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Phillips Academy Andover

School rating 4 / 5 by

180 Main Street Andover MA 01810 United States
9th to PG
9th to PG


Phillips Academy Andover review by .

Phillips Andover is said by many students to be 'harder than college'. While this has not been true in my experience, I feel that Andover has prepared me incredibly well for my undergraduate career. As a student who took full advantage of the breadth of the school's course offerings, there is no one department that I would say outshone any of the others with regard to classes and teachers. Every single teacher I had was stellar. (Although some take a month or two to fully appreciate!) In the humanities department the emphasis is heavily on reading comprehension, engaging discussion, and writing. It is impossible to graduate from Phillips without being at the very least a good writer. While math and science classes are primarily lecture/problem solving based, Phillips has a designated half hour EVERY DAY for "conferences" with teachers, both scheduled and by drop in (like college "office hours" but much more personal). I've been in classes that have four people and classes that have eighteen, and both experiences have been fantastic. The small classes are very intense and require a lot of preparation. While in larger classes you are not put "on the spot" on a daily basis, all of the teachers require participation, and I found that larger classes provided a larger range of perspectives, and often inspired very spirited debate. The average workload depends on how easily your courses come to you, however, I would definitely say that 8-11pm is the very least required as an upperclassman. Because Andover has rigorous academics, the school has many layers of academic support for students, however the opportunity to challenge yourself is never exhausted.

College Counseling

College counseling at Phillips Andover is fantastic. They are extremely honest and straightforward with....

Sample insights on college counseling

  • They have contacts at most of the major universities and feel perfectly comfortable picking up the phone and advocating for a student to get accepted somewhere they feel is a good fit for that student. However, these counselors are certainly not magic bullets. They cannot guarantee that a student will get into an Ivy League university...
  • For those wishing to move on to Oxford or Cambridge, the provision is second-to-none. In the months running up to application and interview, every subject faculty offers classes (often run by former Oxbridge tutors) exploring further areas of their subject as well as offering advice on personal statements, interview technique and more...

Admissions - Getting Accepted

For the interview-- be yourself. They have YEARS of experience, and they can tell....

Sample insights on admissions

  • For the interview, dress conservatively. Try to be very clean and put together. Also, I was a tour guide for two years and at the end of every tour, we were asked to evaluate the candidate so if you think the tour is not apart of the process, you are very wrong. Ask questions and be interested. Also, tip for the parents: the kids speak on the tour. Do not ask their questions for them...
  • Most younger siblings have an easy time in the admissions process. I can only think of one case of a younger sibling not being admitted. About half of the students who entered with me had come from public schools. The remainder came from private K-6 schools, or had transferred from other New York private schools The Elizabeth Morrow School and St. Bernard were two of the larger feeder schools...

School Life

Dorms: No matter what "cluster" you are in, your dean will be great if you are willing to put in the effort to get to know them. While not all the dorms are equal in modernity, cleanliness, or personality, that is part of the charm-- you really make your own experience. Food: Got way better since Commons (dining hall) was renovated. Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner are all great times to socialize in between the rest of your life. Commons felt like a social hub while I was there, and it was fantastic because students, faculty, faculty families, and staff....

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