Advanced Humanities Research

Advanced Humanities Research (AHR) is a yearlong course offered to students with a deep interest in the humanities—languages, literature, history, philosophy and the arts—who want to build on the knowledge acquired in the humanities curriculum. AHR is designed for students to move beyond the Advanced Placement program, and in many ways, approximate the experience of undergraduates in top liberal arts schools.

After an introductory unit that exposes students to research methods in the various humanities disciplines, students use Berkshire’s resources to define a field of inquiry and formulate a question. They next prepare a comprehensive literature review in which they summarize and critique contemporary scholarship relevant to their topic. Finally, working with guidance from their instructor and a college professor who specializes in their field, the students compose and revise a full-length paper that they present to the school.


Advanced Humanities Research students often travel to locations that provide a genuine connection to an historical event, a popular figure, or a unique scholarly research resource. One recent trip to New York City included a stop at the New York Public Library, where students analyzed World War II maps drawn from U.S. soldiers' first-hand experience and browsed Shakespeare's First Folio. Other trips include visits to the Sawyer Library at Williams College, Edith Wharton's The Mount in Lenox, Ma., and the Clark Art Institute. 

There is such a legacy represented by these great institutions, and I'm so glad we got a taste of it.JULIE KOKOT '17
New york university

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Clay Spawn
History Faculty
Dir. of Advanced Humanities Research

Independent Schools Magazine Winter 2017

Click here to download Dr. Kohlhepp's article Toward The Next Level about Humanities at Berkshire School, which was featured in Independent School magazine.