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The Waid Academy

Higher History


Purpose:  The course aims to promote awareness of major historical issues and related areas of debate, and thus to develop the ability to think independently and to make informal judgements based specifically on historical evidence.

Recommended Entry:  Pupils are expected to have a C pass or above in National 5 History. However, pupils who have a C pass or above in English and another Social Subject (Geography or Modern Studies), will be eligible for entry to Higher History.

Course Content:  The Higher History course is comprised of 3 Units each of 40 hours, with a further 40 hours available for flexible use (additional research, study or time for reassessment)

Unit 1:  British History:

Britain 1851 to 1951

This involves a study 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 ideology, identity and authority.


Issues investigated include

  • Reasons for and nature of the growth of democracy in Britain, including the rights of women.
  • Social reform of both the Liberal (1906-1914) and Labour Governments (1945-51)?


Unit 2:  European & World: 

The Growth of Nationalism (Germany)

A study of 19th Century Germany - the rise of nationalist forces, which eventually leads to the unification of the nation by 1871. The course then switches to the extreme nationalism that engulfs Germany after 1918.


Issues investigated include

  • Why Nationalism grew 1815-1850?
  • The Unification of Germany
  • The Nature of Fascism in Germany

Unit 3:  Scottish History:

Scotland in the Era of the Great War

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


Topics covered include -               

  • Scots on the Western Front
  • The domestic impact of war i.e. the Home Front
  • The impact of war on industry and the economy
  • The impact of war on politics


Assessed by the following:

Question paper 1 - 2 essays based on:

British, European & World worth 44 marks

- 1 hour and 30 minutes

Question paper 2 – 4 questions based on:

Scottish history - 36 marks, in 1 hour, 30 minutes

The Assignment - an extended essay

worth 30 marks - 1 hour, 30 minutes


Progression:  Higher History, with its emphasis on heritage, change, cause and effect, is a very worthwhile course for those pupils wishing to progress to Tertiary Education. With a qualification in Higher History, possible careers might include -

Law, Journalism , Archaeology, Museums,

Teaching, and Politics

Surveys have shown that 47% of graduate managers in British industry have a qualification in History