The study of History and the historical forces and processes that have shaped our world enables us to better understand our society and the world and the individual’s place in it.
It is a subject that teaches people to gather, process, interpret and present information; all of which are important skills in the information based society we now live.
• Distinguish fact from opinion.
• Detect bias and propaganda.
• Recognise differing points of view.
• Develop clear, critical thinking.
• Make sound judgments.
• Present balanced and logical arguments.
The study of History develops in students very marketable skills that are in demand in a wide variety of careers, especially careers related to the law, research, education, advertising, journalism, public service, the police and the armed services.
Skills learnt in History will be valuable no matter what university degree you undertake. Employers value History students for their broad understanding of human nature and human affairs as well as their ability to think through problems and express themselves clearly and accurately.
History fires students’ curiosity and imagination
It invites them to ask, and helps them answer, today’s questions by engaging with the past and imagining and speculating on possible futures. History presents students with the dilemmas, choices, and beliefs of people in the past. It connects students with the wider world as they develop their identities and sense of place. Students engage with history at personal, local, and international levels. They investigate the histories of their communities, New Zealand, and the wider world.
History is a research-led discipline
History encourages an informed understanding of the origins of our diverse society in Aotearoa New Zealand. Central to this understanding is an awareness of the history of the Treaty of Waitangi and the Treaty’s principles, values, and ongoing relevance. An awareness of history inspires students to become confident, questioning, and empathetic individuals.
History is dynamic and exciting
As students develop their understanding of the nature of historical inquiry, they employ a robust methodology. They learn to ask and answer important questions, evaluate evidence, identify and analyse different interpretations of the past, and substantiate their arguments and judgments. Students can see why they are learning and what they are learning, and they can debate the significance of the history they learn.
History prepares students for the future
It equips them with knowledge and skills that are valuable and useful throughout life. These include research techniques, the skills needed to process and synthesise varied and complex materials, the skills necessary to give clear and effective oral and written presentations, and the ability to articulate ideas and make them clear to others. With these skills, students enhance their employability and can participate actively and critically in their societies.
Level 3 History looks at the contestability of events in the past and the various interpretations of those events. Students evaluate the primary and secondary data and the different views of historians. In turn, this develops their skills of independent inquiry and research, which are essential tertiary skills.
Level 2 History helps us to recognise the distinctive forces which have shaped our society and determined our place within it while also making us aware of common links which we share with all humanity. History at Level 2 focuses on understanding how the major forces have shaped our world. Skills of analysis, synthesis, research and communication, which are portable and fundamental to lifelong learning, are further developed at this level.
Level 1 History introduces the discipline of history and history skills. It explores how historians engage in finding out about the past. History is an exploration of how and why change occurs in human societies over time. An appreciation of the past allows a more thorough understanding of the present and provides lifelong interest and pleasure. History teaches analytical skills applicable in a range of situations and occupations and research and communication skills transportable to most jobs.