S. Anselm's

A full boarding and day school for boys and girls from Nursery to 16

History at S. Anselm's College

In History we study the past and the legacies of the past in the present. It connects things through time and encourages pupils to take a long view of such connections.

There are so many reasons to study History: it helps students discover how the world evolved and as it is a subject which helps develop the skills to look beyond the headlines, to ask pertinent questions and to express one's own opinions. History trains pupils’ minds and teaches how to think and process information, helping pupils to understand the origins of modern political and social problems. It also helps to hone the skills of writing with clarity and precision and being able to argue a case both on paper and in class discussion.


Year 9 History

The College History course builds upon the successful and popular approach from the Prep school, which looks at history in a number of different ways, considering the economic, political and social perspectives.

The benefits of the College is the ability to deliver an in-depth study of the Victorian era (in Year 9), giving a flavour of Victorian Britain by exploring some of the great industrialists and their innovations, before acknowledging the downsides of the Industrial Revolution such as the poor working conditions and the issue of child labour. From this platform the pupils are then introduced to key critical questions of these times such as whether the British Empire should be a source of pride, whether or not slavery was part of the success or failure of this time and what Jack the Ripper tells us about Victorian cities.

Learners also have the opportunity to investigate historical sites locally and further afield, which encourages them to put real history into context. To gain a flavour of Victorian Britain the Year 9 pupils visit the Victoria & Albert Museum in London during the Michaelmas Term, as well as the more local sites such as the mills of Cromford.



GCSE History at S. Anselm's College

Aims and objectives

The GCSE in History encourages learners to:

  • develop their interest in and enthusiasm for history and an understanding of its intrinsic value and significance
  • develop and extend their knowledge and understanding of specific historical events, periods and societies
  • acquire an understanding of different identities, including their own, within a society and an appreciation of social, cultural, religious and ethnic diversity
  • build on their understanding of the past and the diversity of human experience through experiencing a broad and balanced course of study
  • improve as effective, independent and resilient learners and as critical and reflective thinkers through a process of historical enquiry
  • develop the ability to ask relevant and considered questions about the past and to investigate historical issues critically
  • acquire an understanding of the nature of historical study, for example, that history is concerned with judgements based on available evidence and that some historical judgements may be more valid than others
  • develop their use and understanding of historical terms, concepts and skills
  • develop the ability to construct valid and realistic historical claims by using a range of sources in context
  • develop a critical appreciation of the concept of historical significance and why some people, events and developments are seen as historically significant
  • develop a critical appreciation of how and why different interpretations have been constructed about historically significant people, events and developments
  • 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
  • create their own structured accounts, selecting organising and communicating their knowledge and understanding in written narratives create their own balanced, reasoned and well substantiated extended responses

At S.Anselm’s College we plan to follow the GCSE WJEC Eduqas GCSE (9-1) in HISTORY, although this scheme is still awaiting accreditation (as are many other history specifications).


GCSE content and assessment information

Component 1: Studies in Depth

Written examinations: 2 hours (split into two papers of 1 hour duration each)

50% of qualification

  • In depth British Study: Empire, Reform and War: Britain, 1890-1918
  • In depth world study: The Voyages of Discovery and Conquest of the Americas

Component 2: Studies in Breadth

Written examinations: 2 hours (split into two papers of 45 minutes for the Period

Study and 1 hour 15 minutes for the Thematic Study)

50% of qualification

This component is in two parts:

  • Period Study; the Development of the UK, 1919-1991
  • One Thematic Study: Changes in Crime and Punishment in Britain,