• Austin

  • New York

  • San Francisco

  • Book a Tour at ATI Austin

    Thanks for your interest in Academy of Thought and Industry - Austin. For a personalized tour of our campus, or to have a phone call with our admissions team, please make selections below. We’ll be in touch with you to confirm your meeting.

  • Book a Tour at ATI Manhattan

    Thanks for your interest in Academy of Thought and Industry - Manhattan. For a personalized tour of our campus, or to have a phone call with our admissions team, please make selections below. We’ll be in touch with you to confirm your meeting.

  • Book a Tour at ATI San Francisco

    Thanks for your interest in Academy of Thought and Industry - San Francisco. For a personalized tour of our campus, or to have a phone call with our admissions team, please make selections below. We’ll be in touch with you to confirm your meeting.

ATI Programs

Each aspect of our program is designed to enable students to cultivate personal, academic, and professional excellence.

  • Core Program

  • Academic Courses

  • Project Courses

  • ATI students working over laptops

    The foundations needed to succeed in college and life

    Our core consists of: (1) Life Design, inspired by Stanford's Designing Your Life course; Y Combinator founder Paul Graham's exhortation to “live in the future”; Cal Newport's work on “Leading a Remarkable Life” and Jon Kabat-Zinn's work on stressed teens. (2). Socratic Humanities develops a student's ability to analyze complex texts and become a capable writer of analytic essays while exploring the world of ideas via classroom Socratic dialogues, inspired by ATI founder Michael Strong's book, The Habit of Thought. (3) Mathematical problem-solving combines a personalized, self-paced math program with the development of broad mathematical problem-solving abilities inspired by Polya's How to Solve It.

  • ATI students working over laptops

    Idea-driven academics covering standard and innovative topics

    The liberal arts curriculum was designed to liberate students from the parochial considerations of time and place. The purpose of studying the sciences, history, literature, etc., was to broaden students' horizons by means of exposure to the critical ideas that have led us to where we are today. Although our courses may be taken as preparation for Advanced Placement exams, the goal is to connect students to the world of ideas, not merely to prepare for tests (though our students do well on AP exams). We also offer innovative academic courses, including Asian religions, digital media literacy, philosophy, and so on.

  • An ATI student working with a circuit board

    Focused skills development leading to real world projects

    Our project-based courses provide students with the skills needed in real world domains such as design, entrepreneurship, programming, film, photography, graphic design, etc. so that they can create in the real world. The courses often feature individual projects early on so that students are applying the relevant skills in a way that is personally interesting to them. As they refine their skills, they are encouraged to move from classroom projects to be shared only with classmates, to more substantial projects to be shared with the community, and finally on to professional-level projects that are credible by adult professional standards.

ATI Academic Courses

Science, history, literature, foreign language and innovative options beyond conventional high school curricula. Below, a sampling of the courses offered across our campuses during the 2018-19 academic year.

  • World History

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    Chemistry workshop setup in an ATI classroom

    A rich, idea-driven exploration of world history and civilizations

    Using an eclectic mix of articles, art history from civilizations around the world, maps and geography study, and class discussion, students explore major themes of world history, religion, and civilizations. The program is aligned with the content of the College Board’s AP World History examination. Ambitious students are encouraged and supported to take this exam after completion of the course.

    • Offered at:
    • ATI San Francisco
  • United States History

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    A student reading a U.S. History curriculum book at ATI

    Looking to the history of the United States to understand modern culture

    This class traces the path of current events through pre-colonial times in America. We will discover how major events in our history shaped our current understanding of the world and extrapolate on what might have been if things had been different.

    • Offered at:
    • ATI Austin
  • Chemistry

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    Chemistry workshop setup in an ATI classroom

    Project-based Chemistry

    Our ATI San Francisco chemistry course starts with studenting gather magnetite from the beaches of San Francisco Bay, which they in turn transform into “Valyrian steel” in a crucible. They then study the stoichiometry involved in this transformation and continue onward through the basics of chemistry using a variety of projects to explore how chemical transformations take place. The program is aligned with the content of the College Board's AP Chemistry examination. Ambitious students are encouraged and supported to take this exam after completion of the course.

    • Offered at:
    • ATI Austin
    • ATI San Francisco
  • Digital Media Literacy

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    A desktop computer in an ATI classroom

    A thoughtful approach to the world of digital media

    During this class, students will apply critical thinking skills to digital media. As a class they will analyze film, television, music, websites, YouTube videos and more. By the end of the course students will be critically engaged creators with their own digital works.

    • Offered at:
    • ATI Austin
  • Art as Human Narrative

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    A pile of literature books on an ATI student's desk

    Awakening each student's desire to seek purpose and create meaning

    In this course, students will reflect carefully on their own narratives and question whether or not their narratives encompass, support, and sustain these deep human yearnings. This process of awakening will occur through continued exposure to and analysis of the creative works of others, as well as through continued, hands-on practice creating works of art, poetry, photography, music, etc. of their own.

    • Offered at:
    • ATI Austin
  • The Psychology of Romantic Relationships

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    Students holding hands

    An academic study with real-world application for teens

    This course is organized around two main academic goals: (1) to understand and appreciate the broad domain of scientific theory and research in the psychology of romantic relationships, and (2) to consider how a scientific understanding of romantic relationships might be helpful in improving our own personal relationships.

    • Offered at:
    • ATI Austin

ATI Project Courses

The unique and inspired student experience at ATI involves the following project courses for 2018-19.

  • Entrepreneurship and Business Design

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    ATI students working on an app

    Learning the basics of what it means to be an entrepreneur

    A project-based class in which students learn the basics of entrepreneurship, including developing an idea and formalizing it into a real-world business. Resources used to get students to the stage of a workable business idea include John Chisholm's Unleash Your Inner Company and Steve Blank's Stanford course How to Build a Startup.

    A variety of topics will be explored, from marketing to sourcing goods, all in a practical context. Students will be given the freedom to pursue their own business passions, with support and feedback from community business owners both local and remote.

    • Offered at:
    • ATI Austin
    • ATI San Francisco
  • Makerspace

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    A makerspace at ATI San Francisco

    A collaborative work space for making, learning, exploring, and sharing

    ATI's makerspace embodies the mindset of creating something out of nothing and exploring one's own interests. These spaces also help to prepare those who need the critical 21st century skills in the fields of science, technology, engineering and math (STEM). They provide hands on learning, help with critical thinking skills, and self-expression. Some of the skills that are learned in a makerspace pertain to (but are not limited to) electronics, 3D printing, 3D modeling, coding, robotics, and woodworking.

    • Offered at:
    • ATI Austin
    • ATI San Francisco
  • Film

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    An ATI student working on their film project


    A project-based film class in which students are encouraged to focus on their own domain of expertise within film (e.g., filming, editing, screenwriting, acting, etc.) as well as work together on group film projects so they gain experience working as part of a film crew. From time to time there are opportunities to work on professional film sets. The course culminates with a presentation of completed film projects.

    • Offered at:
    • ATI San Francisco
  • Art Studio Practice

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    Overhead shot of an art desk in an ATI classroom

    Art Studio Practice

    A project-based class in which students learn the basics of pencil drawing, charcoal, oil painting, and watercolor. The students work on personal projects with the goal of extending their technique in each discipline as well as their range of stylistic experimentation. Students learn to appreciate and discuss their own work and that of peers in a constructive manner. Students display completed art work at the end of the course.

  • Design

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    An ATI student designer


    A project-based class in which students learn the elements of design, are exposed to numerous models of innovative design, and learn to see the role that design plays in diverse industries, crafts, technologies, and other domains. As students learn core design principles, they develop individual design projects based around their own interests. These may be in radically different domains in a given class including art, fashion, technology, etc. Students learn to appreciate and comment constructively on each other’s design projects. Students display completed design work at the end of the course.

Independent Project Coaching

Substantial student projects beyond the curriculum coached by guides and experts in our network.

A student being coached by an ATI teacher

An Empowering Education

Students who are ready to engage in a serious project beyond course offerings are encouraged to engage in coached independent projects. The goal of such projects is for students to work with an expert, either among our guides or in our larger network, to develop professional-level skills, products, services, and performances.  These projects may form a critical element in a college admissions portfolio if sufficiently impressive by adult professional standards.

Student Life at ATI

The unique and inspired individual student experience at ATI supports each student to excel at things that matter to them.

  • Daily Schedule

  • Weekly Schedule

  • Clubs

  • Core program daily — followed by academic and project elective courses

    Each day the student attends Life Design, Socratic Humanities, and Mathematical Problem-Solving. Later in the day, students may choose from among their preferred academic or project-based courses, each of which typically meets either M-W or T-Th. Students have an hour of lunch at noon. They may also choose to come in from 9–10 a.m. for personalized math tutoring or independent work. From 4–5 p.m. there are student-driven club activities.

  • Designed for a teen’s sleep cycle and ease of commuting

    Our schedule is consistent with research showing that teens need to start their mornings later. It also helps students avoid morning rush hour and may help improve commute times. On Fridays, students may select from a variety of additional elective academic and project courses, offered in a dialogue format by ATI staff across our campus network along with ATI students. Students may also use the time for internships, apprenticeships, individual projects, or homework.

  • Student driven options based on local resources

    Students are leaders in our community, both with respect to how the community runs as well as with respect to outside and after-school and outside club activities. Depending on student interest, leadership, and participation we've had students learn yoga, swing dancing, parkour, ultimate Frisbee, bicycling, cooking, gardening, board games, and a wide variety of other activities together.

ATI Guides

Gifted, passionate, and committed, our guides are posted at each campus, but often work across campuses and hold online courses for students in the ATI network.

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