Exam Board - Edexcel


What is History A level and why study it?

Hopefully students at Isaac Newton Academy who study History will enjoy the fascination of people, patterns and change in the past. History combines the excitement of exploration and discovery with the sense of reward born of successfully confronting and making sense of complex and challenging problems. An A level History course allows you to further study events you know something about to a deeper level, and learn about new events and people, building on skills developed at KS3 and GCSE.


At INA History course at A level will be taken from Edexcel. Students will study 3 topics which will be examined at the end of Year 13. The exams account for 80% of the final grade. The exam topics are:

  • Paper 1: 1G: Germany and West Germany, 1918–89
  • Paper 2: 2G.1: The rise and fall of fascism in Italy, c1911–46
  • Paper 3: 31: Rebellion and disorder under the Tudors, 1485–1603


Students will also complete a piece of coursework in History, which contributes up to 20% of the final grade. The coursework involves students researching and then writing a 3,500-word essay on a particular historical topic.


Why pick History A level?

The purpose of historical inquiry is not simply to present facts but to search for an interpretation of the past. Historians attempt to find patterns and establish meaning through the analysis and evaluation of evidence. Students of history will be required to construct a reasoned argument, listen to and assess the opinions of other people, and examine critically a wide range of primary sources.


The exams will assess your skills at:

  • Recall and application of knowledge of historical events studied.
  • Constructing a reasoned argument based on careful selection of evidence and explanation.
  • Critical analysis and evaluation of a wide range of historical sources both primary and secondary, and events for their significance.
  • Using historical inquiry skills for forming careful and complex interpretations of the past.


Studying History is fun. The best reason for taking a history course is that the past fascinates you and you enjoy studying it. The study of History has a civilising influence on our society. It is the source of our political, social and ethical ideals.


Where next?

History is a very popular choice for A level. Russell Group universities list History as a facilitating subject, so it is useful and can benefit your study in a broad range of degree courses at university.


Students can go on to university and then specialise in a large range of subject areas, from the History of Art, Architecture, Archaeology, Journalism, Education, the Law, Politics or even to the History of War. History always complements other subjects. It provides skills and understanding that will always be valuable in any career.


What are the entrance requirements?

Grade 6 in GCSE History.


Who do I need to see for more information?

Ms R Priestley, Head of History