Academics

2016-2017 School Profile
CEEB Code: 443330

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Contact Information 

Sister Lauren Beck, C.V.I.
President
Mary Aamodt, Ed.D.
Principal

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Dean of Students

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Counselor
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Academic Dean*
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Registrar

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Director of Character & Leadership

*College Counseling Contact Person

 

Mission

Incarnate Word Academy provides young women with a Catholic college preparatory education helping them grow in their relationship with Jesus, the Incarnate Word, and live according to His values.

 

Accreditation

Texas Catholic Conference Education Department under aegis of the Texas Education Agency; AdvancEd.

 

Professional Affiliations

National Catholic Education Association, Texas Association of Private and Parochial Schools, Houston Area Independent Schools, Texas Association for College Admissions Counseling, National Association for College Admissions Counseling, College Board, Greater Houston Partnership

 

Honor Societies

National Honor Society, Mu Alpha Theta, Sociedad Honoraria Hispánica, International Thespian Society

 

School Community

Incarnate Word Academy, a Catholic college-preparatory high school for young women, is uniquely situated in thriving and diverse downtown Houston surrounded by Minute Maid Park, Discovery Green, the George R. Brown Convention Center, and bustling centers of business and the arts. The oldest Catholic high school in Houston, Incarnate Word Academy is owned and operated by the Sisters of the Incarnate Word and Blessed Sacrament and is celebrating 144 years since its inception in 1873. Today, the student body represents fifty-six Catholic parishes and 108 zip codes across the metropolitan area, yet remains a friendly, intimate community of 336 young women. IWA will open a new $15 million, 18,500 square foot academic building in the spring of 2017 providing additional space for classes, collaboration, student life and fine arts, along with a rooftop patio to bring the outdoors to the urban campus. 

 

Young Leaders Program

The IWA Young Leaders Program is an innovative four-year character and leadership development program that provides IWA students with the opportunity to develop in-demand leadership skills built upon a foundation of strong personal character. IWA is one of the only high schools in the country to combine collegiate-level curriculum and experiential opportunities to empower students to take on leadership roles in their communities.

The leadership curriculum is packaged as the Young Leaders Concentration - a series of four courses available to students who desire an in-depth exposure to the leadership discipline. These courses leverage nationally recognized materials from institutions such as Santa Clara University and the Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania. The program also provides out-of-class experiences for each grade classification. For freshmen and sophomores, the focus is on character – challenging each student to be virtuous by doing the right things, the right way, and, thus, becoming a role model. Juniors and seniors focus on leadership by applying learned leadership skills into action in a variety of service projects and in school activities. Juniors and seniors also learn from corporate partners, such as PwC and Halliburton, about real-life experiences. Graduating from IWA with a concentration in Leadership makes our students stand out and prepared to significantly impact their communities.

 

IWA at a Glance

Total enrollment (9-12) 336 Student Demographics  
12th-grade enrollment 71 African American/Black 9%
    Asian or Pacific Islander 11%
Faculty (full-time and part-time) 39 Hispanic 13%
Faculty with master’s degrees 72% Multi-Racial 6%
Faculty with Ph.D. or Ed.D. 15% All Other Ethnicities 61%
Average class size 16 Catholic 81%
Student to faculty ratio 11:1 Non-Catholic 19%

 

College Preparatory Curriculum

IWA’s college preparatory curriculum exceeds the TEA’s recommended program, and allows students to expand upon their strengths and interests with diverse academic electives such as Contemporary US Women’s History, Leading with Service, Introduction to Philosophical Thought, and Leading with Business, a course in partnership with the Wharton School of Business. In addition to the academic requirements, students are required to complete 100 Service Learning Hours. 

 

28 credits are required for graduation:

Theology 4 Foreign Language (same language) 3
English 4 Physical Education 1
Mathematics 4 Health Education .5
Science (Biology, Chemistry, Physics) 4 Speech .5
Social Studies 3 Technology .5
Government .5 Fine Arts 1
Economics .5 Leading with Character .5
    Elective 1

 

GPA and Class Rank

GPA is determined using a 4.0 scale with an additional weight of 1.0 for honors and Advanced Placement (AP) courses. Incarnate Word Academy does not rank students. The GPA is weighted and cumulative from 9th grade. Transfer grades are not calculated into GPA. 

  Grade On-Level Honors/AP
A 90-100 4.0 5.0
B 80-89 3.0 4.0
C 75-79 2.0 3.0
D 70-74 1.0 2.0
F Below 70 0 0

 

Modified Block Schedule 

IWA has implemented a modified block schedule for 2016-2017.  Students have all eight classes on Mondays, Thursdays and Fridays with four of their classes on Tuesday and the other four on Wednesday to allow more time for experiential learning and reflection and decreased homework load two nights per week. 

 

Honors and Advanced Placement Courses

IWA offers 16 honors courses and 13 AP courses. Enrollment is determined by each department’s standards for academic performance, participation and faculty recommendation. There is no limit to the number of honors/AP courses a student may take, and each course is given a one point weight in the student’s GPA. All students enrolled in an AP course must sit for the AP exam.

Honors Courses  AP Courses 
Algebra I Geometry Biology Latin
Algebra II Latin III Calculus AB Psychology
Biology Physics  Calculus BC Spanish Language & Culture
Chemistry Physics II Chemistry Statistics*
Economics Pre-Calculus English Language & Composition U.S. Government & Politics
English I Spanish III English Literature & Composition United States History
English II World Geography French Language & Culture  
French III World History   *New for 2016-2017

 

Standardized Testing

SAT Scores* Middle 50%

Class of 2016 Class of 2015 Class of 2014
Students Tested 58 60 60
Crit. Reading 500-630 510-600 440-600
Math 500-590 460-590 470-570
Writing 520-620 500-630 470-590
    *All scores prior to SAT redesign   

 

ACT Scores Middle 50%

Class of 2016 Class of 2015 Class of 2014
Students Tested 67 42 36
English 21-28 20-27 21-26
Math  18-25 18-26 19-25
Reading   20-30 23-30 19-30
Science Reasoning 22-25 20-26 19-24
Composite 21-27 21-27 20-26

 

Cumulative GPA Distribution (Six Semesters)

  4.0 3.75-3.99 3.5-3.74 3.25-3.49 3.0-3.24 Below 3.0
Class of 2017 38% 15% 10% 10% 14% 13%
Class of 2016 38% 20% 9% 13% 10% 10%
Class of 2015 43% 13% 11% 8% 8% 17%

 

AP Scores

  2016 2015 2014
11th/12th students taking at least one exam 69% 71% 65%
Total Exams 213 239 194
Students with scores 3+ 86% 84% 87%

 

National Recognition

2016 Advanced Placement Recognition  Students Recognized in National Merit Scholarship Program 
AP Scholars 19 Class of 2017 3
AP Scholars with Honor 7 Class of 2016 3
AP Scholars with Distinction 12 Class of 2015 2
    Class of 2014 1
    Class of 2013


College Matriculation

  2016 2015 2014
Size of graduating class 69 64 61
4 year universities 97% 97% 96%
Out-of-state 22% 22% 19%
Private 49% 38% 32%
Public 51% 62% 68%

 

College Matriculation: Class of 2016

Auburn University Rice University Texas State University (3)
Baylor University (2) Saint Louis University Madrid Texas Tech University (4)
College of William & Mary Seattle University Texas Woman's University (2)
Franciscan University of Steubenville Southwestern University Trinity University
Houston Baptist University (3) St. Edward's University (2) University of Dallas
Lone Star College St. John's University University of Houston (6)
Loyola University New Orleans Stephen F. Austin State University University of Mississippi
Mount Carmel College of Nursing Temple University University of North Texas
New York University Texas A&M University (6) University of St. Thomas (7)
Pepperdine University Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi Universty of Texas at Arlington (3)
Purdue University Texas A&M University-Galveston University of Texas at Austin (2)
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (2) Texas Christian University University of Texas at San Antonio (3)
    University of Waterloo

College Acceptances: Classes of 2013-2016

Agnes Scott College Loyola University Chicago Texas Lutheran University
Allegheny College Loyola University Maryland Texas Southern University
American University Loyola University New Orleans Texas Tech University
Arizona State University Marquette University Texas Woman's University
Auburn University McGill University Trinity University
Austin College Millsaps College Tulane University
Ave Maria University Mississippi State University University of Arkansas
Bates College Mount Carmel College of Nursing University of Alabama
Baylor University New York University University of Arizona
Belmont University Northeastern University University of British Columbia
Boston University Northwestern University University of Colorado
Brigham Young University Ohio State University University of Dallas
Brown University Oklahoma City University University of Houston
Catholic University of America Oklahoma State University University of Kansas
Chatham University Our Lady of the Lake University University of Kentucky
Clemson University Pepperdine University University of Louisiana
College of the Holy Cross Prairie View A&M University University of Mary-Hardin Baylor
College of William & Mary Purdue University University of Miami
Colorado School of Mines Regis University University of Mississippi
Colorado State University Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute University of Missouri
Columbia University Rice University  University of Nebraska
Cornell College St. Louis University University of North Texas
Creighton University Saint Mary's College of California University of Notre Dame
Dartmouth College Sam Houston State University University of Oklahoma 
DeSales University Santa Clara University University of Portland
Drexel University Savannah College of Art and Design University of San Diego
Duke University Seattle University University of San Francisco
Duquesne University Seattle University University of St. Andrews
Eckerd College Seton Hill University University of St. Thomas
Emory University Southern Methodist University University of Tennessee
Fairfield University Southwestern University University of Texas
Florida State University Spellman College University of Texas at Arlington
Fordham University Spring Hill College University of Texas at Dallas
Franciscan University St. Edward's University University of Texas at San Antonio
George Mason University St. Gregory's University University of the Incarnate Word
Goucher College St. John's University University of Toronto
Hampton University St. Mary's University University of Waterloo
Hofstra University Stanford University Valparaiso University
Hollins University Stephen F. Austin State University Vanderbilt University
Houston Baptist University Stephens College Virginia Commonwealth University
Howard Payne University Syracuse University Warner Pacific College
Johns Hopkins University Temple University Washington State University
Kansas State University Texas A&M University West Texas A&M University
Lone Star College Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi West Virginia University
Louisiana State University Texas A&M University-Galveston Westminster College
Loyola Marymount University Texas Christian University