Is my history coursework too short to do well?

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imscaredhelp
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#1
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#1
Our coursework has to be 3500-4000 words. Its pretty much finished, and i'm at around 3600 words. I'm not sure if i have included enough sources - we are supposed to have around 15 i think and i have 11 (6 secondary 5 primary) - i'm not sure how i ended up with more interpretations lol. In most regular essays i write less than most other people - but still achieve As and Bs. I could try and shove an extra primary source in there but i'm not sure if it would be much good. I wouldn't be disappointed with a B - but i would really like to achieve an A as i'm quite proud of what i have written
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username4406810
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#2
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#2
(Original post by imscaredhelp)
Our coursework has to be 3500-4000 words. Its pretty much finished, and i'm at around 3600 words. I'm not sure if i have included enough sources - we are supposed to have around 15 i think and i have 11 (6 secondary 5 primary) - i'm not sure how i ended up with more interpretations lol. In most regular essays i write less than most other people - but still achieve As and Bs. I could try and shove an extra primary source in there but i'm not sure if it would be much good. I wouldn't be disappointed with a B - but i would really like to achieve an A as i'm quite proud of what i have written
15 sources? Are you doing AQA History?
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imscaredhelp
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#3
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(Original post by Keir Starmer)
15 sources? Are you doing AQA History?
no - OCR history
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username4406810
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#4
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(Original post by imscaredhelp)
no - OCR history
Wow, that seems like white a lot. For AQA A level history coursework we use 2 historians interpretations and 3 primary sources.
Our word limit is the same. I'm not too sure how you would approach it. Has your teacher given you an indication of how in depth you need to do this?
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imscaredhelp
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#5
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#5
(Original post by Keir Starmer)
Wow, that seems like white a lot. For AQA A level history coursework we use 2 historians interpretations and 3 primary sources.
Our word limit is the same. I'm not too sure how you would approach it. Has your teacher given you an indication of how in depth you need to do this?
Most of my essay just consists of analysing historian interpretations, most knowledge in there is just used for stating how accurate a historian is likely to be. I'm not sure how i would only talk about 2 interpretations - i have 3 factors i talk about with several historians backing up each.
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username4406810
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#6
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(Original post by imscaredhelp)
Most of my essay just consists of analysing historian interpretations, most knowledge in there is just used for stating how accurate a historian is likely to be. I'm not sure how i would only talk about 2 interpretations - i have 3 factors i talk about with several historians backing up each.
What is your essay question?
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imscaredhelp
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#7
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#7
(Original post by Keir Starmer)
What is your essay question?
'To what extent was the Chernobyl nuclear disaster the real reason behind the collapse of the Soviet Union?'
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ageshallnot
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#8
(Original post by imscaredhelp)
Most of my essay just consists of analysing historian interpretations, most knowledge in there is just used for stating how accurate a historian is likely to be. I'm not sure how i would only talk about 2 interpretations - i have 3 factors i talk about with several historians backing up each.
I'm not knocking you at all, but I find it depressing that opinions seem to be valued more than knowledge.
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imscaredhelp
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#9
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(Original post by ageshallnot)
I'm not knocking you at all, but I find it depressing that opinions seem to be valued more than knowledge.
Actually i don't see it like that. I am able to disagree with historians with my own knowledge, which i have done throughout. The interpretations just give a basis for what opinions already exist, and i can work around these historians. Knowledge and the truth is still what the essay is about
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redmeercat
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#10
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#10
If possible, I'd say that adding in 3-4 (even just primary sources) more might be a good idea... it isn't entirely based on sources, but in my class we definitely found that the people who got 30+ marks had used 15+ sources. I used 19 in the end and my teacher said that it was a good balance, but I found that (once or twice) I could find a primary source which initially seemed useful, but which had a big flaw which I could discredit fairly quickly and go back in support of whichever source I had been going for before. That might be a way to demonstrate wider knowledge
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artful_lounger
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#11
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#11
(Original post by ageshallnot)
I'm not knocking you at all, but I find it depressing that opinions seem to be valued more than knowledge.
There is no abstract, objective "knowledge" about history. Everything was written down by someone, for varying purposes with varying intended audiences, influenced by their own perspectives and biases. The academic field of history is then to look at these different perspectives and synthesise them to write about what was likely to have happened in fact on the basis of the (limited and biased) evidence available, and also exploring why the thing they were writing about was important to those people who were writing about it, and what that tells us about them as individuals and the cultural bounds in which they existed. Hence, the point being to write about how the student interprets the evidence, and also how they evaluate other prior historian's interpretations.
Last edited by artful_lounger; 1 year ago
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999tigger
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#12
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#12
(Original post by imscaredhelp)
Our coursework has to be 3500-4000 words. Its pretty much finished, and i'm at around 3600 words. I'm not sure if i have included enough sources - we are supposed to have around 15 i think and i have 11 (6 secondary 5 primary) - i'm not sure how i ended up with more interpretations lol. In most regular essays i write less than most other people - but still achieve As and Bs. I could try and shove an extra primary source in there but i'm not sure if it would be much good. I wouldn't be disappointed with a B - but i would really like to achieve an A as i'm quite proud of what i have written
If its good enough quality then you should be fine. One thing about words though is all things being equal, then it allows you to explore things at a greater depth. Depth and fine tuned answers are something that escapes a lot of students. At least it wasnt 2000 words.
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ageshallnot
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#13
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#13
imscaredhelp and artful_lounger

I take your point but I fear that the balance has swung a little too far in this direction since I did my history degree. Then, historiography was perhaps too much of an afterthought; now it appears to be the only thought. 😁
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ewpfs
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#14
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#14
I would try add a few more sources - what I did in mine for OCR was I would use a primary source and then either defend/argue against it with a secondary, or use a secondary and prove/disprove it with a primary, because that helps develop analysis in your coursework as you’re putting the sources to work! Good luck
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