A Level

A Level History

Our A Level in History allows students to select from over 50 topics of British and non-British history, going beyond the most commonly taught areas. You will develop critical and reflective thinking, which you will demonstrate in an essay exploring a topic of your own choosing.

Assessment Overview

Students select a total of three topics in British and non-British history to study in three units, creating a qualification that is both broad and coherent. The topics selected must have a chronological range of at least 200 years.

Unit group 1

Study is source-based and develops different historical approaches. One topic is selected from 13 options available:

Unit group 2

The 24 topics available in this group focus on non-British history, from the rise of Islam to the end of apartheid in South Africa, emphasising the application of historical knowledge, understanding and judgement. Students select one topic to study:

Unit group 3

The topics in this group allow study of change and continuity over a substantial period of time, with in-depth studies focusing on interpretations of significant individuals, events, developments etc. The 21 topic options cover both British and non-British history over a period from the early Anglo-Saxons to the Arab Spring.

Topic based essay

This is an opportunity for students to bring together many of the skills developed through their work on the topics to an independently researched enquiry of their own choosing.


Component Marks Duration Weighting
British period study and enquiry (unit group 1) 50 1 hours 30 mins 25%
Students study one of 13 units available
Non-British period study (unit group 2) 30 1 hour 15%
Students study one of 24 units available
Thematic study and historical interpretations (unit group 3) 80  2 hours 30 mins 40%

Students study one of 21 units available

Topic-based essay 20  3000 to 4000 word essay. Non-exam assessment. The essay is on a topic of the learner’s choice, which may arise out of content studied elsewhere in the course.

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