The principal objective of the History, Government and Politics Department is to enthuse all students, so they engage with past, present and future of the society in which they live.

History is offered at all levels throughout the school and Government and Politics may be studied at A-level.


The IGCSE History course concentrates on 20th Century World History, enhancing and developing the main studies of Year 9.

At A-level, historians study a wide range of English and World History from the 16th and 17th centuries up to the present day. They also have the opportunity to pursue individual enthusiasms in depth in their coursework investigation.

Government and Politics.

Government and Politics students follow the Edexcel course, which explores British and US politics and society. This dynamic course gives pupils the opportunity to explore and analyse the latest events in current affairs. They also get to examine the complex legal and political systems which govern how democracies in the UK and US work. Every other year there is a trip to Washington to find out, first hand, the state of US democracy.

Facilities and Academic Extention.

The Department has modern classrooms in the Humanities Building where students benefit from well resourced IT and research facilities. There are thriving History and Politics societies and students enjoy a varied programme of lectures, conferences and visits to Parliament.

For more information about History, Government and Politics at Epsom, click the headings below.

Year 7.

  • A general overview of aspects of Medieval history including the Battle of Hastings, the Norman consolidation of power and the impact on society of conquest.
  • A project competition in the Summer term will encourage students to be as creative as possible in their mission to design and make a Norman castle.
  • A study visit to Hastings in October gives an opportunity to widen the life of the mind in this, the 950 anniversary of the Battle of Hastings.

Year 8.

Students follow an enquiry lead course, exploring the stories of the Middle Ages through to Early Modern Britain. The examination of monarchs, their dynasties and their wars provides the perfect opportunity to allow pupils to develop their written skills, to enhance the quality of the conclusion they draw and introduces them to the skills of source interpretation.

Year 9.

  • A general overview of aspects of 20th Century History including World Wars.
  • The Crawfurd History Prize, in the Lent term, gives an opportunity for personal research into an aspect of the First World War.
  • A study visit to the First World War Battlefields in the Summer half-term gives an opportunity for reflection and full immersion in the pivotal conflict of the 20th Century.
  • We start to introduce the GCSE syllabus, with an exploration of the US Civil Rights Movement from 1950-1964.

In this two year course (Edexcel IGCSE), pupils explore the USA between the Wars. Continuing, what was introduced in Year 9, they address America after World War Two and assess whether it truly was a ‘divided union’ – examining the Civil Rights movement from 1964-1972.

The Year 10 course is complemented by an annual visit to Berlin to focus on the rise of the Nazi Party from 1920 to 1940, and its consequences.

In Year 11, students study the ‘Development of Dictatorship in Germany 1918-45′. This provides a stark contrast to the final module which explores the history of China in the twentieth century.

This course is made up of two examinations of 90 minutes each. There is no coursework.


Students follow the OCR specification. All students study the early Tudors 1485-1588, Russia and its Rulers 1855-1964, an element of US History and The Cold War in Europe 1945-91. Students also complete a personal investigation (coursework) on a topic of their choice.

This involves selecting and critically evaluating a range of primary and secondary sources to come to an informed judgement.

All four modules are studied across both years giving a truly progressive unit of study.

Government & Politics.

We offer a well-known and highly regarded course from Edexcel to study the A-level in Government and Politics.

For the first year, we concentrate on the nature of politics, the effectiveness of elections, the role of political parties, the constitution, Parliament, the Prime Minister and the judiciary, finishing off with a unit of work on Political Ideologies.

In the second year, students study the ideas and structures which go into the system of government in the United States. They prepare for a synoptic paper which compares and contrasts the UK and US political systems.

There is no coursework element in this A-level. Candidates are encouraged to discover information and ideas for themselves, to analyse that information, make judgments on it, formulate conclusions and communicate their findings fully and clearly.


There is a weekly History society which meets to study and debate ideas of interest to sharpen critical thinking skills.

It also offers the opportunity for students to further indulge their passion of the subject by offering presentations for discussion.

There are regular lectures from outside speakers, including eminent historians (recent visitors to the College include Norman Stone and Geoffrey Hosking), with frequent trips to sites which are of relevance to the course.

We take the Lower Sixth to Hampton Court in the Lent term and are planning a visit to St Petersburg and Moscow in 2019.

Government & Politics.

Similarly, there is a bi-weekly society, which meets to discuss and debate, there are regular lectures from outside speakers, including eminent politicians (recent visitors to the College include Tom Brake MP and Chris Grayling MP) and we regularly run trips to the Houses of Parliament.

To match the electoral cycle in the US we take interested Sixth Formers to Washington, on a biennial basis. With trips in October 2018 and 2020 already planned.