The English curriculum spans all four years and is designed to assist students both in developing a lifetime habit of intelligent reading and in acquiring a facility for effective written expression in a variety of forms.
The literature component of the curriculum is highly diversified, though there is a specific focus on American literature in second year and British literature in third year; additionally, in second year an American Studies Program and a Fine Arts course complement and enrich the basic curriculum. Fourth year consists entirely of trimester-length elective courses intended to respond to the broad array of student interests. Classes in all years are discussion oriented and assume the active participation of the students.
While mastery of the formal essay is the predominant focus of the writing component of the curriculum, there is ample opportunity for students to try their hand at alternative forms of writing. As with the literature component, here, too, students are encouraged to be independent thinkers and, in this instance, to derive satisfaction from the ability to express their ideas and insights in a writing style that is both sophisticated and distinctively individual.