Accessibility links

History A-Level at Queen Elizabeth Sixth Form College

Course description

Why choose History? Studying the past can be fascinating in itself and can provide greater understanding of the world today.

History is ideal for students who:

  • Have an interest in the way the world has developed through the ages
  • Enjoy investigation and discovery
  • Enjoy debate and like putting forward a well-argued case
  • Wish to improve their analytical skills
  • Want to study a subject which encourages them to consider evidence and make up their own minds
  • Want to keep their options open

History is widely regarded as a useful qualification for a broad range of higher education or career choices.

Course content

Two courses are on offer – Modern or Tudor History. Each course will develop the same skills and lead to the same qualification but they will look at different time periods and content. Both Modern and Tudor History will cover a chronological range of at least two hundred years and will include a study of British history and one or more other countries. There will also be an opportunity to carry out an independently researched historical enquiry (coursework) in the second year of the course.

Tudor History

In the first year, the course will cover Tudor England from 1509 to 1603 including the reigns of Henry VIII, Edward VI, Mary I and Elizabeth I, as well as Martin Luther and the German Reformation, c1515-55. In the second year, we will focus on the witch craze in Britain, Europe and North America, c1580-1750 and there is also a coursework requirement which will concentrate on historical interpretations and controversies in Tudor England.

Modern History

In the first year, we will study Germany and West Germany from 1918 to 1989 including the rise of the Nazis, life in Hitler’s Germany and post-war Germany, as well as the rise and fall of fascism in Italy, c1911 to 1946. In the second year, the course will focus on the British Empire from 1763 to 1914 and there is also a coursework requirement which will concentrate on historical interpretations and controversies in Germany, 1918-1989.

How it is taught

History is taught in a variety of ways at QE. Activities include:

  • Class debates
  • Studying sources
  • DVDs
  • Use of ICT
  • Essay writing & note taking
  • Reading and research

A range of other activities are organised each year. In the past, these have included:

  • Lectures at local universities
  • Visits to historical sites in Britain and Europe (Rome, London, Leeds Armouries and Fountains Abbey have been visited recently)
  • A monthly History club which looks at other periods of History, not studied in class
  • A History Christmas Quiz

Entry requirements

The usual entry requirement to QE is 5 GCSE grades at C or above including Maths or English. A good number of students study four AS Levels in their first year and to do this we require at least 3B grades and 3C grades at GCSE including Maths and English Language. Students who do not achieve these GCSE grades take fewer subjects at A Level and will be required to do resits in GCSE Maths and English if they have not already achieved a grade C in these core subjects. The College is large enough to have a very flexible timetable that allows students to take almost any combination of subjects at A Level. The advantage of this system is that we can tailor your programme to suit your needs and abilities. We give lots of advice if you decide to apply to the College.

Subject Specific

GCSE Grade C or above in English Language and History (if you have already taken the subject at GCSE) is preferred for students taking Advanced Level History.

It is not a requirement that you have studied History at GCSE in order to take an Advanced Level course in the subject.


Assessment in the first year is by source and essay questions and two exams are taken at the end of the first year. In the second year, essay and source skills are developed further and there are three examinations taken at the end of the course. A coursework assignment is also completed in the second year which makes up 20% of the A level.

Future opportunities

History students go on to a wide range of careers, from areas of obvious relevance like heritage work, teaching or research, to fields like journalism, law, accountancy and management, the civil service, even midwifery! For more information about History courses at Queen Elizabeth Sixth Form College:

  • See the College Prospectus
  • Come to Open Evenings
  • Contact Gary Darby (Head of Subject) at the College

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact Queen Elizabeth Sixth Form College directly.

Last updated date: 17 April 2015
Provider logo

Key information