Qualification:  History GCSE


Exam Board: Edexcel

Assessment Method (coursework/exam breakdown):

Paper One: Written examination (30% of final mark)

Paper Two: Written examination (40% of final mark)

Paper Three: Written examination (30% of final mark)


Contact teacher:  Mr A Hammond


Course outline:

Paper One: Thematic study and the historical environment (30% of final mark)

Crime and Punishment in Britain c1000 – present day.

Have you ever wondered why we have laws in the UK? How did we decide on what is legal / illegal? How should we  punish people who break the law? Who has the right to decide on what is ‘right or wrong?’

These are some of the big questions you will analyse in the study of Crime and Punishment. This breadth study of over a thousand year will  focus on the thematic investigation of Change and Continuity; how have the concepts of crime, punishment and law enforcement changed and evolved over a millennium? From the midsts of the Dark Ages to the glory of the Enlightenment, from the transportation ships of Australia to the hovels of Whitechapel, from the gallows of the ‘Bloody Code’ to the ideas of rehabilitation in the 21st century, all learners will have the opportunity to evaluate this fascinating study of History.


The study is broken down into key periods:

  • 1000 – 1500
  • 1500 – 1700
  • 1700 – 1900
  • 1900 – present day

All learners will have the chance to investigate one of the most infamous figures in History, Jack the Ripper, and evaluate the impact that the failing of that case had on the development of modern policing.


Paper Two: Period Study and British depth study (40% of the final mark)


Early Elizabethan England, 1558 – 1588

One of England’s most famous monarchs; vain, ‘Virgin Queen’, victor of the Armada, and notoriously jealous. But just how accurate is this traditional narrative?

This study of one of England’s most influential monarchs aims to challenge our existing stereotypes of a female ruler who can genuinely claim to have changed the course of History.



The American West, c1835 – c1895


Today America is the sole ‘superpower’ of the 21st century. Many historians claim that the 20th century belonged to the USA, the world we now live in has been shaped by American values and ideas. The question is how did this happen?

This Paper charts the beginnings of American exploration and the ‘Great Push West’. The investigation begins with a detailed enquiry into life before the ‘coming of Europeans’ and the beliefs and Plains Indian way of life. The investigation then moves into the ‘Development of the Plains’, the coming of the cattle industry and the birth of an American icon, the ‘Cowboy’. We then start to evaluate the changes that were taking place to the Plains Indians way of life. Finally, we study the period of ‘Conflict and Conquest’ that saw the complete destruction of the Plains Indians way of life and full exploitation of the West by settlers.

A challenging and emotive study, this Paper will appeal to those learners key to make parallels between the past and the  modern day.


Paper Three: Modern Depth Study (30% of final mark)


Weimar and Nazi Germany, 1919 – 1939


How does a democracy die? How can a single politician enrapture a nation and lead them down a path that resulted in one of the greatest atrocities in human History?

With some worrying reflections on politics in the 21st century, learners will embark on a detailed study in the History of Germany in the first half of the 20th century. From the trauma of defeat in WW1 and the hopeful beginnings of democracy under the new Weimar Constitution, we evaluate how the new Germany state enjoyed the ‘Golden Years’ under Stresemann, only to be utterly ruined by international finance in 1929. we then chart the rise of an unknown political dissident from Austria, who used populist policies to galvanize a movement around himself that would enable him to seize power legally in 1933 and fulfil his promise to ‘destroy democracy from within’. From here we analyse how Hitler was able to build a totalitarian dictatorship that helped to lead the world back to war in 1939.


Post-16 Opportunities :

Education and Teaching



Research and Development

Marketing and Analysis

Publication and Research

OCR History A Level


What is the ethos of our A Level?

We aim to ensure:


All students will:


  • Study the history of more than one country or state in addition to the study of British history
  • Undertake a thematic study, covering an extended period of history of approximately 100 years
  • Explore a topic in history they have an interest in through the coursework element.
  • Our aim is to create independent learners, critical thinkers and decision-makers – all personal assets that can make them stand out as they progress to higher education and/or the workplace.


What will  our A Level provide for all learners?


The encouragement to:


  • develop their interest in and enthusiasm for history and an understanding of its intrinsic value and significance
  • acquire an understanding of different identities within society and an appreciation of aspects such as social, cultural, religious and ethnic diversity, as appropriate
  • build on their understanding of the past through experiencing a broad and balanced course of study
  • improve as effective and independent learners and as critical and reflective thinkers with curious and enquiring minds develop the ability to ask relevant and significant questions about the past and to research them
  • acquire an understanding of the nature of historical study, for example that history is concerned with judgements based on available evidence and that historical judgements are provisional
  • develop their use and understanding of historical terms, concepts and skills
  • make links and draw comparisons within and/or across different periods and aspects of the past
  • organise and communicate their historical knowledge and understanding in different ways, arguing a case and reaching substantiated judgements.

Download the History ‘Content & Assessment Overview’: