GCSE History

Course Content  

The course is a study of developments in international relations from the end of the First World War to the outbreak of World War 2 in 1945. The course also involves a study in depth over a shorter period, of a society “in the round”, which will be Germany 1919-1945.

Subject Skills
  • Writing Skills – the ability to express ideas clearly in written form.
  • Reading and Research Skills – the ability to find out, select and evaluate relevant information.
  • Acquire knowledge and understanding of the human past.
  • Develop understanding of how the past has been represented and interpreted.
  • Use historical sources critically in their historical context.
  • Draw conclusions, make judgements and appreciate that these and other historical conclusions are liable to change in the light of new evidence.

The scheme of assessment consists of one tier covering the whole ability range grades 9 to 1. Students will be taught in mixed ability groups.


There is no coursework for this subject


Candidates must complete three components:

Paper I (divided into 3 sections, 4 questions to be answered) – 2 hours (45% of total mark)
Section A – has one source based question which must be answered.
Section B – has two structured questions of which candidates must answer one.
These two sections will be testing candidates on the International Relations core content.

Section C – tests the chosen Depth Study which will be Germany 1919-1945. Three questions will be set of which candidates must answer two. One of these questions will be source based and will be compulsory; the other two will be structured questions of which candidates must answer one.

Paper II – 1 ½ hour (30% of total mark)
Consists of a source-based investigation of an historical issue taken from the British Depth Study (1906-1918).  The three main topics to be covered are: The Reforms of the Liberal Government 1906-1918, How and Why Women Got the Vote in 1918, The Home Front during World War I.

The questions on the exam paper will be set on one of these topics. All six questions must be answered in the paper, using the sources and their contextual knowledge of the topic.

Historical Enquiry – ‘Controlled Assessment’ (25% of total marks)
Candidates must complete one Controlled Assessment task which is set by the exam board.   The Controlled Assessment task will be set on one of four options such as ‘The Role of the Individual in History’.  The unit is internally assessed.

New GCSE course content

For students making their GCSE choices in Year 8, we are excited to be in the position to be able to inform you of the topics that will be part of the new History GCSE. At this stage we only have the draft options available and the information below is still subject to change. We are disappointed that we can only offer the limited information below about the methods of assessment on this course. The course we will offer will be Ofqual approved in June and we aim to release further information at that point.We will be following OCR History A (Explaining the Modern World).