A Level History

Assessment Details

Students selecting History at George Spencer College follow the OCR Specification


Year 12

AS History is broken down into 2 units:


Unit 1 - British Period Study and Enquiry (50% AS and 25% A2)

  • We have chosen Alfred the Great (exam)



  • Written examination: 1 hour 20 minutes
  • Candidates will be required to answer two questions worth 30 marks each.
  • The questions will require candidates to present historical explanations and assess their significance in the historical context of events, individuals' ideas, attitudes and/or beliefs, and the ways in which they influenced behaviours and action.



Unit 2 - Non British Period Study (50% AS, 15% A2)

  • We have chosen Russia 1894-1941 (exam)



  • Written examination: 1 hour 20 minutes.
  • Candidates are required to answer two source-based questions for their chosen topic, question (a) and question (b)The first question (a) is worth 20 marks and will focus on reaching a judgement by analysis, cross-referencing and evaluating source material.
  • The second question (b) is worth 40 marks and will ask candidates to address an historical view or claim using two sources in conjunction with their own knowledge. A choice of questions will be provided for each topic.


Year 13

Unit 3 - Thematic study and historial interpretations 40% A2

  •   We have chosen Rebellion and Disorder under the Tudors 1485-1603 (exam)

This unit will study the nature and frequency of rebellion and disorder in the Tudor period. It will focus on the major rebellions in the reigns of Henry VIII, Edward VI, Mary and Elizabeth, with analysis of their religious, economic and political causes



Written examination: 2 hours.


Candidates will be required to answer the following from their chosen topic:

  • one question in Section A out of a choice of two (30 marks). The essay questions will have an analytical focus that will require candidates to reach a substantiated judgement on a historical issue or problem
  • one question in Section B out of a choice of two (40 marks). The question will require candidates to compare the provided source material while exploring an issue of historical debate, and to reach substantiated judgements in the light of their own knowledge and understanding of the issues of interpretation and controversy.



Unit 4 - Topic based essay (20% A2)

3000-4000 wird essay (non-exam)




  • All students are provided with textbooks
  • Students are required to bring their textbook and their unit folder to all lessons. This folder should contain previous lesson hand-outs and notes, exam questions and an assessment record sheet.
  • In addition, there are a number of other excellent textbooks available on loan from one of the History Teachers
  • There is also an extensive Moodle Site with articles and extension reading.