 and schedule a tour of our campus or shadow a student for a day. 

What makes our Upper School academic experience unique?

Research Curriculum

Our Upper School students complete year-long, grade-level research projects administered through
collaborative teams of educators across disciplines.  Freshmen learn about primary and secondary sources, information literacy, and the importance of both organization and critical thinking in the research process. Sophomores select a single primary source and then pursue secondary research, write a comprehensive paper, and present their findings. Juniors propose and develop an American Studies Thesis, focusing on a single artifact from American history and then developing a research paper that engages cultural, historical, and/or political contexts. Seniors engage in more individual research projects based on their emerging academic interests. These research efforts are showcased at the annual Academic Symposium, where student work is evaluated by judges from local colleges and universities. 

The Humanities Model

Rabun Gap-Nacoochee School has embraced the Humanities model in the Upper School. The Humanities Model fuses traditional history and English classes together. Our Humanities faculty incorporate team teaching and cross-curricular materials. Students both study and write about historical texts and events in a way in an environment that encourages discourse and collaboration.

College Counseling

The question for Rabun Gap students is not if they are going to college - it's where. 100% of our students earn acceptances from the top colleges and universities in the U.S. and abroad. Our dedicated College Counseling team works with every student to help them choose their best-fit college. College preparation begins with a 4-year academic plan for each student starting in the 9th grade. The college counselor initiates college exploration in grade 10. Exposure to a wide variety of colleges and universities is provided early on through college visits and fairs. 

Travel Study

Our students have the unique opportunity to go beyond Rabun Gap to enhance their learning experience on travel study trips. Students have studied environmental science in Hawaii, art in Italy, and language in France on school-sponsored trips over Spring Break. Rabun Gap has a partnership with Spoleto Study Abroad in Spoleto, Italy, where students can spend the summer in Italy studying arts and humanities. In addition to travel study trips, faculty members also schedule regular local field trips to Atlanta, Greenville, Asheville, and other surrounding areas.

Upper School News

Hear from student Cal Shelton about the academic environment at the Upper School!

Check out our viewbook!

List of 5 items.

  • Graduation Requirements

    English4 Units
    Mathematics4 Units
    Science 4 Units
    History3 Units
    Foreign Language3 Units
    Fine Arts1 Unit
    Bible History1 Unit
    Physical Ed/Health 1 Unit
  • S.T.E.A.M. Program

    The Upper School S.T.E.A.M. (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Math) program, housed in the Dess Oliver S.T.E.A.M. center, is a key component of the Upper School curriculum. Click here to learn more about S.T.E.A.M.
  • Teaching and Learning Center

    The Teaching and Learning Center offers student support in any subject, every day and during evening study hall. Click here to learn more. 
  • Upper School Curriculum

    Classes offered include: 

    American Government
    American Literature
    American Literature Honors
    AP American Government
    AP Economics
    AP English Language & Composition
    AP English Literature & Composition
    AP Modern European History
    AP United States History
    English II
    English II Honors
    English IV
    English IV Honors
    English IV: All the World's a Stage
    Humanities 9
    Modern World History Honors
    Modern World History
    The 80s
    United States History

    Bridge II
    Humanities 10 B
    Humanities 9 B

    AP French Language
    AP Mandarin Language
    AP Spanish Language
    French I
    French II
    French II Honors
    French III
    French III Honors
    French IV/V/Adv
    Mandarin I
    Mandarin II
    Mandarin II Honors
    Mandarin III
    Mandarin III Honors
    Mandarin IV Honors
    Spanish I
    Spanish II
    Spanish II Honors
    Spanish III
    Spanish III Honors
    Spanish IV Honors

    Algebra I
    Algebra II
    AP Calculus AB
    AP Calculus BC
    AP Statistics
    Pre Calculus
    Pre Calculus Honors
    Anatomy & Physiology
    AP Biology
    AP Chemistry
    AP Environmental Science
    AP Physics 1
    AP Physics 2
    Biology Honors
    Chemistry Honors
    Environmental Science I
    Physics: Astronomy

    Advanced Technical Theater
    Advanced Visual Design
    AP Art History
    AP Studio Art
    Computer Aided Design/3D
    Dance I
    Dance II
    Film Production 1
    Gap Dancers
    Gap Players
    Graphic Design & Photography
    Rabun Gap Chorus
    Technical Theater
    Visual Arts
    Wind Ensemble

    Biblical & Religious Studies
    Biblical & Religious Survey
  • Transcript Request

    Click here to request a transcript from the Academic Office. 

Upper School Academic Team

List of 3 members.

Rabun Gap-Nacoochee School is a private, coeducational day and boarding school for grades Pre-K through 12, located in Rabun Gap, GA. Centrally located between Atlanta, GA, Greenville, SC, and Asheville, NC, we combine our strong academic program, mountain setting, and Presbyterian heritage to inspire young people who are eager to learn and grow.

Rabun Gap-Nacoochee School does not discriminate regardless of race, color, religion, gender, disability, creed, or national origin.