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Girls’ School

History and Government & Politics

Why study History?

History is an essential subject for anyone who has a keen interest in the past and the way the world has changed and developed through time.  If you enjoy investigative work and debate and want to study a subject which allows you to make up your mind about issues then History would be a good subject to choose.

Curriculum Outline


  • To further the students’ understanding of specific historical concepts and their changing meanings in an historical context. Also to develop a sense of perspective, to understand the more general concepts of change and continuity, and to develop an awareness of 21st century society and issues in relation to the past;
  • To develop learning skills of interpreting and analysing data, reading and selecting information from books, discussing, constructing arguments and essay writing;
  • To develop the skills of historical investigation, that is, evaluation of evidence, detecting bias and motives, as well as develop an awareness of the different ways in which the past can be interpreted.
  • To increase the students’ general knowledge and to foster a life-long interest in History.

History is studied by all pupils in Years 7-9 and is an option at GCSE and A-level.


The following methods are used to facilitate comprehension and assimilation of factual information and concepts:

  • Examination of a varied selection of historical evidence
  • Guided reading
  • Classroom explanation and discussion
  • The use of audio-visual material
  • Trips and outings to relevant sites and museums
  • Structured, written work for later revision
  • Frequent testing and examination practice
  • History software packages
  • The use of artefacts from Reading Museum

The students are encouraged to use this information to formulate reasoned interpretations and to communicate clear and coherent judgements. This may take the form of essay writing, class debate, the analysis of evidence, group activities, role playing and individual studies.