History is unique in that it is the only subject that investigates how aspects of human life and human institutions have undergone change over time. The Leaving Certificate History course deals with political, social, economic, cultural, religious and scientific history. Pupils will develop understanding about different concepts that are relevant to life today, such as democracy and human rights, power and authority, and conflict and reconciliation. Topics of study are varied and fascinating; from the emotive ‘Troubles’ of Northern Ireland to Ghandi’s quest for Indian independence, from Martin Luther King Jnr.’s struggle for American Civil Rights to the atrocities of the concentration camps of WWII.
Most importantly, pupils submit their research study report (RSR) before the examination, thus having chance to gain up to 20% of the overall mark before sitting the Leaving Certificate examination.
History also develops an ability to think independently without jumping to unsupported conclusions. The highly respected UK ‘Which?’ magazine wrote about history as follows: “historians are regarded as having had an education that trains their minds to assemble, organise and present facts and opinions and this is a very useful quality in many walks of life and careers…history is an excellent preparation for very many other jobs”. Many HFSS pupils also find that their essay writing skills improve hugely which compliments their Leaving Certificate English skills.