How difficult is History A level? Watch

Rajive
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How hard is A level History if you haven't done it at GCSE?
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tom.2358
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As long as you find the subject interesting and your ok with doing some extra reading around the subject you should be fine doing it even without GCSE, the way you write the essays for a-level is different anyway so everyone will be starting something new so you wont be behind.
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Rajive
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(Original post by tom.2358)
As long as you find the subject interesting and your ok with doing some extra reading around the subject you should be fine doing it even without GCSE, the way you write the essays for a-level is different anyway so everyone will be starting something new so you wont be behind.
Thanks for your answer,
Would extra reading be classed as reading a few historian books?
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Qmwnebrv
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I didn't take history gcse but take a level (didn't expect to until a week into term when i thought why not) and its fine.
Just turn up to class and do the work, the essays I found fine bc they teach the technique to do. Mainly the most difficult thing about the a level is that there is a lot of content to remember but it is achievable.
Historys now one of my favourite classes.
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Rajive
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(Original post by Qmwnebrv)
I didn't take history gcse but take a level (didn't expect to until a week into term when i thought why not) and its fine.
Just turn up to class and do the work, the essays I found fine bc they teach the technique to do. Mainly the most difficult thing about the a level is that there is a lot of content to remember but it is achievable.
Historys now one of my favourite classes.
Thanks for your answer.

Is there a coursework element to it?
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tom.2358
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(Original post by Rajive)
Thanks for your answer,
Would extra reading be classed as reading a few historian books?
Yeah,I bought an extra text book the school didn't provide but our teacher recommended, we were also given a reading list of books that we could read the summer after GCSE`s to get an idea of the topics we were going to study.
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Rajive
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(Original post by tom.2358)
Yeah,I bought an extra text book the school didn't provide but our teacher recommended, we were also given a reading list of books that we could read the summer after GCSE`s to get an idea of the topics we were going to study.
Ok I am probably going to get a B in GCSE English Language. Do you think that is okay in regards to the point essay part of the course?
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BB8
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Personally history is the hardest of my A levels (the other two being maths and biology) and I took it at GCSE.

However the A level is different from the GCSE, there'll be different content and the essays will be longer and structured differently. If you do well at things like English or other essay based subjects you shouldn't find it too hard to work out how to write the essays. If you don't do well in English you might find it harder.

As for coursework, it depends which exam board you're on
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Rajive
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(Original post by BB8)
Personally history is the hardest of my A levels (the other two being maths and biology) and I took it at GCSE.

However the A level is different from the GCSE, there'll be different content and the essays will be longer and structured differently. If you do well at things like English or other essay based subjects you shouldn't find it too hard to work out how to write the essays. If you don't do well in English you might find it harder.

As for coursework, it depends which exam board you're on
So would a B in English language for example be fine?
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BB8
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(Original post by Rajive)
So would a B in English language for example be fine?
Probably.. If you were getting any lower, I'd say no, but a B should be okay. You'll have to work hard next year though!
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tom.2358
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(Original post by Rajive)
Ok I am probably going to get a B in GCSE English Language. Do you think that is okay in regards to the point essay part of the course?
English was my worst Gcse, I got a C, and I still find history essay writing quite easy, the only problem I think I might have is doing them in the time limit for exams.
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Rajive
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(Original post by tom.2358)
English was my worst Gcse, I got a C, and I still find history essay writing quite easy, the only problem I think I might have is doing them in the time limit for exams.
Okay that's quite reassuring.
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Rajive
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The Empire Odyssey
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(Original post by Rajive)
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I don't think it's that difficult if your mind leans towards essays and the humanities' subjects.

I never did History at GCSE, but was getting Bs in my essays and so forth. I didn't enjoy History so I dropped it before the AS exams.

I was really naive cause I only did History because I was allowed to do 4 subjects. But I could cope but I only picked History cause it was the only option and I didn't fancy doing anything else.

I would say is make sure you know what History you'll be learning about. I'm not fond on Modern History and that's pretty much what we did. I did enjoy learning about History of War, which was very interesting, as I was doing WW1 Literature in AS Lit. But the other side of History which was Italian Fascism just bored the crap outta me and till this day I still don't know what it means.

So I would say, if you enjoy the history that iwll be taught in your lessons and the history dept. have a good rep and being good teachers then go for it. Cause for the History of War, I was taught by the head of department and we did many things such as class discussions, group work, watching and taking notes from documentaries, different sources etc. But with Fascism we weren't taught anything. The teacher just read from the textbook and told us to answer the questions. This style of teaching works with some people, but for me it made learning about History VERY boring!

So I say, make sure you know what's being taught and if possible, which teacher you'll be getting.
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twhiddy
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(Original post by Rajive)
How hard is A level History if you haven't done it at GCSE?
I'm in exactly the same position! I never took History GCSE but I'm taking it at A Level. English is my favourite subject and because History is essay-based I think it'll be a good subject for me although I feel it will be challenging. From what I've gathered, everyone starts at the same level - GCSE or not - so it doesn't necessarily mean you'll be at a disadvantage to say a person with a GCSE in History. The only advantage I've heard of is that GCSE students were used to answering source based questions and it came naturally to them (it won't take long to get used to it I'm guessing - as long as the work is put in).
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electrahearts
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I think it will be fine to be honest. It's true that those who did history at GCSE will be put at a small advantage as they'll have experience in essay writing methods/source analysis. But to be honest, A-Level methods are quite different so everyone will be learning how to answer the questions from scratch.
The course we're doing (AQA) involves coursework at A2 which is like university style research, that is completely different from GCSE, so everybody's in the same position.
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