Bridgnorth Sixth Form


Advanced Level
Exam Board: OCR
GCSE History grade 5, English grade 5

Why study History?

If you enjoy the study of the past both for its own sake and also the light it throws on the present, then a History A Level is for you. The skills most developed by History are those of critical analysis and the ability to express ideas, knowledge and interpretations clearly. History also provides students with a good grounding in transferable research skills.

What skills are required?

Students who study History are enthusiastic independent learners who enjoy the challenge of investigating key themes, individuals, and events, from the past. Students will be required to read widely to build a thorough understanding of different interpretations of History. The ability to research independently is an essential skill required for the course work component.

Students will also gain experience of evaluating contemporary sources and analysing historical interpretations. A willingness to participate in class discussion and debate is beneficial. Clear communication of understanding through essays and extended writing tasks will also be required.

Course Content

British period study and enquiry:
(Unit Group 1) The Later Tudors, together with a focus on the mid-Tudor crises.

Non-British period study:
(Unit Group 2) The Cold War in Europe 1945-1991

Thematic study and historical interpretations:
(Unit Group 3) Civil Rights in the USA 1865-1992

Internally assessed independent study chosen by the student and externally moderated by OCR.

How will it be assessed?

Paper 1: The Later Tudors and the mid-Tudor crises

  • 1 hour 30 minutes
  • 25% of the A Level

Paper 2: The Cold War in Europe 1945-1991

  • 1 hour paper
  • 15% of the A level

Paper 3: Civil Rights in the USA 1865-1992

  • 2 hours 30 minutes
  • 40% of the total A Level

Independent Study

  • 20% of the total A level


Many employers regard A Level History as an excellent training in communication and in decision-making.

As a well-respected academic discipline, History is considered an excellent A level subject for entry to almost all degree courses. The History course will furthermore provide those applying for predominantly scientific courses with academic breadth. History is one of the facilitating A Levels.

The study of history is a study of us as an international and global society. We study history to try to see things as other people saw them and interpret things in our own way.

In the fields of Management, Law, Administration, Accountancy, Journalism and Marketing, this is a highly valued asset. It is certainly an ideal grounding for Law, involving, as both do, the deployment of argument based evidence.

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