History

This is achieved by the  enthusiastic and committed approach of the specialist subject staff and by the active participation of pupils, which includes:

  • dialogue in the classroom
  • research using the internet and libraries
  • paired and group investigations
  • watching documentary films
  • scrutiny of sources
  • analytical writing and problem solving exercises
  • visits to historical sites and history conferences

The skills of history (mastering of detail, clarity of thought, analytical ability and fluency) can be used throughout life in many spheres. It is through the study of history that students reach a proper understanding of our own society and our institutions. History extends the horizons of students by providing a wealth of vicarious experiences and it is enriching both as an academic and leisure pursuit. Pupils are encouraged to appreciate the recreational as well as the intellectual horizons of the subject.

Key Stage 3 (Years 7-9)

The Year 7 programme of study primarily focuses on medieval life and historical skills and looks at the following topics:

  • An introduction to history - basic skills
  • England in 1066
  • How did William the Conqueror control England?
  • Medieval life
  • Medieval Church
  • The murder of Thomas Becket
  • King John and the Magna Carta
  • The Black Death
  • The peasants revolt
  • The War of the Roses

The Year 8 programme of study focuses on the Tudors, Stuarts and eventually moves onto the Industrial Revolution. It concentrates on the following topics:

  • Henry VIII and religion
  • Mary I
  • Elizabeth I and her problems including marriage, the Spanish Armada and the poor
  • Charles I and the outbreak of the English Civil War
  • Oliver Cromwell
  • Why did the industrial revolution happen?
  • Conditions during the industrial revolution
  • The British Empire
  • Transatlantic slave trade

The Year 9 programme of study focuses on the period 1900 - 1945. The programme of study concentrates on the following:

  • Causes of World War One
  • Trench Warfare
  • The Battle of the Somme
  • Treaty of Versailles
  • Weimar Germany 1919 - 1939
  • The Rise of Hitler
  • Life in Nazi Germany
  • World War Two turning points
  • The Cold War

Key Stage 4 (GCSE)

Board: Edexcel

Year 10 sees the teaching of paper 1 and paper 3 at GCSE level. The following topics are studied in Year 10:

  • Medicine through time 1250 - present
  • Weimar and Nazi Germany 1919 - 1939

Year 11 sees the continuation of GCSE studies with the focus on paper 2. This contains the following two modules:

  • Early Elizabethan England 1558 - 1588
  • The American West 1835 - 1895

Key Stage 5 (AS/A Level)

Board: AQA

Specifications: 7041 and 7042

Year 12 study two modules that are split over two years. In Year 12 the following is studied:

  • The British Empire 1857 - 1914
  • Revolution and dictatorship: Russia

Year 13 sees the continuation of the A Level course with the addition of the NEA section - a question the students pick to answer over the period of 100 years. The following topics are studied:

  • The British Empire 1914 - 1967
  • Revolution and dictatorship: Russia

Entry Requirements

  • Grade 6 or above in GCSE History - if a student achieves a Grade 5 and wishes to carry on the subject at A Level then they will need to discuss their options with the Head of History
  • Grade 6 or above in GCSE English Language and Literature

Study Skills Required

  • Disciplined methodical approach to note-taking and reading
  • Interest in politics, social and economic issues.

Teaching Approaches

Varied:

  • Teacher exposition
  • Seminar work in which students make their own written and oral presentations
  • Discussion and debate
  • Independent research
  • Group research
  • Essay writing - with clear guidance
  • Use of primary and secondary evidence

      

Careers and Support Subjects

History is widely regarded as one of the most demanding academic disciplines which has not diluted its standards in recent years.  Universities know that students who offer A’ level History are disciplined, can assimilate a large body of significant information, can analyse and present logical written and oral presentations.  These skills are essential in any career and, therefore, History is a very good “entrée” for all the professions - most especially law, journalism, politics, media work, museum and library work, research analysts, tourism and antiquarian fields - the fine arts.

History combines well with other humanities subjects, e.g. English, Modern Languages, Religious Studies and also with Geography, Biology and Mathematics.

Progression to A2 is contingent on achieving grade C or above at AS Level and behaviour, attendance and punctuality records will also be taken into consideration.