A-Level History

Overview

We are not makers of history. We are made by history.

-Martin Luther King, Jr.


Studying history informs the present and gives you the skills you need to prepare for the future. Apart from being very interesting, history is useful for a host of different careers, and life too! In fact, history is very practical and teaches you vital skills that employers want. At A-Level you will unwrap more complex layers of history, delve deeper into historical evidence and debate issues that inform your understanding of the present.

Key Information

  • Qualification: A-Level

  • Exam Board: AQA

Entry Requirements

  • English 5+

  • Maths 4+

  • History 5+

Useful Links

Paper 1: Breadth Study


  • The study of significant historical developments over a period of around 100 years

  • written exam: 2 hours 30 minutes

  • three questions (one compulsory)

  • 80 marks

  • 40% of A-level

  • Section A – one compulsory question linked to historical interpretations (30 marks)

  • Section B – two from three essays (2 x 25 marks)

Paper 2: Depth Study


  • The study in depth of a period of major historical change or development and associated primary evidence.

  • written exam: 2 hours 30 minutes

  • three questions (one compulsory)

  • 80 marks

  • 40% of A-level

  • Section A – one compulsory question linked to primary sources or sources contemporary to the period (30 marks)

  • Section B – two from three essays (2 x 25 marks)

Paper 3: Historical Investigation (Personal Study)

  • Personal study based on a topic of the student's choice. (context of approximately 100 years)

  • 3500–4500 words

  • 40 marks

  • 20% of A-level

  • marked by teachers

  • moderated by AQA

  • students must cover a chronological range of at least 200 years.

Progression


There are a range of degrees that History A-Level can lead on to including Law, Politics, Public sector, Business and many more. Studying history can also open up a world of career opportunities, including:

  • secondary school teacher.

  • journalist.

  • Civil Service administrator.

  • solicitor.

  • archivist.

  • curator.

  • heritage manager.

  • academic librarian

What goes well with History?

  • Psychology

  • English

  • Sociology

  • Geography