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Buckingham Browne and Nichols School

School rating 4 / 5 by

80 Gerrys Landing Road Cambridge MA 02138 United States
PK to 12th


Buckingham Browne and Nichols School review by .

Buckingham Browne & Nichols school B-12(known as BB&N) has a tradition of academic excellence. BB&N's motto is honor, scholarship, and kindness. BB&N encourages students to try honors and Advanced Placement courses in all disciplines. Unfortunately, some of BB&N's most distinguished faculty have retired in recent years. BB&N offers important foreign languages like Spanish, French, Latin, Mandarin Chinese, Russian, and most recently, Arabic. BB&N promotes the idea of languages as one's "passport to the world." There are many language clubs students can participate in as well as foreign exchanges and trips. BB&N teachers write detailed comments for every student that outline the student's strengths and weaknesses. This individualizes students rather than just assigning letter grades. Also, each student's advisor writes a personal letter. Teachers and peer tutors are available for extra-help if students need it. Outside tutoring is discouraged but students often resort to outside tutors if they are concerned about their grades. Because of the inevitable competition surrounding college, students everywhere are increasingly anxious about getting accepted. However, the increased number of applications to colleges has not impacted the top-tier colleges and universities that continue to accept BB&N students every year. Math and Science courses are also challenging at BB&N. Students can choose to take SAT II's for Physics, Biology, Chemistry, etc. BB&N provides preparation for these tests. BB&N challenged me and allowed me to grow intellectually. Most of the teachers I had cared deeply about my learning. The environment at BB&N often becomes too stressful for some students juggling academics, required after-school athletics, extra-curricular activities, and home life. BB&N definitely prepares you for college. I am doing well at Wellesley College and I have BB&N to thank for it. BB&N pushed me hard but it also nurtured me in a way that others schools might not have. Class sizes at BB&N are usually from 12-16 students. This allows for individual attention and a richer learning environment. Most faculty members are accessible. The average workload varies depending on course selection, number of AP's, personal pace and time management. The hours spent on homework increase with age. 3 hours is a good estimate for upperclassmen.

College Counseling

College admissions is usually discussed during junior year at BB&N. Students receive a detailed....

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

I applied to BB&N for the 8th grade. I took the standardized prep school....

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

The middle school does not have a cafeteria so students must provide their own lunch. The upper school has a great nutritional cafeteria that offers a daily hot lunch, sandwich and salad bar, fruit options, milk, juices, and different desserts. BB&N is a day school only. The facilities at BB&N are very new. A recent construction project revamped the whole upper school providing many new classrooms with lovely oblong wooden tables, and new spaces for the orchestra, theater, and the arts. Students can enjoy the luxury of an internet cafe and nicely designed grade centers and hangout....

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