Help with first History Essay? AS Level? Watch

Abdo332
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Hey guys! I'm self-studying History A Level using the CIE Exam Board and have just taken my first attempt at writing an essay. (so don't laugh)
Honestly, I have no clue how exactly to approach the question and what exactly it is that I have to write The question is relatively straight forward but I have no clue as to what I should include,how many words, how to start it off, how to close it, whether it's a knowledge and understanding question or a rather argumentative one where I judge and argue..etc.

Anywhoo, it's about The French Revolution and this is what I have down so far, it's only 300 words and I know it's not essay format..etc but any help I can have would be highly appreciated...


What do you think was the most significant reason for the outbreak of the French Revolution in 1789?


There are many reasons for the outbreak of the French Revolution, however the most significant of these and one which had substantial effect was undoubtedly the refusal of the nobility to accept reforms that would interfere with their traditional privileges. Numerous tax exemptions all fell in favour for the nobles, imposing the heavy burden of taxes on the working class. These exemptions, most notably the tax laws, only added to the already present hostility between the social classes. Interference in continuous wars had took their toll and the country was in the midst of a financial crisis. Ministers Viscount Calonne and Jacques Necker had tried to raise money for the monarchy by imposing higher taxes on the wealthy however both acts of social justice were both defeated. Unable to tax the nobility out of tradition, King Louis called a meeting of the Estates General upon desperate measure. However, this only fueled the animosity between the middle class and the nobles as all votes in favour of reform were continuously outvoted by the nobility and the church in arbitrary collective voting. In addition, King Louis XVI had proven his lack of leadership qualities, offering weak support to the first and second estate but failing to force his own will or make firm decisions regarding the matter of reforms. After failing to address their demands, the Third Estate broke away from the Estates General in order to form an independent assembly that more fairly reflected the demands of the lower classes. The creation of the National Assembly after failing to address the majority’s demands regarding taxing the nobles upon other things was the major source that sparked the revolution in 1789.
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LawGirl96
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Hi, my AS-level course was not on the French revolution, but I think I can help!
Firtsly, describe the situation briefly, like what the revolution was, but only in a sentence in the introduction then you must include a list of the causes you are going to include but only a mention, not in depth.
Moreover, each of your paragraphs must start with stating the cause, then explain the effects of it and why it lead to the revolution and end with referring back to the question, i.e. why this is an important cause.
The conclusion must say which cause you think is the most important and why, but don't add any new information, just sum up what you've already said in the essay.
Hope this helped
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username1210437
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Hiya


I got an A in AS History this year, my course was The French Revolution and The Battle of Hastings..so I think I can be of some help haha I was completely the same btw.. I'm not sure what your ALPS is for History, but I was predicted a C.. so whatever your predicted grade is, or this fear of not doing well, don't listen to predictions (It's a load of bull! You'll do fine). Anyways, I actually to this day don't really have a set structure in writing my essays, I sort of just wing it. However, I think I can give you a few little tips


So for your introduction you've given us, it's quite.. well, big. For introductions you really want to be as vague as possible, but still outlining the basis of your argument. You want to keep referring as much as possible to significance as well perhaps referencing different perspectives and why you believe them invalid. See, you're sort of making your essay into a story, and you have to be careful! By story, I mean you're telling us "This happened because this happened, causing this to happen".. I used to get quite carried away and my teacher always told me to try and stick to answering the question.. because although you want to show holistically you have a greater knowledge of why you think the French Revolution happened, you need to make other points.. such as the politicalisation of the Third Estate, Bad Harvests, The Tennis Court Oath etc You need to tell us, why out of every single reason, you think that your reason tops them all. You need to give a holistic interpretation, as well as zooming in on details. It's all about finding balance, and it's quite hard to explain. Honestly, as this is your first essay, your teacher will tell you what's wrong and what's right, and you just build and build from there. You, along with many if not all in your class, won't be achieving A's straight away, if you do, then wow. GCSE to AS is a big step, and it's takes time to get used to the new ways.


You'll be fine. I can tell by your writing you'll get there in the end
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Abdo332
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(Original post by gstylianou)
Hi, my AS-level course was not on the French revolution, but I think I can help!
Firtsly, describe the situation briefly, like what the revolution was, but only in a sentence in the introduction then you must include a list of the causes you are going to include but only a mention, not in depth.
Moreover, each of your paragraphs must start with stating the cause, then explain the effects of it and why it lead to the revolution and end with referring back to the question, i.e. why this is an important cause.
The conclusion must say which cause you think is the most important and why, but don't add any new information, just sum up what you've already said in the essay.
Hope this helped
yes! thank you!
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Abdo332
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(Original post by EmmaaNoeel)
Hiya


I got an A in AS History this year, my course was The French Revolution and The Battle of Hastings..so I think I can be of some help haha I was completely the same btw.. I'm not sure what your ALPS is for History, but I was predicted a C.. so whatever your predicted grade is, or this fear of not doing well, don't listen to predictions (It's a load of bull! You'll do fine). Anyways, I actually to this day don't really have a set structure in writing my essays, I sort of just wing it. However, I think I can give you a few little tips


So for your introduction you've given us, it's quite.. well, big. For introductions you really want to be as vague as possible, but still outlining the basis of your argument. You want to keep referring as much as possible to significance as well perhaps referencing different perspectives and why you believe them invalid. See, you're sort of making your essay into a story, and you have to be careful! By story, I mean you're telling us "This happened because this happened, causing this to happen".. I used to get quite carried away and my teacher always told me to try and stick to answering the question.. because although you want to show holistically you have a greater knowledge of why you think the French Revolution happened, you need to make other points.. such as the politicalisation of the Third Estate, Bad Harvests, The Tennis Court Oath etc You need to tell us, why out of every single reason, you think that your reason tops them all. You need to give a holistic interpretation, as well as zooming in on details. It's all about finding balance, and it's quite hard to explain. Honestly, as this is your first essay, your teacher will tell you what's wrong and what's right, and you just build and build from there. You, along with many if not all in your class, won't be achieving A's straight away, if you do, then wow. GCSE to AS is a big step, and it's takes time to get used to the new ways.


You'll be fine. I can tell by your writing you'll get there in the end

thank you so much I've just got one more question, is this good/long enough for an intro?

Many historians tend to have differing point of views on whether some points were of equal significance in contributing to the outbreak of The French Revolution in 1789. Regional divisions, The Enlightenment and social hierarchies tend to be a few of the major principals associated with the out lash of The Revolution in the late 18th Century. However, none seem to be as equally important as the unfair exemptions which had favoured the nobility and that had ultimately contributed to the financial debt of France at the time.
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AndrewGrace
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(Original post by Abdo332)
Hey guys! I'm self-studying History A Level using the CIE Exam Board and have just taken my first attempt at writing an essay. (so don't laugh)
Honestly, I have no clue how exactly to approach the question and what exactly it is that I have to write The question is relatively straight forward but I have no clue as to what I should include,how many words, how to start it off, how to close it, whether it's a knowledge and understanding question or a rather argumentative one where I judge and argue..etc.

Anywhoo, it's about The French Revolution and this is what I have down so far, it's only 300 words and I know it's not essay format..etc but any help I can have would be highly appreciated...


What do you think was the most significant reason for the outbreak of the French Revolution in 1789?


There are many reasons for the outbreak of the French Revolution, however the most significant of these and one which had substantial effect was undoubtedly the refusal of the nobility to accept reforms that would interfere with their traditional privileges. Numerous tax exemptions all fell in favour for the nobles, imposing the heavy burden of taxes on the working class. These exemptions, most notably the tax laws, only added to the already present hostility between the social classes. Interference in continuous wars had took their toll and the country was in the midst of a financial crisis. Ministers Viscount Calonne and Jacques Necker had tried to raise money for the monarchy by imposing higher taxes on the wealthy however both acts of social justice were both defeated. Unable to tax the nobility out of tradition, King Louis called a meeting of the Estates General upon desperate measure. However, this only fueled the animosity between the middle class and the nobles as all votes in favour of reform were continuously outvoted by the nobility and the church in arbitrary collective voting. In addition, King Louis XVI had proven his lack of leadership qualities, offering weak support to the first and second estate but failing to force his own will or make firm decisions regarding the matter of reforms. After failing to address their demands, the Third Estate broke away from the Estates General in order to form an independent assembly that more fairly reflected the demands of the lower classes. The creation of the National Assembly after failing to address the majority’s demands regarding taxing the nobles upon other things was the major source that sparked the revolution in 1789.
This is nowhere near an AS level standard introduction, this is simply a story

-What were the different reasons?- This needs to be clear
-Which on do YOU think is the most important?
-Briefly what does the historiography suggest?
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Abdo332
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(Original post by AndrewGrace)
This is nowhere near an AS level standard introduction, this is simply a story

-What were the different reasons?- This needs to be clear
-Which on do YOU think is the most important?
-Briefly what does the historiography suggest?

thanks for the reply

Do I need to address all of the major reasons with explanations for each? Or just casual reference for them? Should I address them all in a way in which I recognize their importance but contrast it with the one I find most important?

Also, what do you think should be included in the introduction?

sorry for all of the questions. thanks in advance for your help.
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AndrewGrace
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(Original post by Abdo332)
thanks for the reply

Do I need to address all of the major reasons with explanations for each? Or just casual reference for them? Should I address them all in a way in which I recognize their importance but contrast it with the one I find most important?

Also, what do you think should be included in the introduction?

sorry for all of the questions. thanks in advance for your help.
What do you think was the most significant reason for the outbreak of the French Revolution in 1789?

-Opening Statement: The most significant reason behind the outbreak of the French Revolution was...
-Following Statement: Nevertheless this must also be consider alongside (3 other reasons)...
-Last Statement: This view is supported in the historiography by...

You only need to provide a casual reference to each reason in your introduction. The explanations are provided in your 4 main paragraphs
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mervynnnnn
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I'm not sure I can help much on the French Revolution cause I didn't focus on that. I did Russian Revolution instead. Anyways you do not have to worry about the number of words. This is GCSE or GCE anymore. My lecturer would tell me to write at least a page long. There are many ways to start the essay, I would normally start with the background/context of the chosen topic. Then moving on to the main paragraphs, there is a method I use. PEEL. Points, Example, Explain, Link back to the question. Focus on relevant points. Do not add any unnecessary points. Most importantly, time yourself at 15 minutes once you get the hang of it since you have 3 other essays to finish in 1 hour 30 minutes. Good luck with the essay and there are 4 essay plans on the syllabus content. Use them, they're really good. These plans are how the setter sets the question, they just twist the words around to make it seem unfamiliar. Analyse the topic carefully before doing the essay. Another heads up, part a questions will always ask for facts, part b questions always ask you to challenge and support a claim. Good luck.
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Molls1996
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Just chill out and go about it slowly.
If you're not sure where too start then write a detailed essay plan.
Slowly, as you continue your essay plans can get shorter, and will eventually take less than five minutes.
You're starting early, so I'm confident that you'll do really well!
Good luck :-)
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Abdo332
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(Original post by Molls1996)
Just chill out and go about it slowly.
If you're not sure where too start then write a detailed essay plan.
Slowly, as you continue your essay plans can get shorter, and will eventually take less than five minutes.
You're starting early, so I'm confident that you'll do really well!
Good luck :-)

thank you!
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Abdo332
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(Original post by mervynnnnn)
I'm not sure I can help much on the French Revolution cause I didn't focus on that. I did Russian Revolution instead. Anyways you do not have to worry about the number of words. This is GCSE or GCE anymore. My lecturer would tell me to write at least a page long. There are many ways to start the essay, I would normally start with the background/context of the chosen topic. Then moving on to the main paragraphs, there is a method I use. PEEL. Points, Example, Explain, Link back to the question. Focus on relevant points. Do not add any unnecessary points. Most importantly, time yourself at 15 minutes once you get the hang of it since you have 3 other essays to finish in 1 hour 30 minutes. Good luck with the essay and there are 4 essay plans on the syllabus content. Use them, they're really good. These plans are how the setter sets the question, they just twist the words around to make it seem unfamiliar. Analyse the topic carefully before doing the essay. Another heads up, part a questions will always ask for facts, part b questions always ask you to challenge and support a claim. Good luck.
thanks for your input!
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