At Key Stage 4 students study the new Edexcel History 9-1. The GCSE consists of three exam papers with the weighting split 30%/40%/30%. The GCSE builds upon the skills that students develop throughout year 7, 8 and 9 whilst preparing them for ‘A’ level courses. As a department we have recently reviewed and amended our schemes of work at KS4 so that students get a fully chronological overview of history which we help with their understanding of the GCSE topics.
The GCSE requires students to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the historical periods and their chronology, through making connections and comparisons between different aspects of the periods, themes and topics studied.
Throughout the course students will be learning to analyse and evaluate the causes and consequences, and changes and developments of historical events and situations. Students will also learn to assess the significance of individuals, events, developments and ideas through the units they study.
Students in History receive 3 lessons a week in both year 10 and 11.
The following shows the breakdown of the units we study throughout Key Stage 4.
Paper 1: Crime and Punishment in Britain c1000-present with Whitechapel c1870-c1900: crime, policing and punishment. (1 hour 15 mins)
This paper is a thematic breadth topic which covers themes such as the nature of criminal activity, punishment and law enforcement across time. Students also study a historic environment linked to the thematic unit, this is Whitechapel. The questions for this section are designed to test student’s ability to use historical sources.
Paper 2: (1hour 45 mins)
British depth study(20%) – Anglo-Saxon and Norman England c1060-88
The depth study focuses on a substantial and coherent short time span and requires students to understand the complexity of a society or historical situation.
Period Study (20%) - Superpower relations and the Cold War 1941-1991
The period study focuses on a time span of at least 50 years and requires students to understand the unfolding narrative of substantial developments and issues associated with the period.
Paper 3: Weimar and Nazi Germany 1918-39 (1 hour 20 mins)
This is the modern depth study which focuses on student’s ability to use sources and interpretations to explore a topic.
At Key Stage 4, students have the opportunity to study the new OCR Ancient History 9-1. The GCSE consists of two exam papers, with the weighting split 50%/50%.
Studying Ancient History helps learners develop their understanding of the ancient world and the legacy of the ancient world in today’s society. It provides engaging and exciting content which looks at characters that have shaped the course of History, such as Cyrus the Great and Alexander the Great, and defining events including the Battle of Thermopylae, the foundation of Rome and the expansion of the Macedonian Empire.
Throughout the course, students will be learning to analyse and evaluate the causes, consequences and significance of historical events. Moreover, students will also learn to analyse key ancient historical sources such as mosaics, sarcophagus’, astronomical calendars and key writings from Herodotus, Arrian and Plutarch.
Students in Ancient History receive 3 lessons a week in both year 10 and 11.
The following shows a breakdown on the units we study throughout Key Stage 4:
Paper 1: The Persian Empire 559-465BC and Alexander the Great 356-323BC (1 hour 45 minutes)
This paper is a combination of two topics. The Persian Empire is a period study focusing on the Persian Empire under Cyrus the Great, Cambyses II, Darius I and Xerxes I. The second component is a depth study, focusing on Alexander the Great and the expansion of the Macedonian empire.
Paper 2: The foundations of Rome: from kinship to republic 753-440BC and Cleopatra: Egypt and Rome 69BC-30BC. (1 hours 45 minutes)
This paper is a combination of two topics. The foundations of Rome is a longer period study focusing on the kings of Rome and the early Roman Republic, with an emphasis on the most exciting and interesting events and characters. The second component focuses on the relationship between Egypt and Rome, and the role of key figures such as Cleopatra, Julius Caesar and Mark Antony, which ultimately led to the demise of the Roman Republic.