What do we study?
The AQA course we follow allows us to explore two historical events of critical importance in helping us to understand the modern world with all it’s complexities and misconceptions. The Industrial period brought great opportunities for the world but also ushered in a period of unimaginable social and economic change. We study one depth subject where we can look at the intricacies of a country in turmoil as well as a breadth topic where we see History unravel over a longer period of time. This is supplemented by our independent Non-examined Assessment.
History sometimes is best understood when seen in its larger context. This is perhaps best exemplified by the rise and fall of the British Empire. Learning about the British Empire helps us to understand Britain’s current place in the world as well as some of it’s difficulties as I grapples with it’s colonial past. It also a way of understanding the concept of Empire and why Empires seems to inevitable rise and fall. Key to forging an understanding this topic comes through the ability to understand different interpretations of the past, an argument which still rages today in regards to the British Empire. Students will be expected to understand the difficulties in coming to a unanimous view of the past.
The 20th Century was one like no other as the world transformed and two world wars raged. Through the exploration of Weimar Germany we learn about how the breeding ground of for the rise of Nazism came about as well as going on to explore the functioning of a despotic regime in the 1930s and 40s which was to drag the world in back war with a deeper exploration of the genocide that followed. Students will be tasked with analysing primary sources to understand how people viewed the circumstances they lived through and why it is so difficult to gauge a universal view of life in Weimar and Nazi Germany.
While examinations make up 80% of the course there is still room for independent study in regards to coursework. Students are tasked with exploring a period outside of the ones they are studying in their two examination components. This is a chance for students to prepare for University and create an enquiry which helps them to transform from a collaborator to an independent researcher.
Beyond the curriculum
Students benefit from a range of materials made available by the History Department and the Librarian to ensure they are able to extend their learning beyond the confines of the classroom. Access to online journals and an expertly selected series of literature in the library help students to further their grasp of detail.
Our study of Empire opens up a range of opportunities for us to explore the rich cultural traditions of London. With exhibitions at the Imperial War Museum and the British Museum allowing students to view at first hand some of the primary material through which of understanding of the past is based on. Trips to Berlin have been previously arranged and we are eager to ensure that the opportunity to explore far and wide is maintained.
Where can History take you
History is a subject that demands reason and logic is at the heart of the conclusions we draw of the past. The level of analysis required as well as the abilities to place events in their context mean careers in Law, the Media and Politics are common professions for History graduates. History has the added benefit at University of being extremely diverse and allowing students huge scope to learn about modern phenomena to ancient regimes. This breadth of knowledge in regards to economic, social and political events ensure History students are well equipped to deal with the modern world where young people are tasked with being global citizens.