What should I expect from AS Level History?

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wrombat
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So I'm starting Sixth Form in September, and apparently AS is a really big step up or change from GCSE, like not just the workload but also the level of thinking required, the relationship with your teacher and just everything. Anyone have any tips/advice on what I should expect or prepare or anything? Thanks
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Ayyyy Pizza
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I've just finished all my AS exams and have started A2. I would first of all for your four subjects buy a notebook and ringbinder folder for each. (Unless it's Maths or Further Maths.) This means that all the handouts and worksheets you'll be given can be safely stored along with your lesson notes.
In my History class my teacher heavily relied on us reading from the textbook in the lesson, with very little of his own information on a powerpoint. This never bothered me at GCSE, and logically so because I got an A, but it really bugged me this year. Anyway, I was on Edexcel, but I'm sure it will be the same for all exam boards: there is a LOT of content to learn. My advice is to ask your teacher(s) about what textbook you should buy, or see if they could give you one to read over the summer. I came into my first lesson with 0% knowledge on Mussolini's Fascist Italy but 20% knowledge on Hitler's Nazi Germany, and I can tell you that I was much better at the Germany unit than the Italy unit. Have a brief idea about how you will be examined; read up on some past papers if you can!
Come September, work from day one. What I mean by this is read a couple of pages or a chapter ahead, so when it comes to the lesson you'll have less chance of getting lost. Make sure your notes are neat and readable, and just read over them in the evening after you have your lesson. I printed out a copy of the specification for my subjects so I knew exactly what I needed to study when it came to revision. If your teacher happens to say a fact or statistic that isn't in the textbook, do write it down, because it will most likely be relevant. 'Reading around' is a term you will become familiar with, so cruise on down to the library and read a book about your course- you need a different view of the topic than what your course textbook is telling you, especially if you don't understand something. For mine I read a book about Nazi rise to power, written by a historian, because it was a lot meatier with fascinating statistics than the Edexcel book that was given to me. Lastly, write down any facts if you can- you want figures and numbers, so if a questions asks you about Mussolini's consolidation of power then you can whip that good fact about 14,000 people being sent to confino by 1943 from your memory banks!

AS History is so interesting, I'm such a nerd when it comes to History. I'm upset that my teacher wasn't very engaging, and he never asked us our thoughts and opinions of a subject so we never learn how to debate or argue a point, but if when term starts you find your teacher does the same thing, have a word with them about it. As Hermione says: "if in doubt, go to the library", which is so true because I spent lots of time in the library. I assume you're sitting your GCSEs so good luck with those! (Did I cover everything? )
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wrombat
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(Original post by Ayyyy Pizza)
I've just finished all my AS exams and have started A2. I would first of all for your four subjects buy a notebook and ringbinder folder for each. (Unless it's Maths or Further Maths.) This means that all the handouts and worksheets you'll be given can be safely stored along with your lesson notes.
In my History class my teacher heavily relied on us reading from the textbook in the lesson, with very little of his own information on a powerpoint. This never bothered me at GCSE, and logically so because I got an A, but it really bugged me this year. Anyway, I was on Edexcel, but I'm sure it will be the same for all exam boards: there is a LOT of content to learn. My advice is to ask your teacher(s) about what textbook you should buy, or see if they could give you one to read over the summer. I came into my first lesson with 0% knowledge on Mussolini's Fascist Italy but 20% knowledge on Hitler's Nazi Germany, and I can tell you that I was much better at the Germany unit than the Italy unit. Have a brief idea about how you will be examined; read up on some past papers if you can!
Come September, work from day one. What I mean by this is read a couple of pages or a chapter ahead, so when it comes to the lesson you'll have less chance of getting lost. Make sure your notes are neat and readable, and just read over them in the evening after you have your lesson. I printed out a copy of the specification for my subjects so I knew exactly what I needed to study when it came to revision. If your teacher happens to say a fact or statistic that isn't in the textbook, do write it down, because it will most likely be relevant. 'Reading around' is a term you will become familiar with, so cruise on down to the library and read a book about your course- you need a different view of the topic than what your course textbook is telling you, especially if you don't understand something. For mine I read a book about Nazi rise to power, written by a historian, because it was a lot meatier with fascinating statistics than the Edexcel book that was given to me. Lastly, write down any facts if you can- you want figures and numbers, so if a questions asks you about Mussolini's consolidation of power then you can whip that good fact about 14,000 people being sent to confino by 1943 from your memory banks!

AS History is so interesting, I'm such a nerd when it comes to History. I'm upset that my teacher wasn't very engaging, and he never asked us our thoughts and opinions of a subject so we never learn how to debate or argue a point, but if when term starts you find your teacher does the same thing, have a word with them about it. As Hermione says: "if in doubt, go to the library", which is so true because I spent lots of time in the library. I assume you're sitting your GCSEs so good luck with those! (Did I cover everything? )
Awesome! Thanks so much for all of the detail, that was so helpful Thanks, actually I've just finished them, so glad it's over! Best of luck with your A2
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