As a department we aim to encourage a lifelong passion for the past in all our students and demonstrate the relevance of History today.  We seek to develop pupils’ understanding of the various factors that have shaped the world in which they live and teach them to question and learn through active and interesting lessons.  We try to ensure that our students are equipped with skills that will help them in all aspects of their future studies.

 National Courses
The National 3/ 4 and 5 History course focuses on Scottish, British and World History through three units of work.

Pupils will study:

  1. ‘Migration and Empire 1830 - 1939’

This unit studies the causes and results of Irish and European immigration to Scotland, the reasons for Scots emigration and the enormous effect Scots had on the places they moved to abroad.

                 or ‘The Great War 1914 – 1918’

A study of the experiences of Scots in the Great War and its impact on life in Scotland. This topic considers the impact of technology on the soldiers on the Western Front. It also considers the way in which the war changed life for people at home as the war began to impact on every aspect of life both during and after the war.


  1. ‘The Atlantic Slave Trade 1770 - 1807’

This unit looks at the organisation of the slave trade and its effects on Britain, the experience of the slaves and slave resistance, as well as the successful campaign to abolish the slave trade.


  1. ‘Free at Last? Civil Rights in the USA 1918 – 1968’

A study of the development of race relations in the USA during the years 1918–68, illustrating themes of ideas, identity and power.

Along with the broad range of assessments they have experienced so far in History, students are introduced to more advanced levels of essay writing and source handling skills that will prepare them for the senior phase.

National 4 History is internally assessed and includes an Added Value unit which will take the form of a research project or piece of extended writing.

National 5 History is a combination of internally assessed units, an assignment and a final exam.


Here, students build on the experience gained from National level and further develop the skills of essay writing and source analysis.

Higher History involves the study of three units:

  1. Historical Study European and World: Germany 1815 – 1939

A study of the growth of nationalism in nineteenth century Germany leading to the overcoming of obstacles to unification of the nation by 1871, and the development of extreme nationalism after 1918, illustrating the themes of nationalism, authority and conflict.


  1. Historical Study British: Britain 1851 – 1951

A study of the development of the United Kingdom into a modern democracy and the development of the role of the state in the welfare of its citizens, illustrating the themes of authority, ideology and rights.


  1. Historical Study Scottish: The Impact of the Great War 1914 - 1928.

A study of conflict and its political, social, economic and cultural effects, illustrating the themes of conflict, change and identity.

Assessment at this level comprises of end of unit assessments, an assignment and a final exam.

Advanced Higher

Students also have the opportunity to progress to Advanced Higher History in S6 where they specialise in one particular field of study (Russia 1914 – 1941), complete a dissertation and sit a final exam.

Nationals in a Nutshell

Career pathways

Assessment Calendars

National 4/5

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