The aim of the Department is to develop historians who experience a wide range of History at every stage of their studies and who progressively develop the passion, skills and understanding required to make sense of the past.  There are opportunities to use modern technology for discovery, presentation and sharing.  Boys consciously develop information management skills, learning to identify and use sources with discrimination and purpose.  The department values and encourages achievement at all stages.  There is an annual reading trip, for Year 14 historians, to Glasgow University.  In recent years students have been offered places to read History at top Universities including Oxford and Cambridge.  There is also a well developed programme of living History and fieldwork.  This includes visits to the World War One battlefields and Berlin where we have developed close links with local schools and students.

Years 8 – 10

Students progress from the Middle Ages to the 20th Century.  Courses combine the rigour of studies in depth with skills development.  At the end of Year 10 students will have a good knowledge of British and Irish History.  

They will also understand the basic building blocks of the study of History such as chronology, cause and effect and continuity and change.  They will be able to cope with sources, judging reliability and value.  Students will also grow to understand the meaning of the ‘big picture’ of History through the study of themes which are developed across more than one year group.  These include monarchy in years 8/9 and Parliament, Union and the Empire in Year 9.



The Schools History Project is taught at GCSE.  There are three elements to this course:

  1. Medicine through Time – This includes the themes of disease, surgery and public health.  Students cover a wide range of History from the ancient through to the modern world.  This course helps students to fully understand key elements of historical study such as the significance of chronology and determining cause and effect.
  2. Germany 1919 – 1945 – This focuses on Weimar and Nazi Germany.  This course allows students to develop a real understanding of a shorter period of History.  It stretches and challenges as boys can access the wide range of available historiography to develop a more detailed understanding of an important period.
  3. The Belfast Blitz – Controlled assessment is on this topic.  As well as having local interest this course allows students to improve their source skills, in particular their ability to judge the value of sources.

For course content, please click here. 

AS Level (OCR)

  1. The Normans in England 1066 – 1100 – A rare opportunity to study English medieval history at A Level.  Study is from the Battle of Hastings to the death of William Rufus, in a hunting accident in 1100.  This unit focuses heavily on the craft of being a historian, in particular using and understanding sources to make sense and write about the past. 
  2. Napoleon, France and Europe 1795 – 1815 – An opportunity to study one of the most significant characters in European history.  This course allows students to learn about a range of significant issues linked to Napoleon such as his rise to power, constitutional changes and his wars. 

A2 Level

  1. The Development of German Nationalism 1789 – 1919 – Study the development of Germany from a collection of over 300 states to Europe’s most important economic and military power.  The focus is very much on the ‘big picture’ with students developing an understanding of how to show cause and effect, continuity and change over a considerable period of time.
  2. The Cold War 1941 – 1954 – A study of the origins of one of the defining conflicts of the 20th century.  Includes key characters such as Churchill, Stal
  3. in and Roosevelt and also gives students the opportunity to study events that had a global significance such as the nuclear arms race.

For course content, please click here.


Mr. C. Farr
Mrs. J Hempstead
Mr. C. McIvor
Mrs. F Mottashaw