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Welcome To The History Department

The History Department aims to investigate the past to help our students understand and analyse the present. We endeavour to develop passionate, life-long and successful learners of all our History students.

History Department: Aims

We as a department aim to:

  • develop in young people a knowledge and understanding of people – what motivates them, what they think and how they feel.

  • empower pupils to become thinking citizens of the twenty-first century by learning to defend their views in class while listening and responding to opposing ideas.

  • enable pupils to become good communicators. Good historians have to argue their case orally and on paper.

  • develop the skills necessary to carry out historical enquiry.

  • stimulate and maintain pupil interest in the past.

  • develop skills of critical thinking.

History Department: Subject Overview

Key Stage 3

In History, pupils have opportunities to explore a variety of historical eras and topics and develop Whole Curriculum Skills and Capabilities. This encourages pupils to recognise the forces and factors that have shaped our world today.

Pupils study a broad and balanced range of historical periods from Irish, British, European, and global contexts, giving them a richer understanding of their own identity, culture and society.

Teachers encourage pupils to engage with History in an active and critical way. This helps them to assess evidence, evaluate conflicting accounts and understand the causes and consequences of change. These skills equip pupils with the capabilities to be active and engaged members of our society.

History is a very popular subject in the College. We have a team of dedicated and hardworking Department members who enthuse pupils with their love of the subject, and who aim to provide an exciting and varied range of topics for study at KS3.


Topics Studied:

Yr. 8

What is History? / History Skill

The Norman Conquest

Normans Keeping Control

Life in Medieval times

The Black Death


Yr. 9


Henry VIII

Mary, Queen of Scots

The Spanish Armada

Colonies and The Ulster Plantation

English Civil War


Yr. 10

The Twentieth Century



The Troubles in Northern Ireland

Civil Rights in the USA

Key Stage 4

There are many different reasons why students choose to study GCSE History, such as their teacher or the influence of their parents. However, there are many other important reasons why History is an excellent subject to study. The following are just a few of them.

  • You will learn about key individuals and the impact of their actions and decisions.

  • You will investigate big questions, such as:

Why did it take 30 years for the Troubles in Northern Ireland to end?
Why did so few people try to stop Hitler?
Why did the Cuban Missile Crisis bring the world to the brink of nuclear war?
What was the significance of 9/11 for international relations?

  • You will appreciate that there is not simply one version of the past but many different and often competing interpretations.

  • You will develop skills of working with evidence from the past to construct arguments and make informed judgements.

The mixture of stimulating content and the opportunity to develop valuable skills makes GCSE History one of the most popular subject choices for students.


Key Stage 5

This course aims to encourage students to: develop their interest in and enthusiasm for History; gain an appreciation of the different ways in which aspects of the past have been interpreted and develop their skills of analysis, evaluation and communication.

It is desirable that students have achieved A*- B in GCSE.

The course consists of four units, each of which is assessed by an external written examination. AS is 40% and A2 is 60% of the total allocation of marks.


Unit 1 (20%)

Germany 1919-45

In this module, students focus on the decline of the Weimar Republic, developments in Nazi Germany and the impact of World War Two. Historical source questions are included in each topic.

Unit 2 (20%)

Russia 1914-41

This option investigates the rise to power of the Bolsheviks and then looks at Russia under the rule of Lenin and Stalin.


Unit 3 (20%)

Clash of Ideologies in Europe 1900-2000

In this synoptic module, students examine the motives and aims of Soviet and Western foreign policy throughout the twentieth century.

Unit 4 (40%)

Partition of Ireland 1900-25

This option carries the largest weighting of marks. Students analyse the key developments in nationalism and unionism in Ireland and the role of British governments and political parties in this period. There are source-based questions as well as an essay in the written examination.

CCEA GCE History Specification

History Department: Careers

Studying History to degree level gives you the skills that can take you into a variety of careers from museum and heritage work to teaching or accountancy.

History Department:

Educational Visits & Trips

History Department: Gallery

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