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Welcome to History and Politics! If you are interested in the world around you - the factors that have created the society we live in and how current events will shape the future - then both these subjects will help you answer these questions!

History and Politics focuses on the study of people and society. We examine people from across society – from kings and queens down to serfs and slaves – to understand their lives and actions. We consider how their choices affect the world we live in now. At Bishop Vaughan School, we are proud to have a diverse student body and our curriculum reflects this, with topics covering Welsh, British, European and world histories, as well as looking at the history of marginalised groups.


Studying History and Politics also equips our students with broader skills, such as the ability to analyse and evaluate multiple sources of evidence, build logical and balanced arguments and consider a variety of interpretations and perspectives. These skills are essential in all subjects, and our students have gone on to study a range of subjects, including Law, English Literature, Anthropology, Architecture, Medicine and, of course, History. Many of those who continued to study History at university are now working in careers including the civil service, academic research and conservation. We are also very proud of the number of former students who have chosen to become History teachers!


Our department strongly believes that History and Politics are dynamic subjects that require hands-on learning. Every year, we participate in multiple educational visits to places including Cardiff Castle, Parliament, the Imperial War Museum and the Roman Baths. We also have an annual residential trip to Europe and past destinations have included the First World War battlefields in Belgium and the D-Day landing beaches in France.


Please visit our pages to find out more about our department. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to get in touch with Miss Siddika, Head of Department, at


In Years 7 to 9, students will explore local, national and global history based on the following themes:


  • Conquest, Combat and Colonisation

  • Home, Hearts and Heaven

  • Rebellion, Revolution and Renewal


By studying the same themes each year, students will build a cohesive narrative that makes sense of the factors that have caused changes and the major turning points in history. Students explore the history of Wales through topics such as the building of castles and abbeys, the ascent of the Tudors and the contribution of Wales to the British Empire. World history is also examined through topics such as the Mongol Empire and the African Middle Ages. In every topics, contemporary sources and the latest historical research are used to explore the lives of all sections of society and understand the diversity of experiences in the past. Politics is explored through assemblies, extracurricular activities, including Parliament Week and participation in surgeries with local politicians.


Students can opt to take History at GCSE level. We follow the WJEC specification and study the following topics:


  • Changes in Health and Medicine Through Time, c. 1000 to the modern day

  • Germany in Transition: 1919-39

  • Depression War and Recovery: Britain 1930-50

  • Non-Examined Assessment Unit on either Jack the Ripper or the First World War


Students will sit their first exam paper in Year 10 (Changes in Health and Medicine) with the remainder of the units being examined in Year 11.


In KS5, students have the option of taking History and/or Government and Politics for A Level. Both subjects are very popular and offer complementary courses of study, with many students choosing to take both subjects. History and Government and Politics are both highly valued by universities and are particularly useful for students considering a career in law, education or the civil service.


In A Level History, we study the following units:


  • Politics, Protest and Reform: Britain 1870-1880

  • The Weimar Republic: 1919-33

  • The American Century: USA 1890-1990

  • Nazi Germany: 1933-1945

  • NEA (Coursework) Unit: The Crusades



In A Level Government and Politics, we study the following units:


  • The Government of Wales and the UK

  • Living and Participating in a Democracy

  • Political Concepts and Theories

  • Government and Politics of the USA


History and Politics offer an extensive range of extracurricular activities for our students. These include:


Lecturers and workshops delivered by academics from Swansea University and Aberystwyth University

Visits to historical sites such as Cardiff Castle and Big Pit

Visits to museums including the Imperial War Museum and the Roman Baths at Bath

Visits to Parliament and the Senedd

Opportunities to meet politicians and participate in Q&A sessions, both in person and virtually


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