History

What does the course involve?
Our new and exciting course follows the theme of society and outsiders. In accordance with new requirements students will study history across a range of around 200 years with at least 20% being made up of specifically British History and 20% of the course focusing on the history of a country outside of Great Britain. The year 12 course will be modern in focus with Unit 1 offering a breath study of Britain from 1918-1997, including a study in the controversy surrounding the governments of Margaret Thatcher as well as looking at welfare, the economy and immigration. Unit 2 will focus in depth on the USA from 1955-1997 and will include social, economic and political themes including protest, race relations and the creation of the Democrat/Republican divide. The Year 13 examined course will focus on the early modern period and examine Witch hunting in the 16th and 17th centuries. This will provide an opportunity to examine how ideas changed over time and the impact they had on society. There will be a choice of five areas of focus for the coursework from a variety of different periods. These will include: Tudor rebellions, the abolition of slavery, appeasement, the impact of World War Two and Black Power. Courses will contain a mix of political, economic, social and an increasing quantity of cultural history to give a rounded view of the periods under consideration and to tap into the style of history that is currently being studied in universities.

How will you learn?
Throughout the course we use a variety of teaching methods including the study of documents and sources, group investigations and individual study. Learning also takes place through discussion, presentations, note taking, debate and research – in short, all sorts of methods that help you actively engage with History.

What exams and coursework are involved?
All exams are taken at the end of year 13. Three exams will be taken in which questions are answered in three different styles; traditional essay style questions testing knowledge of the topics, source evaluation style questions and questions addressing historical interpretation of events. There is one piece of coursework, completed in Year 13.
A standalone AS qualification can be taken at the end of Year 13 but does not contribute towards the A-level. AS questions will have a similar mix of styles but will be less complex and possibly also contain extra help within the question.

What are the entry requirements?
Our main entry requirement is a keen interest in and enthusiasm for the subject, and we accept students with a range of GCSE grades, although most of our students have at least a B in GCSE History. Please talk to us if you have not done GCSE History and we will discuss the requirements of the course and we can make a joint decision. As a subject that requires significant amounts of in depth extra reading and high order literacy skills, a 6 in English Language is needed.

What could you do after completing the course?
History is a very popular A level at South Wilts and many use it as a stepping stone to further studies at University. The department values its excellent staff and the hard work which takes place. All of the ‘premier league’ universities regard History as a rigorous, academic subject to study at A Level, and so a good History grade is very well received. Because of the high level of reading and writing skills demanded and cultivated, the course could lead to a whole host of career path choices, such as: the Civil Service, management and accountancy, the Law, teaching and research, to name but a few.


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