Students study aspects of the past in breadth through periods or themes. The unit addresses breadth of study, requiring students to address two linked themes from a range of perspectives, for example social, religious, political and cultural.
Paper 1, In search of the American Dream: the USA, 1917–96
Paper 2, South Africa, 1948–94: from apartheid state to ‘rainbow nation’.
The options are linked by the common theme of a search for rights, freedoms and greater equality during the twentieth century. In the USA, the quest for political, social and economic advancement looked mainly to reform existing structures. In South Africa, this quest led to more radical outcomes, bringing an end to the apartheid regime. Studying two different countries allows students to develop a greater understanding of both similarities and differences in the search for greater rights, freedoms and equality in the twentieth century world.
Paper 3, The British experience of warfare, c1790–1918
Together, the breadth and depth topics explore the British experience of war in different aspects of major overseas conflicts and the changing relationship between the state and the people as the government attempted to create an effective fighting machine and prepare the people for war. Within the primarily military focus on the experience of warfare, this option also gives students the opportunity to explore its political, social and economic dimensions and their part in generating pressure for change.
Coursework: The Russian Revolution
The purpose of this coursework is to enable students to develop skills in the analysis and evaluation of interpretations of history in a chosen question, problem or issue as part of an independently researched assignment. The focus is on understanding the nature and purpose of the work of the historian. Students will be required to form a critical view based on relevant reading on the question, problem or issue. They will also be specifically required to analyse, explain and evaluate the interpretations of three historians on the topic of the Russian Revolution.
Unit. Percentage of final grade.
Unit 1. 30%
Unit 2. 20%
Unit 3. 30%
Unit 4. 20%
Anything else I need to know?
Extension and Enrichment Opportunities:
- Field trip to Washington DC
- University Master Classes
History GCSE at Grade 5 or above if studied at GCSE. Students can still do A Level History if they have obtained a grade 5 or above in five subjects at GCSE, including a 5 in English Language.
A-Level History provides the opportunity to develop an enquiring mind and excellent literacy skills. The Historical skills of analysis, interpretation of sources, understanding a coherent point of view and problem solving play a key part throughout the course.
You can progress to higher education courses such as honours degrees in History, or to degrees in related subjects such as Politics, English Literature, Economics or Geography; or to vocational qualifications such as the BTEC Higher National Certificate/Diploma in Media (Journalism) or in Travel and Tourism.
An Advanced GCE in History will give you a number of skills relevant to many types of employment, such as the ability to seek information and to analyse it in order to identify facts and motives and to present information clearly for others to understand.
The skills you will obtain through studying History will be useful in a number of careers, either directly related to history (e.g. working in museums, galleries, heritage sites, record offices and archives and teaching), or in areas such as journalism, libraries, national and local government and the civil service.