Liberal Arts: An International Year with Languages, Culture and Travel

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An International Year with Languages, Culture and Travel 

A unique Finishing Programme for young women ages 17 to 19

The Liberal Arts Course at Surval Montreux provides an exclusive programme in a unique and international setting for young women, aged 17-19.

Girls who join our school for this course will be able to explore new subjects, gain experiences and develop leadership skills that will serve them well in the future, in whichever path they decide to pursue. Our course also ensures students can benefit from educational opportunities that will support their future choices. To this end, Surval girls can opt to gain additional certificates in certain subject areas.They will also have the full support of staff who are experts in advising on the best college and university choices for each individual and helping them throughout the decision-making and application process. This experience, which runs from six months to two years, also offers a unique enrichment opportunity in an inspiring setting. It allows young women who attend Surval to gain in confidence - in the nurturing environment of an international family atmosphere.  At the same time, it supports them to develop their independence - affording them every opportunity to make the most of Surval’s stunning setting and its enviable location which gives easy access to the cultural and historical centres of Europe and beyond.

For more information please view our Liberal Arts Programme flyer

Maria from Mexico talks about why she chose the Liberal Arts Programme at Surval, how it has helped her decide on her field of study at university, and about learning French in Switzerland.

Curriculum Overview

Social Enterprise and Charity

Charity is central to Surval’s Liberal Arts programme and at the heart of every student’s experience here: internationally, nationally and locally.

Locally, students have the opportunity to lend a hand at Cartons du Coeur. There they pack bags with spare food for the less fortunate or in Vevey, give free fruits and vegetables to those who cannot afford to buy it. These experiences prove very popular with our Liberal Arts girls every year and their contribution is much appreciated by the people they support. It also provides an added opportunity for the girls to practise their French.

Nationally, Surval supports Telethon, a charity which helps families with children who suffer from rare disabling diseases in Switzerland. The local Suisse Bouge 5km, which all our girls participate in, raised over CHF 800 for this charity last year which has really captured our imaginations and hearts.

On the international front, our Liberal Arts students travel to Kenya every year in partnership with the Habitat for Humanity charity. Our girls’ mission on this journey to Africa is to build houses and help transform the life of a family. In the process, they also learn a lot about themselves, and it has proven to be a thought-provoking, emotional and life-changing experience.

Arts and Culture

At Surval, we are passionate about promoting Arts and Culture; vital aspects of school life which embrace a diverse range of interests and activities. This year, our girls have had the opportunity to enjoy some wonderful experiences at the theatre. Throughout the year, our Liberal Arts students also visit La Byron Residence, a small, local home for the elderly. There they participate in many wonderful and joyous occasions with the residents of the home, including various songs, dancing, poetry and drama in French.

Communication and Media

Liberal Arts girls undertake various communications and media projects throughout the year, aimed at developing new skills and fresh perspectives in writing, critical thinking, analysis and creativity, which will serve them well in their future paths. In March 2017, to mark International Women’s Day, they used multi-media messages to explore that year’s theme of ‘Being Bold for Change’, creating and launching their own student blog to coincide with this. This encouraged our girls to share their thoughts on their global perspectives and on their role models from around the world.

Preparing Girls for Life after Surval

An integral element of the Liberal Arts curriculum here at Surval is preparing girls for university and their future careers. They benefit from the university guidance and support through a personalised approach to ensure that each girl is provided with all the tools to make informed decisions about her future. We also encourage our girls to become independent learners and thinkers so that they are prepared for student life at university or college. Many of our students go on to excellent universities and colleges worldwide, and we maintain strong contacts with some of the world’s leading universities.


Liberal Arts students have intensive French lessons each morning (English upon request) In small classes, they learn vocabulary and grammar through a mixture of formal methods and less formal ones such as films, songs and role play. Students are prepared for international recognized French DELF exams. Listening, speaking, reading and writing are all practised in lessons, and girls are encouraged to use their chosen language when they speak to teachers during the school day. Different outings are also organised throughout the week to local communities where Liberal Arts students have the opportunity to practise their French.

Academic Programmes

Programme Details

Who the programme is for: Students aged 17+ who would like an international year of languages, culture and travel before embarking on their higher education. In particular, girls who value the support to help them make informed decisions about future directions.

Programme length: One year, although girls whose school semesters have different timings can also join for six months, from January to June. We recommend the full year course to develop fluency in French, and to take full advantage of all the opportunities to immerse yourself fully in the culture and language opportunities at Surval)

Qualification: Girls will gain a course certificate for completion of their year at Surval. They may if required take SATs. IELTS or TOEFL, and the DELF examinations as well as adding one or more IGCSE subjects to enhance their University applications.

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Surval Montreux is a member of and accredited by:

nca avdep bsa cambridge
NCGS intaward swiss fed-swiss

Part of Bellevue Education

Bellevue Group