KS5 History

Year 12

Students will study two units in which they will be examined on at the end of Year 13.

Unit 1: Historical Themes in Breadth.

These units concentrate on the theme of searching for rights and freedoms in the 20th century, with particular emphasis on how America develops after World War One as a super power. The second unit looks at South Africa and how it is affected by Apartheid from 1948.

Both these units enable students to understand the importance of ideas and beliefs in the policies developed by states, how and why ideology is frequently a cause of both challenge and conflict, within and between states, and also gives rise to debates about the rights of citizens in order to gain a broad overview of a particular theme.

In Search of the American Dream: the USA, c1917-96

  • The social and economic position of African Americans in the USA in the 1940s and early 1950s: the nature and extent of discrimination and segregation; signs of change by 1968.
  • The changing political environment, 1917-80
  • Society and culture in change, 1917-80
  • The changing quality of life, 1917-80
  • The impact of the Reagan presidency, 1981-96

South Africa, 1948-94: from apartheid state to ‘rainbow nation’

In this unit, students will study South Africa history in some depth. Grounded in an exploration of source material in its historical context, students will develop an in-depth understanding of the attitudes, beliefs and structures of the South African society during Apartheid.

In working with selected sources, students will be required to demonstrate evidence skills which enable them to make reasoned and supported judgements and to address a historical view or claim.

  • The introduction and response to Apartheid, c1948-59
  • Radicalisation of resistance and the consolidation of National Party power, 1960-68
  • Redefining resistance and challenges to National Party power, 1968-83
  • The end of Apartheid and the creation of the ‘rainbow nation’, 1984-94

Year 13

Students will study another two units one of which will be examined as coursework and the other as an exam at the end of Year 13.

Unit 3

Public Health, Poverty and the State

  • Problems with public health linked to the Industrial Revolution
  • Increase in understanding about public health e.g. John Snow
  • Attitudes towards public health
  • Government intervention by 1900
  • How were paupers treated before 1782?
  • Workhouses and the Poor Law
  • Social reforms 1880-1914

Unit 4

The Middle East Conflict, 1900-2001

  • Why is the Middle East such a volatile area?
  • British involvement – WW1, Mandate of Palestine
  • Impact of the Creation of the State of Israel
  • Suez Crisis
  • 6 day war
  • War of Yom Kippur
  • Terrorism in the Middle East
  • Peace Treaties of the 1990s

Homework: In History, students are set a variety of tasks for homework. These might include: report writing; information leaflets; model building; historical research into specific topics; source analysis; past paper exam questions; reading; watching a specific documentary; paragraphing.

Other Useful Information

5 ways I can help my son/daughter


Talk to your child about what they have been studying in school. Ask them to explain key concepts to you.


Debate topical issues, demonstrating a balanced argument.


Help to support in ensuring all work/files are organised and that students are recapping at home, on what they have learnt that week.


Encourage them to read around the subject.


Talk to them about their progress and attainment.