The aims of the History Department are to…

  • Promote a love of history in order that students may feel intrinsically gratified from learning about the past and to develop a passion for the subject that they take into their adult life beyond education. Visiting speakers to the department in the past two years include Professor Christopher Read, Professor Jo Fox, Dr Tom Davies and Dr Simon Topping.
  • Provide opportunity for students to learn about the diverse history of the Island in which they live and that of the wider world. This is done through visits to sites as diverse as La Hougue Bie, the First World War Battlefields, the War Tunnels, a 19th Century London Operating Theatre, Hampton Court, and Washington D.C and Alabama.
  • Encourage empathy with people in the past and to see how history helps us to understand the lives of people today. Enquiries are carefully selected to help students see the connection between history and the present day.
  • To promote the value of History as a unique academic discipline whilst also encouraging cross-curricular learning. Students pursue an enquiry based approach to learning that is focussed on studying the past through the lens of second-order concepts such as causation, change and continuity and historical significance.
Year 7

Students are introduced to a wide range of historical content in Key Stage 3.  In Year 7 we start with the Battle of Hastings and the Norman Conquest and progress through a range of significant events including the Black Death, Magna Carta, Henry VIII and the reign of Elizabeth I.  We include lots of work on contemporary sources and interpretations of the past to encourage students to think about how history is constructed.

Year 8

Students start the year by carrying out an investigation into the concept of ‘revolution’ with a study of the features of the Glorious Revolution, French Revolution and Industrial Revolution.  The continue their study of History through topics including Empire and Slavery, The World Wars, Women’s Suffrage and the Holocaust.

Year 9

In Year 9 students begin to study the AQA GCSE unit ‘Health and the People.’  This is a thematic study which allows students to explore the history of medicine from c.1000AD to the present day.  This gives a valuable opportunity to re-cap key topics explored in Year 7 and 8 but looking at them through a different lens.  Students explore themes such as ‘War, Government, Science and Technology, Religion, the Role of the Individual and Chance.’  Assessments will reflect GCSE standards and students will be able to make an informed choice as to whether they wish to continue the subject to GCSE.


At GCSE students follow the AQA syllabus which includes the study of The American West, Conflict and Tension 1918-1939, Elizabethan England and Health and the People.  All examinations are completed at the end of Year 11 and the department offers a revision trip to London in Year 11 to explore the history of Medicine and Public Health with some ‘hands on’ activities.

A Level

The aim of the Sixth Form course is to develop an understanding of the complex interaction between great individuals, socio-economic change and political rivalry in an international context of war and revolution.  Those following recent events including race riots in the USA and conflict in the Middle-East will appreciate the significance of such understanding for the world today. In Sixth Form we will likely follow the new AQA syllabus.  With the shift to terminal assessment at the end of Year 13 the skills developed lower down the school will be crucial to a student being successful at A-Level

Year 12

Students explore Russian history between 1917-1929 examining the decline of Tsarism and the rise of Communism.  Alongside this students complete an exploration of the reign of the early Tudor monarchs focussing on socio-economic, religious and political developments. They will also begin their research for the independent study of the Long Civil Rights Movement in the USA between 1863-1965.  There will be an opportunity to visit Hampton Court Palace and hear a series of lectures from eminent university professors.

Year 13

Students continue their study of Russia and the Tudors.  They will learn about Stalin’s rule and also the mid-Tudor crisis and the eventual Gloriana of the reign of Elizabeth I.  Students will also complete their independent study relating to the Long Civil Rights Movement in the USA between 1863 and 1965.

As a department we believe girls thrive when they are inspired to learn about history for themselves.  We recommend suitable historical fiction, guide them to educational websites, subscribe to journals and magazines and encourage them to watch appropriate documentaries and television programmes (including Horrible Histories…).  If students are interested in the History they are studying then academic success in the subject will come all the more easily.

For further information concerning studying GCSE or A-level History at JCG please see the attached documents. If you have any further questions please do not hesitate to contact Mr Herbert or any member of the History Department.