Ancient History - HSC

Resources for HSC Ancient History and History Extension

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander visitors are kindly advised that this website includes images, sounds and names of people who have passed.

All users should be aware that some topics or historical content may be culturally sensitive, offensive or distressing, and that some images may contain nudity or are of people not yet identified. Certain words, terms or descriptions may reflect the author's/creator's attitude or that of the period in which they were written, but are now considered inappropriate in today's context.

Key to library resources

Access anywhere with a library card In the Library (or anywhere with a Library card for NSW residents)
Available to access in the library Only in the Library
Publicly available online Publicly available

History Extension

What is historiography?

The study of how history is constructed. It involves the critical analysis and evaluation of historical methodologies and the way history has been written over time. From NESA Modern History Glossary 

In the Library

Browse the HSC Resources shelves and Reference shelves for books on a variety of topics. If you are studying an Australian topic you can also browse the Australian Reference collection in the Special Collections area. 

Books available on the HSC Resources shelves include:

Published Materials

Use the library catalogue to find publications on history and guidebooks on academic writing.

More information:

Original Materials

If your topic concerns Ancient Australian history, there may be original materials or unpublished materials for you to access. 

Original materials may include

  • manuscripts such as personal papers, letters, diaries
  • pictures such as paintings, drawings and photographs
  • oral history and sound record recordings such as oral histories, radio interviews and podcasts  You can listen to some of this collection through the library catalogue or through Amplify which delivers audio material from a number of different cultural institutions including the State Library and NSW public libraries.

Search tips for the new library catalogue 

A quick way to search in the catalogue and find manuscripts and pictures (or other materials if you choose):


  • Refine your results on the right by selecting formats of material or a date range. Eg. use the drop-down arrow next to Pictures to select Photographs or Drawings
  • Select Online to view results that are digitised
  • Click on a title to view the full record and any digitised material
  • If not digitised, note the instructions for requesting original materials to view at the Library
  • You will need a Special Collections card to view these in the Special Collections area of the Mitchell Library
  • Talk to a librarian for more help with using Special Collections

Aboriginal archaeological sites and artifacts [PXA 1212]

Bronze figure, probably Spartan (British Museum) ©Putinovac

Top tips from high achieving students

FAQs with experts and prize-winning Extension essays

Get detailed advice from presenters at the State Library/Sydney Living Museums' History Extension Project seminar, and read prize-winning essays by former students from the History Teachers' Association's annual Extension Essay Prize.

Eresources for History Extension

See the eresources pages at left for recommendations of specific databases for different types of information:

Mitchell Library Reading Room
© State Library of NSW