Why study this course?
The A Level History course has been designed to help students understand the significance of historical events, the roles of individuals in history and the nature of change over time. Students will be examining over 200 years of both British and European history through a breadth and depth study. There has never been a better time to study history – the past is alive, dynamic, controversial and hugely relevant. History is constantly being written and rewritten, contested and reinterpreted. History is more than simply looking backwards and studying the past – it is also about critically engaging with the present and future. In today’s climate, it is more important than ever to learn from the mistakes of the past.
What will I study?
The content at AS covers the first part of the full A Level course.
Component 1: Breadth Study – The Tudors: England, 1485-1547
The Tudors course allows students to study in breadth issues of change, continuity, cause and consequence in this period considering how the Tudors restored and developed the powers of the monarchy, how England was governed during this period, relations with foreign powers, society and the economy, intellectual and religious changes and how important key groups and individuals were to the Tudor period.
Part one: consolidation of the Tudor Dynasty: England, 1485-1547
Students will look at the reigns of Henry VII and Henry VIII. Themes will be their consolidation of power, their character and aims, the system of government, relationships with Scotland and other foreign powers, society, the economy and religion.
Component 2: Depth Study – Democracy and Nazism: Germany, 1918-1933
The depth study looks at a period of German history during which a newly developed democratic form of government gave way to a dictatorial regime. It explores political concepts such as ‘left’ and ‘right’, nationalism, liberalism as well as ideological concepts such as racialism, anti-Semitism and Social Darwinism. It also encourages reflection on how governments work and the problems of democratic states as well as consideration of what creates and sustains a dictatorship.
Part one: the Weimar Republic, 1918-1933
Students will look at how the Weimar Republic was established and the problems of the early years up to 1924. They will also cover the Golden Age looking at economic, political and social developments and finally the collapse of democracy between 1928 and 1933 which saw the rise of the Nazis.
The full A Level builds on the work covered in Y12 going up to 1603 with the Tudors and 1945 with Germany.
Component 1: Breadth Study – The Tudors: England, 1485-1603
Part two: England: turmoil and triumph, 1547-1603
This course focuses on Henry VIII’s children – Edward VI, Mary Tudor and Elizabeth I.
Students will consider the problems of succession, relations with foreign powers, religious and social changes during their reigns.
Component 2: Depth Study – Democracy and Nazism: Germany, 1918-1945
Part two: Nazi Germany, 1933-1945
This course focuses on Hitler’s consolidation of power, the Terror State and economic and social policies.
Students will also look at the Racial State, anti-Semitism and the treatment of Jews. They will finish off looking at the impact of the Second World War.
Component 3: Historical Investigation – Personal study of approx. 100 years
Students also have to complete a personal study based on a topic of student’s choice. This has to take the form of a question in the context of approximately 100 years. This will culminate in a 3000-3500 word essay.
How will I be assessed?
There are two written exams at the end of the second year both 2 hours 30 minutes long for the Tudors and Nazism topics. Three questions (one compulsory) worth 80 marks which make up 40% of the A Level. The personal study is a 3000-3500 word essay worth 40 marks which makes up 20% of A Level. This is marked by teachers and moderated by AQA.
Where can it lead?
Students who have studied A Level History go on to study a variety of subjects at higher level including History, Law, Business, Media and Politics. A History qualification is highly prized by education establishments and employers alike as it teaches data analysis, report writing, critical thinking and research skills.