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History at Ursuline College

History is not only about our past, it informs our present and shapes all our futures.  1Our aim in the History Department is to produce historians who are able to make well rounded judgements. By emphasising the concepts of change and continuity in our teaching we are promoting essential analytical skills. 

Studying History gives students skills which go beyond the classroom and the study of the past.  Skills of analysis are valuable in employment, and the ability to analyse and then prioritise information is crucial in developing students’ leadership abilities.  History is a subject that provides students with a skills set which is of benefit across the curriculum and enables them to keep their career options open.

Key Stage 3

At Key Stage 3 all students study History for four lessons a fortnight.  Our curriculum begins with a study of Medieval Britain and ends by analysing significant events of the 20th century.  History is taught both chronologically and thematically.


Term 1

Term 2

Term 3

Term 4

Term 5

Term 6

Year 7

Introduction to History and Depth Study of 1066

Norman Control of England

Breadth Study: Life in the Middle Ages

Depth and Local Study: The role of the Church and the murder of Thomas Becket

Breadth Study: What impact did Tudor Monarchs have on England?

Depth Study: How did the Civil War affect the power of the Monarchy?

Year 8

Introduction to Britain from 1750-1900 (Factory conditions and Living Conditions)

Britain from 1750-1900 (Medicine, Crime and Punishment, Transport, Leisure, Empire)

The First World War (The Outbreak of War, Trench Warfare, Battle of the Somme)

The Rise of Hitler and life in Nazi Germany (Education and Youth, Women, The Jews, the Olympic Games 1936)

World War 2 (Blitzkreig, Dunkirk Evacuation, Battle of Britain, the Blitz)

World War 2 (The Holocaust) and the end of the 20th century (significant developments – Martin Luther King, the moon landings, the internet, terrorism)


Key Stage 4

From Year 9 students will have the option to take History as a GCSE. We follow the WJEC Eduqas specification. Revision sessions for Year 11 students will run after school throughout the academic year. There are regular trips to Berlin to study the history of Nazi Germany. There is also a requirement of the Thematic study in Component 2 to study an historic site.


Brandenburg Gate - Berlin Trip

For more information about this course follow the link below:


The GCSE History course is made up of two Components:

Component 1: Studies in Depth

This component is in two parts and students will study one element of British History 4and one non-British History from different historical eras. For the British element students will study The Elizabethan Age from 1558-1603. For the non-British element students will study Germany in Transition from 1919-1939, where they will focus on the rise of the Nazi Party and life in Hitler’s Germany.

5Component 2: Studies in Breadth

This component is split into two parts and students will carry out a Period Study and a Thematic Study.  The Period Study will be The Development of the USA from 1929 to 2000 and the Thematic Study will be focused on Changes in Crime and Punishment in Britain from around the year 500 to the present day.


Component 1: Studies in Depth

Two written examinations of 2 hours (split into two papers of 1 hour duration each). This accounts for 50% of the qualification.

Component 2:

Two Written examinations of 2 hours (split into two papers of 45 minutes for the Period Study and 1 hour 15 minutes for the Thematic Study). This accounts for 50% of qualification.

Quotes from students studying History at Ursuline College:

Emily Year 11

'History is a well-supported subject with great teachers, that are always there to help. The GCSE History course covers the USA, Germany, Crime and Punishment and the Elizabethan age. This gives us a range of knowledge and many components. After school revision sessions are offered to us which give us extra support and boost our confidence for exams. History at Ursuline is one of my favourite subjects and in my opinion should be taken by everyone.'


Gabrielle Year 11

'History at Ursuline College is my favourite subject and it is a great option to choose. The History teachers are really helpful and supportive. The topics we cover are wide ranging from 500AD right up to the present day. History is a useful and interesting subject – not only is it great to learn what the world was like but also to see how it affects us now.'


Ellen Year 11

'I have loved History since Year 7 and my interest has only grown with each year. The topics cover a variety of time periods as well as political, social and cultural issues and changes within them in enough detail that I feel I come away from each lesson with a new perspective on the world we live in today. Every lesson is informative and instils in me a new admiration for the subject and our shared past. The excitement and enthusiasm of our teachers contribute to the atmosphere in and out of lessons, encouraging me to extend my learning and push my academic boundaries until I achieve the best I can.'