Join TSR now and get all your revision questions answeredSign up now

How did you get an A in AS history? Watch

    Offline

    2
    ReputationRep:
    Get yourself a textbook, learn everything. You'll get the A that way.
    Offline

    0
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by chelseafan)
    Hey guys I've got my unit 1 and 2 exams in June. Anyway I was wondering if people could share tips on how to get an A. Like what is a good essay structure for 12 and 24 markers and also what are good ways to revise the content.

    Thanks.
    Got a distinction in AS History.

    • Know your topics inside out.
    • Look up the historiography (Background in its historical context)
    • MAKE NOTES
    • Revise the notes till your finishing up the syllabus daily around a week before the exam
    • Practice past papers as much as you can
    • Have some good quotes or a statistic or two in handy
    • ALWAYS know what historians have said about the subject, remember a name or two aswell
    • Practice how to write faster, especially as in history you have 24 mark questions
    • always make a plan. ALWAYS
    • concentrate on your structure. Make every paragraph flow onto the next. Whenever you start a new paragraph, make sure the first sentence somehow was linked to the previous paragraph, this will help it 'flow'
    • Always have a very strong conclusion, as this is the thing that will still be 'fresh' in the examiners mind
    • Dont introduce new concepts in the conclusion
    • Make the introduction literally jump out of the page and GRAB you.
    • Don't try and be humorous, funny examiners dont like that **** :rolleyes: Be formal
    • You can use the 'burger' approach to writing out the essay. I.e make layers: Introduction, transition (or opening it up) , body, body, body, transition (or wrapping it up) conclusion.


    Hope I helped :colonhash:
    Offline

    0
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by Kousar)
    That's not easy. Memorising takes up a lot of your time...
    It was painful revision!
    Exactly, that's the point I'm making.
    Offline

    2
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by Kousar)
    I do Edexcel.

    That's strange, mine is fine on CW but bad on the exam content. You doing Kaiser to Fuhrer?
    I'm doing Kaiser to Fuhrer
    Offline

    3
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by Sannn)
    I don't mind Edexcel A2 history apart from the ****ing coursework...my teacher could not explain it for his life
    This coursework has taken over my life I absolutely hate it!
    Offline

    1
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by vaguity)
    I'm doing Kaiser to Fuhrer
    How you finding it? It's interesting but boring at the same time (I know, can't get any more oxymoronic than that!)
    Offline

    2
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by IndiaCaitlinn)
    This coursework has taken over my life I absolutely hate it!
    Are you doing public protest against authority? I just finished both essays today
    Offline

    2
    ReputationRep:
    I got 100% in both units at AS (Edexcel), so I'll try to help if I can!

    If it's anything like Edexcel (which I suspect it is), the key is to use evidence to support your argument, and not the other way around. This is good practice anyway, but people often fall into the trap of giving the examiner a very nice account of what happened, and then just add a short bit of analysis/explanation on at the end. To achieve this:

    1) Plan. It doesn't have to be long, it doesn't have to be detailed. Give yourself five minutes to go over the question in your head, and jot down your main areas of discussion (I usually try to find three) on a piece of paper. Try and think of a theme that will allow you to link your paragraphs together; it makes for a much more flowing and coherent answer.

    2) Work on your introductions. For whatever reason, many people neglect the introduction as something that just needs be gone over swiftly so that they can move on to the main body of writing, which isn't a good idea. An interesting introduction will help get the examiner on side, which always helps. Of course, it mustn't cover reems of paper, but you need to outline things like the context, the key terms and expressions, and (if you can) a brief summary of where your argument will lead.

    3) PEA. Boring, I know, but "Point, Evidence, Analysis" is a very good way of structuring an A-level essay, particularly if you're struggling for style or fluency. For each area of discussion: explain the specific argument, give some relevant evidence, and analyse the strength of the point in question.

    4) Work on your conclusions. A weak conclusion can ruin an otherwise decent essay, so it's important that you get it right. Go over everything you've talked about in the main body of your essay, and, if possible, try not to sit on the fence when it comes to your final judgement.

    Anyway, I hope those pointers can be of some help. Obviously, a good amount of revision is essential, but at the same time, remember not to swamp your answer with anecdotes, names, dates, places, etc; the purpose of the essay is to analyse and evaluate, not to tell a story.

    Good luck!
    Offline

    3
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by Sannn)
    Are you doing public protest against authority? I just finished both essays today
    No I'm doing civil rights, I've got until the 10th to do mine!
    Offline

    2
    ReputationRep:
    Memorise as many relevant facts as you can, and try to structure your essays like this:
    - Make a point, opening with one sentence that introduces what you're going to discuss in that paragraph
    - Give evidence, this is usually through factual information, and make sure it supports your point
    - Explain and deconstruct this evidence
    - Relate this back to the title of your essay, and also to your topic sentence.
    You probably knew this but that method is known as PEEL :')
    I did AS history last year (I averaged around 92-93%) and I always opened my essays with the sentence beginning "There are a multitude of reasons why..." or "It is debatable as to whether..." Having a couple of opening sentences really helped me Also, in the conclusion, I had a tendency to say "it is evident that..."
    I hope this helped, and good luck!
    Offline

    0
    ReputationRep:
    Hi,

    this is the structure I used last year (which got me an A). (I was on AQA)

    12 mark question
    -3 short paragraphs - each with a separate factor and 2 pieces of evidence explained
    - 2 or 3 sentence conclusion explaining which factor is most important

    24 mark question
    - 2 sentence introduction with basic background facts
    - 3 short paragraphs, as in 12 mark, agreeing with statement in question
    - 3 short paragraphs disagreeing with statement
    - short conclusion saying whether, on balance, I agree or disagree. (And vaguely discussing the difference between short and long term)
    Offline

    1
    ReputationRep:
    I didn't do History.
    Offline

    1
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by jbc123)
    Hi,

    this is the structure I used last year (which got me an A). (I was on AQA)

    12 mark question
    -3 short paragraphs - each with a separate factor and 2 pieces of evidence explained
    - 2 or 3 sentence conclusion explaining which factor is most important

    24 mark question
    - 2 sentence introduction with basic background facts
    - 3 short paragraphs, as in 12 mark, agreeing with statement in question
    - 3 short paragraphs disagreeing with statement
    - short conclusion saying whether, on balance, I agree or disagree. (And vaguely discussing the difference between short and long term)
    Hi, this would be going above the call of duty and obviously you don't have to, but it would be extremely helpful to me if you:

    Could you give me a rough/average word count for your short paragraphs? And possibly an example of your 24 mark question introduction?

    Also, I think in point 1 of the 12 marker you meant 3 pieces of evidence explained rather than 2? Or?
    Offline

    0
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by -aTOMic-)
    Hi, this would be going above the call of duty and obviously you don't have to, but it would be extremely helpful to me if you:

    Could you give me a rough/average word count for your short paragraphs? And possibly an example of your 24 mark question introduction?

    Also, I think in point 1 of the 12 marker you meant 3 pieces of evidence explained rather than 2? Or?

    For the 12 mark my entire answer was roughly 2 sides of A4 in my large handwriting, but I can't really remember how long it is.

    This is an example of one of my paragraphs from a 12 mark question, although I think they got a bit shorter by the exam:

    Linked with their anger at the conservatism of the government, the liberals were also dissatisfied at the inadequacy of the Emancipation of the Serfs. In 1861, Alexander II promised to liberate all
    23 million people tied to this archaic social structure. Instead, he forced them to stay in their Mir, and pay redemption payments for 49 years. The liberals sought true liberty for all. They wanted not just liberty in name, but also freedom of travel, free trade and freedom from unfair taxation. The former-serfs were unable travel freely, as they were tied to their Mir. Additionally, they were forced to pay for the privilege of freedoms seen as god-given in almost every other nation. In other words, none of the demands of liberals were met by 1881.


    When I said 2 pieces of evidence per paragraph, I just mean that I tried to put 2 statistics/specific facts in each paragraph.

    And below is one of my 24 mark introductions:
    For a generation, the Conservative Party had been the dominant force in British politics. In 1906, the Liberals won a landslide victory, not only reflecting, but also effecting a monumental shift in our country’s government. How this result came about, and whether it was truly a Conservative defeat or a Liberal victory poses an interesting question for historians.



    Offline

    0
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by Sannn)
    I don't mind Edexcel A2 history apart from the ****ing coursework...my teacher could not explain it for his life
    SAME!
    As History is a stroll in the park, kinda. once you get to A2, i don't even understand left from right tbh. sorry what's left and right again?
    Offline

    0
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by Sannn)
    I don't mind Edexcel A2 history apart from the ****ing coursework...my teacher could not explain it for his life
    Hi 5 on that my teachers a prick 2 going to get our mark back after easter if works out anything lower than a C am gna flip and rebel! Stupid USA and slavery!
    Offline

    3
    ReputationRep:
    I asked my tutor and his advice was don't panic about dates, focus more on well structured arguments. I have started making notes which link actions and effects and doing my best to memorise them. I haven't sat my exams yet but my tutor has a doctorate in history so I hope he knows what he's talking about!

    Just remembered I was sent this too. It's a list of things to avoid.

    TheGolden Rules for Writing Dreadful History Essays.


    Dreadfulhistory essays usually exhibit several of these characteristics, andsometimes they display them all!



    1. Leaping straight into the narrative parts of an essay without first setting out what the essay will cover and how.




    1. Sweeping statements and exaggeration.




    1. Careless application of the idea of inevitability. Most things in history were not inevitable! Adopting the language of ‘likelihood’ is always better.




    1. A Manichean viewpoint (describing historical developments in a black-and-white, or an overtly moral, manner).




    1. Sitting on the fence – especially when concluding an essay.




    1. Meaningless statements that seem, at first glance, to have some historical truth in them (e.g., ‘The people had found their voice at last’).




    1. Assertion of arguments without any supporting evidence. (Evidence is the most crucial element of any argument.)




    1. Use of clichés and colloquial language.




    1. Employing 21st century mores as a yardstick by which to judge the morals and actions of people from an earlier era. (Sometimes this is not overt, but simply comes over as treating the past as in some fashion ‘quaint’ or ‘curious’.)




    1. Using a great list of facts or an uncritical narrative as a substitute for carefully selected, explained, and appropriately used evidence.




    1. Taking evidence at face value.




    1. Jumping around chronologically in an apparently random manner.




    1. Failing to provide a chronology by which to judge the pace and nature of change.




    1. Introducing material which, whilst it might be interesting, has no relevance to the essay question.



    Don’tworry if you can’t eradicate all these errors immediately. Theimportant thing is to try (and keep trying – it may take severalassignments!) until you manage to do so.
    Offline

    1
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by RachaelBee)
    I asked my tutor and his advice was don't panic about dates, focus more on well structured arguments. I have started making notes which link actions and effects and doing my best to memorise them. I haven't sat my exams yet but my tutor has a doctorate in history so I hope he knows what he's talking about!

    Just remembered I was sent this too. It's a list of things to avoid.

    TheGolden Rules for Writing Dreadful History Essays.


    Dreadfulhistory essays usually exhibit several of these characteristics, andsometimes they display them all!



    1. Leaping straight into the narrative parts of an essay without first setting out what the essay will cover and how.




    1. Sweeping statements and exaggeration.




    1. Careless application of the idea of inevitability. Most things in history were not inevitable! Adopting the language of ‘likelihood’ is always better.




    1. A Manichean viewpoint (describing historical developments in a black-and-white, or an overtly moral, manner).




    1. Sitting on the fence – especially when concluding an essay.




    1. Meaningless statements that seem, at first glance, to have some historical truth in them (e.g., ‘The people had found their voice at last’).




    1. Assertion of arguments without any supporting evidence. (Evidence is the most crucial element of any argument.)




    1. Use of clichés and colloquial language.




    1. Employing 21st century mores as a yardstick by which to judge the morals and actions of people from an earlier era. (Sometimes this is not overt, but simply comes over as treating the past as in some fashion ‘quaint’ or ‘curious’.)




    1. Using a great list of facts or an uncritical narrative as a substitute for carefully selected, explained, and appropriately used evidence.




    1. Taking evidence at face value.




    1. Jumping around chronologically in an apparently random manner.




    1. Failing to provide a chronology by which to judge the pace and nature of change.




    1. Introducing material which, whilst it might be interesting, has no relevance to the essay question.



    Don’tworry if you can’t eradicate all these errors immediately. Theimportant thing is to try (and keep trying – it may take severalassignments!) until you manage to do so.
    Thanks for that - very helpful list so we know what to avoid!! I was just wondering if there was any chance I/we could see an example of your revision notes linking actions and effects? Sound very helpful
    Offline

    3
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by Student96)
    Thanks for that - very helpful list so we know what to avoid!! I was just wondering if there was any chance I/we could see an example of your revision notes linking actions and effects? Sound very helpful
    They're all in handwritten form in a notebook unfortunately. I used a book called 'My Revision Notes, AS AQA History Tsarist Russia' though to make them as the layout there is pretty good. Really clear and helps you actually make the links rather than get too bogged down in narration.
    Offline

    1
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by RachaelBee)
    They're all in handwritten form in a notebook unfortunately. I used a book called 'My Revision Notes, AS AQA History Tsarist Russia' though to make them as the layout there is pretty good. Really clear and helps you actually make the links rather than get too bogged down in narration.
    Ah ok thanks anyway will look out for that for my unit/exam board!
 
 
 
Poll
Which Fantasy Franchise is the best?

The Student Room, Get Revising and Marked by Teachers are trading names of The Student Room Group Ltd.

Register Number: 04666380 (England and Wales), VAT No. 806 8067 22 Registered Office: International House, Queens Road, Brighton, BN1 3XE

Quick reply
Reputation gems: You get these gems as you gain rep from other members for making good contributions and giving helpful advice.