History at KS4 is a popular and successful subject. The pass rate for the subject in 2011 was 79% A*-C and the most recent results from summer 2012 rose to 85%. The subject has gained more significance since it became part of the English Baccalaureate. History at KS4, however, is not compulsory with students able to opt for this subject should they wish although we would encourage those students wanting to go into further education to consider one of the humanities subjects.
The syllabus that we follow at Marden is the AQA History B. From September 2012 all students taking this option will sit two exams at the end of year 11 with each exam making up 37.5%. The remaining 25% comes from a controlled assessment which demands two extended source based questions to be completed in exam conditions in lesson time.
Paper 1: Conflict in the modern world – Peacemaking 1919-39, Hitler’s Foreign Policy and Appeasement, The Cold War 1945-55
Paper 2: International depth studies – America 1918-41, Nazi Germany 1929-39
Controlled Assessment: Britain in the two World Wars
Students are often in mixed ability sets, however, when possible we will set according to ability.
Like at KS3, students will receive an exercise book which is their own book to carry out day to day tasks set in lessons, homework, revision, etc. In addition to this all students will get an assessment booklet which will be used regularly throughout each term to assess strengths and areas that need development. This booklet is very much focused on developing history skills which will assist them in their final exams and gives guidance throughout in how to be successful in the subject. Teachers will give thorough feedback after each assessment with constructive comments on how to improve on their work. There are also several opportunities for students to self and peer assess work.
Students will be given support outside of lessons through early morning, lunchtime and after school revision classes when important assessments are due and can expect advice, support and assistance at any time through the department’s twitter account @mardenhistory.
Other opportunities to enhance our students understanding of the subject are provided through field trips which the department try to run every two years. In recent years we have tended to visit the WW1 battlefields and war graves in France and Belgium, however, plans are afoot to investigate the possibility of visiting Cold War sites in Berlin.