general revision advice to begin with. I wrote this
'top 10 tips' for IB
students a few years ago and much of what I say applies to you.
Similarly the great John D Clare wrote
these detailed guidelines for his English GCSE historians.
article from the New Scientist provides the latest research
on effective revision.
There was a new syllabus for
2014 so before that the past papers are not identical themes to
those you can
expect this year. However, the skills are the same and
markschemes are still particularly relevant.
In Year 6 the exam is three periods long. The exam is divided into two sections. In
the first section you will be expected to analyse 5 sources, in
the second section you will write an essay.
In Year 6 Summer 2016 the topic for the source
analysis is How did the Nazi Party stay in power?
The paper will be four questions just as you
The first question checks your comprehension
of key terms and your ability to understand and interpret the
In the second question you will be expected to
compare and contrast two of the sources. This means you should
identify similarities and differences between the sources, where
they agree and disagree.
The third question asks you to evaluate the
usefulness of two sources. You do not need to compare the
sources but rather consider how useful the sources are in
helping us to find out about the past. You need to identify
strengths and weaknesses of both sources. For example, the
source may be very relevant to question we are considering but
it might not be very reliable. The
three Rs model should
remind you of the sort of things you need to consider.
The usefulness of sources
of the website provides a detailed examination of the
usefulness of the most popular types of source found in
Finally, you will asked to use all the sources
and your own knowledge to answer an essay style question. The question will be contentious,
something that will invite discussion. It is likely to be only
partly true. Your job is to use the sources - making sure to
refer to them in your answer - and use your own knowledge to
support your answer. This is an opportunity to show what you
know, in addition to the information contained in the five
You will write one essay from a choice of
The topics are:
1. Modernism and Modernity.
Question will focus on how and why society and culture was
transformed in the period 1900-30. How important were changes in
the economy? What was the influence of technological
development? What was the impact of the Great War? Did
everything change? Was everyone's life transformed? etc.
2. The causes of World War II. Question
will focus on the historiographical debate surrounding the
causes of the war. Was the war inevitable? Did Hitler plan the
war? Could the democracies have prevented war? etc.
3. The nature of World War II. Question
will focus on the nature of the war. What is total war? To what
extent was the Second World war a 'total war'? To what extent
was the Second World War different to previous wars? etc.
My top 5 tips on
how to write an essay.