Curriculum - History

GCSE


What course do we follow?

AQA History

What will I learn?

GCSE History helps pupils to develop valuable academic and life skills. During the course, they will be encouraged to develop their powers of investigation; analysis of evidence and events; logical thought, clear communication of information; interpretation of a variety of data in the form of graphs, statistics, photographs, etc. Pupils should thus be able to reach informed decisions, appreciate different points of view and be able to analyse information and argue a case well.

Overall, the study of History at GCSE Level will provide pupils with a deeper understanding of the world in which they live, the people who occupy it and the skills needed for employment or higher education, through a relevant, varied and interesting two year course of study.

Paper 1: Understanding the Modern World

Section A: A Period Study: Germany 1890-1945: The Kaiser’s government and the impact of the First World War; development of Weimar democracy and the challenges to it; the impact of the Great Depression and the rise of Hitler, life in Nazi Germany and the impact of the Second World War.

Section B: Wider World Depth Study: Conflict and Tension 1918-39: The Treaty Versailles; the League of Nations and it’s attempts to keep peace; The origins and outbreak of the Second World War.

 Paper 2: Shaping the Nation

Section A: A Thematic Study: Britain: Health and the people c1000 to the present day: Medieval medicine including public health/epidemics and the contribution of Christianity and Islam to progress; beginning of change from the Renaissance the 19th century including prevention and the impact of war; the revolution in medicine in the late 19th century including germ theory, anaesthetics and antiseptics; modern medicine including penicillin, X-rays and the NHS.

Section B: A British Depth Study the Historic Environment and Elizabethan England 1568-1603:
Elizabeth’s court and parliament, (difficulties for a female ruler), life in Elizabethan time, (fashion, theatre, poverty, exploration etc), troubles at home and  abroad, (Religion, rebellion, plot, Mary Queen of Scots, The Armada), the historic environment of Elizabethan England, (a study of a specific site).

How will I be assessed?

Pupils will be assessed through examination at the end of the two year course. The examination consists of two papers:

Paper 1: Understanding the Modern World: 1 hour 45mins – 84- marks – 50%
Pupils will be required to answer 6 questions in section A and 4 in section B.

Paper 2: Shaping the Nation: 1 hour 45mins – 84- marks – 50%
Pupils will be required to answer 4 questions in section A and 4 in section B.

What resources are used?

There will be an AQA approved textbook for all 4 topics. VLE: AQA specimen papers and mark schemes. Top tips for how to answer each type of exam question, revision quizzes for each topic.

How will this subject help me in the future?

Good GCSE pass can lead onto A level History, but is also a good foundation for any other A level which involves analysis and evaluation of evidence , such as English, Ethics and Psychology. Pupils who progress from taking A level History to taking a degree in the subject have a wide variety of career opportunities because employers know that historians are self-motivated, able to assimilate information from a wide variety of sources and to carefully evaluate evidence before making judgements.

 

GCE A Level


A Level History offers students the opportunity to study three of the most interesting periods in European and British history.

Russia, during the 19th and 20th centuries, is the focus of the European course whilst the British History course deals with the Wars of the Roses and the coursework focus is the English Reformation.

It is compulsory for A Level History to study both European and BritishHistory. An optional AS qualification is available, however, it will not count towards the final A Level. The A Level is a two-year course with all components assessed at the end of the second year.

European History

Component 1: A Breadth study – Tsarist and Communist Russia 1855-1964.

There will be the opportunity to study the following issues:

  • Trying to preserve autocracy in the reigns of Alexander II and III 1855-1894
  • The collapse of autocracy under Nicholas II and the 1917 Revolution 1894-1917
  • The emergence of Communist dictatorship under Lenin and Stalin 1917-41
  • The Stalinist dictatorship and the impact of his death 1941-1964

British History

Component 2: A Depth study – The Wars of the Roses 1450-99.

There will be the opportunity to study the following issues:

  • The Origins of the conflict in the reign of Henry VI 1450-1459
  • The War of the Barons and Henry VI’s fall from power 1459-1461
  • The triumph of the Yorkists in the first reign of Edward IV and the attempts of Warwick The Kingmaker to restore Henry VI 1461-1471
  • ‘The Sun in Splendour’: the reign of Edward IV 1471-83
  • The downfall of the Yorkist monarchy 1483-1486
  • The end of the Yorkist Dynasty 1486-1499

Historical Investigation Component 3: Coursework – The English Reformation 1509 to 1611.

Students will be required to independently investigate this topic and answer the following essay question in approximately 3,000 words:

‘Within the context of the period 1509-1611, how far can it be argued that the Elizabethan Church settlement provided an effective solution to the unstable situation she inherited?’

They will all do the same question and will be assigned a tutor to monitor their progress. There will be no taught content.

This investigation must show understanding of change and continuity within the context of the whole period, not just in Elizabeth’s reign and will focus primarily upon opposition to and support for the changes being made by each Tudor monarch.

As a traditional academic discipline, History is highly regarded by most employers and can lead to a career in law, journalism, politics, marketing, management, the Civil Service and many other areas.

GCE A Level


A Level History offers students the opportunity to study three of the most interesting periods in European and British history.

Russia, during the 19th and 20th centuries, is the focus of the European course whilst the British History course deals with the Wars of the Roses and the coursework focus is the English Reformation.

It is compulsory for A Level History to study both European and BritishHistory. An optional AS qualification is available, however, it will not count towards the final A Level. The A Level is a two-year course with all components assessed at the end of the second year.

European History

Component 1: A Breadth study – Tsarist and Communist Russia 1855-1964.

There will be the opportunity to study the following issues:

  • Trying to preserve autocracy in the reigns of Alexander II and III 1855-1894
  • The collapse of autocracy under Nicholas II and the 1917 Revolution 1894-1917
  • The emergence of Communist dictatorship under Lenin and Stalin 1917-41
  • The Stalinist dictatorship and the impact of his death 1941-1964

British History

Component 2: A Depth study – The Wars of the Roses 1450-99.

There will be the opportunity to study the following issues:

  • The Origins of the conflict in the reign of Henry VI 1450-1459
  • The War of the Barons and Henry VI’s fall from power 1459-1461
  • The triumph of the Yorkists in the first reign of Edward IV and the attempts of Warwick The Kingmaker to restore Henry VI 1461-1471
  • ‘The Sun in Splendour’: the reign of Edward IV 1471-83
  • The downfall of the Yorkist monarchy 1483-1486
  • The end of the Yorkist Dynasty 1486-1499

Historical Investigation Component 3: Coursework – The English Reformation 1509 to 1611.

Students will be required to independently investigate this topic and answer the following essay question in approximately 3,000 words:

‘Within the context of the period 1509-1611, how far can it be argued that the Elizabethan Church settlement provided an effective solution to the unstable situation she inherited?’

They will all do the same question and will be assigned a tutor to monitor their progress. There will be no taught content.

This investigation must show understanding of change and continuity within the context of the whole period, not just in Elizabeth’s reign and will focus primarily upon opposition to and support for the changes being made by each Tudor monarch.

As a traditional academic discipline, History is highly regarded by most employers and can lead to a career in law, journalism, politics, marketing, management, the Civil Service and many other areas.