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Why Study History?

The History Department is committed to fostering a lifelong love of history in our students. We aim to do this by offering a curriculum that is engaging, high-quality, and diverse. Our goal is for students to feel inspired, encouraged, and connected to historical stories, enabling them to build on their knowledge and explore their own identities through history.

We want our students to develop skills that will help them understand the past and make connections to the wider world. These skills include critical thinking, evidence analysis, forming independent judgements, and empathy. By equipping students with these abilities, we aim to cultivate a lasting appreciation for history.

Curriculum Vision

In History, we aim to create a high-quality, broad, inclusive, knowledge-rich curriculum. It is a curriculum that gives students a coherent knowledge of Britain’s history and its place in the wider world through a broad range of historical themes.

Our curriculum is shaped by the diverse experiences of our students, and we explore how history relates to different societal groups, promoting tolerance, celebrating diversity, and encouraging personal links. All students access the same curriculum and, through high-quality teaching, classwork and homework, students’ knowledge and understanding of historical events is developed, enriched and secured.

Key Stage 3 - Years 7 - 9

In Year 7, we explore “The Age of Monks, Nuns and Knights”, focussing on pre-1066, the events leading to the Battle of Hastings, William I, the experiences of fourteenth-century peasants, and the impact of religious changes in the Early Modern Era.

In Year 8, we explore “The Movement of People and Goods / Culture and Praxis”, focussing on the treatment of enslaved peoples, why we are called the Black Country, the impacts of the British Empire, migration to England,  why Birmingham is famous for the Balti, and the tragedy of the Titanic.

In Year 9, we explore “Power and Conflict”, focussing on how doctors learnt to treat illness, the abolition of capital punishment, why some groups turn to terrorism, how women got the right to vote, how war shaped the Twentieth Century and the Holocaust.



Key Stage 4 - Years 10 - 11

Key Stage Four students study AQA GCSE History, building on skills and developing their essay writing and source analysis skills. 

Year 10 students study “Conflict and Tension: the inter-war years, 1918–1939”, a wider world study enabling students to understand the complex and diverse interests of individuals and states that led to the outbreak of the Second World War. They also study “Britain: Health and the People: c1000 to the present day”, a thematic study enabling students to understand how medicine and public health developed through examining causes, scale, nature and consequences of developments, their impacts and influencing factors in each time period. 

Year 11 students study “Germany, 1890–1945: Democracy and Dictatorship”, a period study focusing on the development of German politics, economics, society and culture during the period, and “Norman England, c1066–c1100”, a study of the arrival of the Normans and the establishment of their rule, including a site study.



Key Stage 5 - Years 12 - 13

In Key Stage Five, students study AQA A-Level History.  The course allows students to understand the significance of historical events, the role of individuals, and the nature of change over time through gaining a deep understanding of political, social, economic and cultural perspectives.

Curriculum Enrichment

The History Department aims to provide at least one opportunity per year group for Learning Outside the Classroom. We also endeavour to provide a list for each topic of historical places that students can visit to enrich their learning.

In Year 9, we run a trip to the battlefields in both Belgium and France. Whilst on the visit, students visit several historically significant sites from both World War I and II. This supports students’ understanding of both World Wars, develops an appreciation of the work of the Commonwealth War Graves Commission, and supports  GCSE History studies.

Students in Years 7 and 8 have the opportunity to take part in competitions, ‘Shoebox Diorama Competition’ and ‘Create a Podcast Competition’. Both competitions  increase engagement and enhance subject knowledge through using their creative and research skills.


Studying history can lead to a range of future careers, such as jobs in politics, law, research, journalism, curation, and libraries.  History can lead to these careers through developing knowledge of other cultures and developing skills in presenting information, researching, improving critical and independent thinking, communication and debating in a structured manner. Famous history graduates include Louis Theroux (documentary film-maker and author), Jonathan Ross (TV presenter), Joe Biden (US President) and Gordon Brown (ex-British Prime Minister).