The Pre-U History course is designed to allow students to investigate content and develop their analytical written skills to an undergraduate level. The course allows students to engage in a deeper understanding of 20th century history in order to come to an evaluative judgement on the key events of this era. It encourages students to develop the ability to engage and be critical of historical perspectives of the past. In doing this, they will be encouraged to justify their own historical opinion of events that have occurred.
The course consists of 4 different modules- successful candidates will study Twentieth Century European History, Twentieth Century British History, Civil Rights 1954-1980 and a personal investigation of 4000 words.
All candidates will be assessed in 3 linear exams at the end of Year 13. The Personal Investigation is completed in Year 13 and is externally assessed by Cambridge Pre-U.
Students study two modules in Year 12. Twentieth Century European History focuses on the development of European History from the Russian Revolution of 1917. Students will analyses the revolution itself, the Treaty of Versailles and League of Nations, Stalin’s reign in the USSR, the Cold War and the decline of the USSR.
Twentieth Century British History focuses on the key political developments in British domestic and international relations during the era. This includes topics such as the rise of the Labour Party, the fall of the Liberals, Appeasement, the emergence of consensus era politics and the controversy surrounding Margaret Thatcher’s time in power. During Year 12, students will be assessed using Pre-U past paper questions under timed conditions, to develop their ability to produce high quality written work under pressure.
In Year 13, students will study the remaining 2 modules required for the completion of the PRE-U course. This includes Civil Rights in America 1954-1980. The content for this course begins from the Brown vs. Topeka ruling of 1954, which ruled segregation in education as unlawful under US law. Students will then analyse the significance of key events such as the Montgomery Bus Boycott, the Little Rock Nine and the Sit-ins and the Freedom Rides. In addition to this, we analyse the significance of key figures in the Civil Rights Movement such as Martin Luther King and Malcolm X as well as the role of resistance groups and white opposition in the movement. This module is examined through a source-based paper at the end of Year 13.
In Year 13, students will also complete a 4000 word personal investigation based predominantly on independent research on a topic of their choice within the module. As each Pre-U History module is worth 25%, students will then sit 3 written exams at the end of Year 13 based on the content of the modules studied between Year 12 and Year 13. This, alongside successful completion of their personal investigation, will gain them a strong History Pre-U qualification.