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Historians are dangerous people. They are capable of upsetting everything.”

Nikita Khrushchev

Philosophy of the department

We believe that an enquiry and evidence-based study of the past stimulates our natural curiosity. History helps us to resist the simplistic and the superficial, and to always ask pertinent questions to further understand the world around us. Through this process history makes us more informed citizens, better able to shape our futures and to make sense of our world, whether from a personal, local, national or international perspective. Without learning from history we are all doomed to make the same mistakes! Above all, History helps to makes us more articulate, more literate and more interesting!

What we expect from our students

We strongly believe that teaching and learning is a partnership, and we expect our students to be persistent in the face of challenge, to take a pride in their work and to accept advice and constructive criticism in order to grow as historians. We expect our students to be curious and have a thirst to find out more, the best history students are the ones who always ask questions!

Your teachers work hard to produce lessons with a range of different types of activities from role plays and debates, to creating news reports and board games, to writing exam questions and practising essay writing technique. We expect our students to work just as hard to complete their best possible work, whatever form it might take. We want our students to take risks and encourage them to work together in order to achieve their potential.

A good historian considers all possible sides to a debate, weighing up the evidence before reaching a conclusion and supporting it with either sources or factual knowledge. We encourage all our students to try and understand why people hold differing views and have produced different interpretations of the past, whether this is historians, politicians or other members of the class. We expect our students to develop opinions and seek to understand the opinions and actions of others. Finally, we expect all our students to live up to the LPGS expectations by always giving 100% to everything they do.

Your teachers are there to help you become effective independent learners, to develop existing strengths and overcome (or disguise!) your weaknesses - we all have them. Your teachers are very experienced and have very good knowledge of the subject and of the skills required to do well at history, from the outsight they will also have a good understanding of your potential and they will work with you to make sure you achieve this. If it sometimes seems that they are always asking you to do more, it’s because they know that you can do it! Perhaps most importantly your teachers love history, they are proud of what they know but they always want to know even more. One of the best things about teaching history is that you always get to learn more history!

Contact name: Mrs H Catterall

Key Stage 3

Our Key Stage 3 curriculum is based on the use of enquiry questions within lessons and across a series of lessons so that students can engage with the past and reach their own conclusions. At a glance the curriculum provides students with an understanding of the history of Britain and the World from the Middle Ages until the present day. We are currently in the process of updating the curriculum, however below is what each year group are studying this year:

  Autumn Spring Summer
Year 7

The Middle Ages 

  • When and what were the Middle Ages 
  • What was the world like in the Middle Ages 
  • The Benin Empire 
  • The Islamic world
  • Contenders for the Throne
  • The Battle of Hastings 
  • How did William gain control of England?

Complete the Middle Ages 

  • Religion in the Middle Ages and Thomas Becket
  • How successful was King John? 
  • Magna Carta 
  • Black Death 
  • Peasants Revolt

The Tudors 

  • Tudor Society 
  • What was the experience of black people in the Tudor period?


The Tudors and Stuarts 

  • How far did religion change during the Tudor period? 
  • The Spanish Armada 
  • The Civil War 
  • Restoration
Year 8

The Industrial Revolution

  • Reasons for the industrial revolution

  • Urbanisation

  • Life in Industrial Towns

  • Public Health

  • Medicine, including the role played by women

  • Democracy

  • The transport revolution

  • Votes for women





The Empire  

  • Reasons for Empire building.  Case studies looking at India, the West Indies, Australia, New Zealand and African colonies

  • Experience of the colonies in the British Empire, including India, New Zealand, Australia, the West Indies and African colonies

  • Interpretations of the Empire

  • Why the British Empire declined

The Fight for Female Suffrage

  • Arguments for and against women gaining the vote

  • Suffragettes and Suffragists

  • Case Study: Emily Davison

  • Women's actions during WW1

  • Why did women win the vote?

  • 1928 enfranchisement

  • Interpretations of the Suffragettes and Suffragists



Year 9

World War One

  • Causes of WW1 
  • The experience of different soldiers during WW1, including German, Turkish, Indian and black soldiers
  • The impact of WW1 on the world, including technology, women, medicine, European borders and relations
  • The Treaty of Versailles







The Inter War Years

  • Causes of the Russian Revolution
  • Democracy and dictatorships
  • The rise of Hitler

World War Two

  • Causes of WW2
  • Key turning points in WW2, including Dunkirk, the Battle of Britain, the Nazi invasion of Russia, Pearl Harbour, the atomic bomb, the enigma code and role played by Turing
  • The impact of WW2 on Britain - evacuation, rationing, women etc



The Holocaust

  • Who were the Jews of Europe?
  • What is anti-Semitism?
  • Persecution of Jews by the Nazis
  • Resistance
  • Remembrance
Race in 20th Century Britain
  • Windrush
  • British response to immigration
  • Notting Hill race riots
  • Bristol bus boycott
  • Government response to immigration


Key Stage 4: GCSE History

Year 10 and Year 11 are studying the new AQA Specification and we are completing the following topics. There are two exams which are worth 50% of the total grade each, and four topics which are worth 25% of the total grade each

Paper 1: Understanding the Modern World
America, 1920 - 1973: Opportunity and Inequality (25%)

Conflict and Tension, 1918-1939(25%)

  • The American people and the 'Boom' 
  • Bust - Americans' experiences of the Depression
  • New Deal
  • Post-World War Two America
  • Peacemaking, 1919
  • The League of Nations and International Peace
  • The Origins and Outbreak of World War Two
Paper 2: Shaping the Nation
Britain: Health & the people: c1000 - present day (25%) Elizabeth England, c1568-1603 (25%)
  • Medicine stands still
  • The beginnings of change
  • A revolution in medicine
  • Modern Medicine
  • Elizabeth's court and Parliament
  • Life in Elizabethan times
  • Troubles at home and abroad
  • The historic environment of Elizabethan England


Key Stage 5: A Level History

Description of Course

The Pearson Edexcel Level 3 Advanced GCE in History consists of three externally examined papers and coursework. The course is linear and all assessment happens at the end of the A-Level in Year 13.


Year 12: Papers 1 and 2

Papers 1 and 2 are united by the common theme (or Route F): Searching for Rights and Freedom in the Twentieth Century.

Paper 1, Option 1F: In search of the American Dream: the USA, 1917–96

The topics studied are: 

  • The changing political environment, 1917-80
  • The quest for civil rights, 1917-80
  • Society and culture in change, 1917-80
  • The changing quality of life, 1917-80
  • What impact did the Reagan presidency (1981-89) have on the USA in the years 1981-96?

The exam is comprised of:

  • One essay on a depth topic (up to ten years)
  • One essay on a breadth theme (at least a third of the time period)
  • One essay examining two different historical interpretations of Reagan.


Paper 2, Option 2F.2: South Africa, 1948–94: from apartheid state to ‘rainbow nation’.

The topics studied are: 

  • The response to apartheid, c1948-59
  • Radicalisation of resistance and consolidation of National Party Power, 1960-1968
  • Redefining resistance and challenges to National Party Power, 1968-83
  • The end of apartheid and the creation of the ‘rainbow nation, 1984-1994

The exam is comprised of:

  • One source question using two sources
  • One essay on a depth topic


Year 13: Paper 3 and Coursework

Paper 3, Option 36.1: Protest, agitation and parliamentary reform in Britain, c1780-1928

This option comprises two parts: the Aspects in breadth focus on long-term changes and contextualise the Aspects in depth , which focus in detail on key episodes.

The topics studied are:

Depth Topics:

  • Radical reformers, c1790-1819
  • Chartism, c1838-1850
  • Contagious Diseases Act and the campaign for their repeal, 1862-1886
  • The Women’s Social and Political Union, 1903-1914
  • Trade union militancy, 1917-1927

Breadth Topics

  • Reform of parliament
  • Changing influences in parliament: the impact of parliamentary reform


The exam is comprised of: 

  • One source question based on two sources
  • One essay on a depth topic (up to ten years)
  • One essay on a breadth theme


Coursework - Interpretations of the Russian Revolution

For the coursework students write one extended essay which compares different interpretations written by historians about the Russian Revolution. They complete a short content based course which starts with the reign of Nicholas II and examines the build up and reasons for the Russian Revolution. This is followed by a skills based course, which examines historiography and the different skills in comparing and evaluating interpretations. Finally students write their essay where they compare three accounts and explain the similarities and differences, the reasons for these similarities and differences and their opinion of the interpretations. The two coursework questions are:

  1. How far do you agree that the October Revolution of 1917 was a ‘coup d'état’ rather than a popular uprising?
  2. How far do you agree that Lenin was the main reason for the success of the October Revolution of 1917?

Skills Required

A historian needs to enquire beyond the obvious and the superficial. You will need to think, to listen, to read and, above all, to write analytically. You should have a grade 6 or higher in GCSE English Language. A willingness to interpret historical information, and the ability then to express your findings, whether in discussion, or in writing, are required. You should be able to analyse and to evaluate historical sources and interpretations.

Entry Qualifications

Grade 6 or above in GCSE History or in a related Humanities subject is required as well as English. Please be aware that this is a minimum requirement.


Method of Assessment

  Method Nature of Assessment Weighting
Unit 1

Written Examination

  • Option 1F: In search of the American Dream: the USA, c1917-96
  • Examination: 2 hours 15 mins
  • Essay questions
Unit 2 Written Examination
  • Option 2F.2: South Africa, 1948-94: from apartheid state to ‘rainbow nation’
  • Examination: 1 hour 30 mins
  • Essay and source-based questions
Unit 3 Written Examination
  • Option 36.1: Protest, agitation and parliamentary reform in Britain, c1780-1928
  • Examination: 2 hours 15 mins
  • Essay and source-based questions
Unit 4 Coursework
  • Interpretations of the Russian Revolution
  • Coursework essay based on historical interpretations. One piece of extended writing 3,000 - 4,000 words


Educational Progression and Career Opportunities

Success in History, at all levels, indicates an ability to present an argument (written or verbal) and to consider all the implications of complex issues. Such abilities are the foundation for any career which provides its own additional, specialist training. This explains why those with history qualifications are found not only in the more obvious areas of history teaching, archives and museum administration, but also, in greater numbers than ever, in the law, computing, the financial services, advertising, marketing, publishing, politics and so on. Any History qualification enhances employability and makes you more interesting too!

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