Year 9 Options - History


History will teach you a wide range of skills that are valuable in many jobs and in everyday life.

GCSE History is highly regarded amongst employers, colleges and universities.  The topics covered are themselves interesting and help to develop many skills.  You will be much more critical of what you read or hear on the news and it will develop your abilities to reason and argue your point of view with supporting information.  You will enjoy History GCSE if you are interested in finding out how people’s lives have changed and how people in the past may have thought differently from us. If you have enjoyed History in your first years at Westfield Academy, you will probably enjoy it even more at GCSE level.


The syllabus we follow is OCR History B (Schools History Project).  Below are details of what we cover:

  • Students will study The People’s Health c.1250 - present.  We will look at the impact of living conditions on people’s health. This topic also includes the response to epidemics such as the Black Death and AIDS.  We also cover what was done to improve public health.
  •  Following this, we will focus on The Elizabethans, 1580-1603. This involves a study of how Elizabeth governed the country, religion, daily lives, popular culture (including the persecution of witches) and the wider world during this period. The emphasis is on how life in Elizabethan England has been interpreted by historians, TV and film-makers.
  •  Living Under Nazi Rule, 1933-45 is a particularly engaging area of study. The unit covers dictatorship, control and opposition, the lives of people in Nazi Germany plus Germany at War and the occupation of Europe.
  •  In Year 11 we study the changes in one historical site over time. This involves fieldwork as we visit Glastonbury Abbey for our chosen site study. This site allows us to focus on some interesting local history.
  •  To finish, and as a complete contrast, students cover the Making of America, 1789-1900. We look at areas such as American expansion as well as groups who moved west (including the Plains Indians and Mormons) and the American Civil War.


There will be three exam papers making up 100% of the marks.  These exam papers are all taken at the end of the course.