The Student Room Group

How to write AQA A-level history coursework sources? URGENT

Hi, I am doing how far slavery was the main cause of the American Civil War, 1775-1861. I've chosen the three sources I want to use (Three-fifths compromise, Calhoun's 'A Positive Good' speech, and Mississippi's secession declaration) and our teacher wants us to write about the sources initially separate to the essay.
What are we actually meant to be doing? Evaluating their use, summarising? Any help much appreciated :smile:
(edited 4 years ago)
Reply 1
hi, i do Edexcel history but im sure the structure should be similar. im doing my on Abraham lincoln and i compared 3 historians. in my coursework, i began with stating the main argument, is lincoln the 'great emancipator', then i linked in facts such as when the book was written and how that effected why they wrote about it in that particular way. so basically you're aim is to give an argument whilst using your sources as evidence to either back up or challenge your claim. for example, for me one of the historians is a black activist so, therefore, he would view lincoln as being racist. hope this makes sense. so you need to interpret your sources using the date it was published, what methods they used to get their information, etc....
I've handed in my coursework this week so I hope I can be of some help!

The mark scheme is fairly broad on this so there is some wriggle room in how you approach it. I did mine on the main threat to royal authority in England 1135-1235 and I split it up into three thematic sections: 1) Conquests and Foreign Possessions 2) Judicial and Ecclesiastical Reforms 3) Domestic Opposition and rebellion.

For each section, I effectively used a source as one of the points (just as you would in a Section B essay but the information is more specific, of course). For example, in section 2 I was arguing that historian Kate Norgate overplays the impact the Interdict had on England and used a source to support this, which was a letter from Pope Innocent III to King John requesting that bishops not be arrested. Rather than relating the tone and content to value as you would in a Section A essay on Paper 2, I related each to the context of Innocent III's Papacy to demonstrate that it's really very unusual for such a powerful Pope to be acting in this way, hence the theoretical power of the Church wasn't as significant in practical terms, etc. So it effectively served as an analysis involving provenance, tone, and content but in relation to an argument within the strand of the whole piece rather than an assessment of value (although of course that comes into it when it's supporting your argument).

I hope this makes a bit more sense - if not tell me and I'll try to clarify :-)
Original post by kitbyf
Hi, I am doing how far slavery was the main cause of the American Civil War, 1775-1861. I've chosen the three sources I want to use (Three-fifths compromise, Calhoun's 'A Positive Good' speech, and Mississippi's secession declaration) and our teacher wants us to write about the sources initially separate to the essay.
What are we actually meant to be doing? Evaluating their use, summarising? Any help much appreciated :smile:


Please help, I am doing the exact same question and do not know where to start

Quick Reply

Latest

Trending

Trending