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St Alban's Catholic High School

St Alban's
Catholic High School


Department Aims

Students at St Alban’s Catholic High School will develop a passion and enthusiasm for studying History right from the start of Year 7.  Every year group has the curriculum and lesson planning designed to make them want to aspire to take History at the next level, be that into GCSE, A Level or Higher Education.  Students are provided with lessons that ensure they understand not simply the chronology of History, but the essential skills needed to succeed in the subject.  Our aim fundamentally is that History is an enjoyable subject for all students, which will equip them with the necessary concepts and skills needed to succeed at every level.

As a department we intend to:

  • Inspire curiosity to learn and understand Britain's past and that of the wider world.
  • Equip students with the historical skills to assess second order concepts, such as continuity, change, cause, consequence, significance, similarity and difference.
  • Equip students with the historical skills to assess and develop interpretations of the past supported by the historical terminology to coherently express historical viewpoints.
  • Implement their knowledge of the past to understand the wider world today.

Order of Teaching 

Order of Teaching

Years 7 to 9

Year 7



Autumn 1

What is History?

The Norman Conquest (1066-1087)

Autumn 2

Medieval England: Life and Church (1066-1300)

Spring 1

The Magna Carta and the War of the Roses (1200-1485)

Spring 2

The Tudors: Henry VII, Henry VIII, Edward VI and Mary I (1485-1558)

Summer 1

The Tudors: Elizabeth I and The Stuarts (1558-1649)

Summer 2

The English Civil War and 17th Century changes (1649-1700)

Year 8 



Autumn 1

The Slave Trade (1700-1800)

Autumn 2

The Industrial Revolution (1700-1900)

Spring 1

The British Empire (1750-1901)

Spring 2

Social and Political Reform (1800-1918)

Summer 1

The First World War (1914-1918)

Summer 2

The Inter-War Years (1918-1939)

Year 9 



Autumn 1

The Second World War (1939-1945)

Autumn 2

The Second World War and Holocaust (1939-1945)

Spring 1

The Cold War (1945-1990)

Spring 2

The Modern World (1980 – present day)


Protest in America (1950-1970)

Students are assessed every term in the following ways:

  • Knowledge test
  • Terminology test
  • A written, timed assessment.

Year 10 and 11

Exam board: Edexcel (Pearson)

Crime and Punishment in Britain, 1000-Present (including Whitechapel and Jack the Ripper case study).

Understanding how the crime and punishment system has developed and changed from the Anglo-Saxon period to the modern day.

Anglo-Saxon and Norman England 1060-1088

Analysing what Anglo-Saxon society was like and how this changed with the Norman invasion. Considering the impact William the Conqueror had on England.

The American West 1835-1895

Understanding how and why Americans settled in the west and considering the problems faced on the journey, including the treatment of Native Americans.

Weimar and Nazi Germany 1918-1939

Analysing the reasons for the fall of the Weimar government and how Hitler managed to get the Nazi Party into power. This course is particularly focused on the historical interpretations of what happened.


As GCSE History is linear examined course, every unit is tested with 3 separate exam papers at the end of Year 11. Therefore, Year 11 also has a significant focus on revision and the exam skills needed to succeed.

There are also regular assessments throughout Y10 and Y11 to support students in preparing for their final exams.


Pupil Premium Students 

All educational trips are offered for free to pupil premium students.  Students are also given free copies of the GCSE revision guide for each topic. If needed, access to a laptop can be arranged to ensure students can access our digital resources.

Microsoft Teams Revision Page 

All GCSE students have access to our Microsoft Teams revision page which offers multiple resources to help aid independent revision. These include podcasts introducing key topics, content overviews, revision activities, exam question exemplars and checklists for each course.


It is vital every student attends their history lessons with the correct equipment. All students should bring to class:

  • Pen
  • Pencil
  • Ruler
  • Rubber

Stationary packs can be purchased through parent mail.

GCSE revision guides are also available on parent mail to be purchased (Y10 and Y11 only).

A Level History 

A-level students will continue to study from the Edexcel (Pearson) exam board which compliments the skills they have been developing during GCSEs. A summary of what we cover at A level follows:



In Search of the American Dream 1917-1996


Students will learn about the dramatic political, economic and social transformation of the USA in the twentieth century, an era that saw the USA challenged by the consequences of political, economic and social inequalities at home and of its involvement in international conflict.



South Africa, 1948-1994:  From apartheid state to ‘rainbow nation’


Students will learn about South Africa during its transition from white minority rule to the free elections of 1994, a long, and at times, dramatic process in which South Africa changed from an apartheid state into a multi-racial democracy. Students will gain an in-depth understanding of the creation and consolidation of the apartheid regime by the National Party and the response and methods used by their political opponents in the struggle to overthrow apartheid, as well social, economic and cultural changes that accompanied this process.

Lancastrians, Yorkists and Henry VII, 1399-1509


Students will explore the long term causes of the Wars of the Roses by starting at Richard II’s reign.  They will then develop an understanding of the conflict and politics of the battles, analysing the challenges of over-mighty subjects and under-mighty monarchs.  Students will finish with how Henry VII brought the conflict to an end and set up the Tudor dynasty.  With an analysis of themes and source work this unit combines and develops a lot of key historical skills.

Guided coursework


The purpose of the coursework is to enable students to develop skills in the analysis and evaluation of interpretations of history in a chosen question, problem or issue as part of an independently researched assignment. The focus is on understanding the nature and purpose of the work of the historian. Students will be required to form a critical view based on relevant reading on the question, problem or issue. They will also be specifically required to analyse, explain and evaluate the interpretations of three historians.




Lessons are taught in a seminar like fashion to prepare students for University level study. Students are required to read widely around the topics and develop their learning beyond the classroom.  With three of the four units being examined at the end of Year 13, there is also a strong emphasis on revision and the higher level exam skills required to succeed at A-Level.