Webinar series: Meaningful and useable assessment in the secondary history classroom

HA webinar series for secondary history teachers and leaders

In recent years, many history teachers have done lots of exciting work to develop the curriculum they teach, incorporating new content, new scholarship and new enquiries. As part of this work, it is vital to uncover how far pupils are learning all that was intended, and the ways in which this is changing their understanding of the past.

In this series of six webinars, Jonathan Grande will explore and exemplify a wide range of types and forms of assessment that can be used to provide precise, accurate and meaningful insights into pupils’ historical knowledge and understanding. The sessions will consider the purposes of assessment in history, approaches to designing meaningful questions and tasks and what history teachers might do with the insights they gain. The series will mainly be focused on Key Stage 3, with relevance for Key Stages 4 and 5.

Learning outcomes

This webinar series will enable you to:

  • Gain knowledge of key principles and purposes of effective and meaningful assessment in secondary history
  • Gain knowledge of a wide range of different types of assessment, and how these can be used individually and collectively to reveal pupils’ knowledge and understanding in history
  • Plan and design a wide range of assessment tasks that can reveal pupils’ substantive and disciplinary knowledge
  • Understand the range of insights that can be made from assessments, and how these insights can be used to inform future planning and teaching

About the presenter

Jonathan Grande is an experienced Head of Department and the Network Lead for History across Ark Schools.

How to book

If you wish to book an individual webinar before it has taken place, you can book online using the links below.

For all webinars we recommend watching live in order to interact with the presenter, but if you are unable to participate live then a recording link will be made available to all registered delegates within 2 working days. If you have missed a session, a recording can be accessed later by making a block booking using the form below.

We offer discounted rates for bulk bookings of 3 or more paid sessions so if you wish to book several webinars in the series then we recommend using the bulk booking form below to access a discounted rate. 

Session 1: Invisible assessment within an enquiry (FREE for HA members)
Wednesday 24 April 2024, 4.30–5.30pm

This session will explore the constant, routine assessment that goes on throughout the history lessons that make up a single enquiry – assessment that forms such a natural part of history teaching that it’s sometimes difficult to notice it as assessment. What is the purpose of this assessment? How can we use it to gain as much insight as possible into pupils’ learning? And what might we do with the insights we gain? 

Session 2: Assessing the historical parts
Wednesday 8 May 2024, 4.30–5.30pm

This session will explore how history teachers can isolate and assess individual components, or parts, of pupils’ historical knowledge, but without reducing this to an assessment of isolated facts. The session will include examples of questions and tasks that can help teachers assess pupils’ understanding of a particular concept, their chronological knowledge and their knowledge of how historians they’ve studied have established evidence for their claims about the past.  

Session 3: Assessing pupils’ answers to enquiry questions 
Wednesday 22 May 2024, 4.30–5.30pm

This session will consider how history teachers can go about ‘marking’ pupils’ answers to enquiry questions in a way that values the pupils’ own voice and independent thinking, and avoids restricting them to a mark scheme. The session will also explore how we might use the process of answering an enquiry question as a teaching opportunity, without losing it as an opportunity for assessment.

Session 4: Assessing the historical whole 
Wednesday 12 June 2024, 4.30–5.30pm

This session will set out a range of tasks and questions, beyond answering an enquiry question, that require pupils to draw on the knowledge they have built cumulatively throughout the curriculum. The session will consider the purposes of such assessment tasks and some underlying principles that will enable teachers to design their own. 

Session 5: A year in assessment
Wednesday 26 June 2024, 4.30–5.30pm

This session will put forward a couple of examples of what meaningful and useable assessment could look like across a school year at Key Stage 3. The session will explore the range of assessment types in each example, the individual and collective purposes of the assessments, and the kinds of actions teachers might make at different points through the year. And all without there being a GCSE-style question in sight! 

Session 6: A history teacher’s 'markbook'
Wednesday 10 July 2024, 4.30–5.30pm

This session will consider what it might be most useful for history teachers to keep a record of over the course of a year. Every time we read pupils’ work or listen to what they have to say about history, we learn more about their knowledge of, and relationship with, the past. But what might it be most useful for us to capture, and how might we do this most efficiently? 

Book multiple webinars

If you wish to make a discounted block booking of multiple webinars, please complete the form below to make a booking and request an invoice. 

To access the member price please provide your membership number when prompted.

Number of webinars booked

HA Member ticket

Non-member ticket

1 webinar



6 webinars



Book a recording

If you have missed a session, a recording can be accessed using the form above. You will be emailed an invoice for the cost of the recording(s) and a time-limited link to access the webinar recording on Zoom. 

All webinars in this series are also eligible for the corporate member free recording offer. This can be booked using the link below.

Assessing the historical parts

Assessing pupils’ answers to enquiry questions 

Assessing the historical whole 

A year in assessment 

A history teacher’s ‘markbook’

Please see the terms and conditions for further information.

Terms and conditions

All prices are listed inclusive of VAT. 

All Historical Association webinars are subject to the HA CPD terms and conditions. For enquiries please contact events@history.org.uk.