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History A Level at Sydenham School - Sydenham and Forest Hill Sixth Form

Course description

History helps us to understand the world we live in now. We look at key decisions throughout history and understand how change occurred. History is a very popular subject for university, as well as being well respected by employers. History can lead to a variety of occupations such as law, teaching, finance, and management

Course content

Year 12

Unit 1 Historical Themes in Breadth

Students will study two topics in order to gain a broad overview of a particular theme, and will assess the historical significance of events, ideas, attitudes and beliefs and how these influenced behaviours and action.

Possible topics include:

  • England, 1509–1603: authority, nation and religion
  • Britain, 1625–1701: conflict, revolution and settlement
  • Britain/Russia, 1917–91: from Lenin to Yeltsin
  • In search of the American Dream: the USA, c1917– 96
  • Germany and West Germany, 1918–89
  • Britain transformed, 1918–97.

Unit 2 British History Depth Studies

Students will study a period of British history in order to develop an in-depth understanding of attitudes, beliefs and structures of society.

Possible topics include:

  • Luther and the German Reformation, c1515–55
  • France in revolution, 1774–99
  • Russia in revolution, 1894– 1924
  • Mao’s China, 1949–76

Year 13

Unit 1 Breadth Study with Interpretations

Possible topics include:

  • Rebellion and disorder under the Tudors, 1485–1603
  • The witch craze in Britain, Europe and North
  • America, c1580–c1750
  • Industrialisation and social change in Britain, 1759–1928: forging a new Society,
  • Poverty, public health and the state in Britain, c1780–1939
  • Britain: losing and gaining an empire, 1763–1914
  • The British experience of warfare, c1790–1918
  • Germany, 1871–1990: united, divided and reunited
  • The making of modern Russia, 1855–1991
  • The making of modern China, 1860–1997
  • Civil rights and race relations in the USA, 1850–2009
  • Mass media and social change in Britain, 1882–2004.

Unit 2 Historical Enquiry

Students will carry out an enquiry which will assess the ability to carry out a historical enquiry, analyse and evaluating historical interpretations, and organise and communicate the findings.

Entry requirements

Grade B in GCSE History or another Humanities subject is essential

Minimum point score of 38 including Maths and English at grade 4 at GCSE. This is equivalent to 4B and 4C grades overall at GCSE. Students will also need to achieve the subject specific criteria below:

NEW GCSE POINT SCORE GCSE grade 2017 Points:

  • G 1.00
  • F 1.50
  • E 2.00
  • D 3.00
  • C 4.00
  • B 5.50
  • A 7.00
  • A* 8.50


Reformed A levels are two year linear courses. This means that the whole course is assessed at the end of Year 13.

AS qualifications are also available in the reformed subjects and the content of these may be co-teachable with the first year of the A Level course. AS examinations for these courses are Stand Alone qualifications and do not contribute to the final A level grade.

Students starting on a reformed/linear A level in September 2017 will be required to sit a formal exam at the end of Year 12, this may be the AS Stand Alone qualification. The formal exam at the end of Year 12 will give students an important indication of how their learning is progressing and will ensure that students are ready to progress into Year 13.

Students must achieve a D grade or better in all of their A Level courses in the Year 12 examinations to progress to Year 13. Students will usually study 3 A Level subjects or BTEC equivalent although some students may be able to take 4.

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact Sydenham School - Sydenham and Forest Hill Sixth Form directly.

Last updated date: 08 February 2017
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