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Everything happening around us today has been influenced by and is a result of what has happened in the past. History can help us predict what could happen in the future. Students develop transferable skills of analysis, prioritisation, drawing conclusions, decision making and effective communication.

Key Facts

Start Dates:

  • 9 September 2024
  • 6 January 2025


  • Bournemouth
  • Brighton
  • Oxford

Entry level:

  • Academic: Completed 10 years of schooling (GCSE or equivalent)
  • English: IELTS 5.5 or equivalent

Minimum age:

  • 16


  • 2 Academic Years (3 terms)
  • We also offer entry from Year 12


  • Average 7 hours per week for each A-level subject (plus homework and private study)

Learning outcomes

  • Gain UK national university entrance qualification
  • Raise English to university level
  • Develop study skills required at degree level
  • Develop specialist subject expertise

Course content and structure

The following content outline is based on the Edexcel exam board. Please note that exam boards may vary from college to college.

Edexcel A level History specification offers a wide and stimulating choice of content including British, European and world history, with options covering areas such as Medieval England and the British Empire. Schools can design their own teaching programmes.

Sample content

Lancastrians, Yorkists and Henry VII, 1399– 1509

  • Changing relationships between crown and the nobility: ‘overmighty subjects’
  • Changes in the sinews of power 

Rebellion and disorder under the Tudors, 1485–1603

  • Changes in governance at the centre
  • Gaining the cooperation of the localities

The Golden Age of Spain, 1474–1598

  • Changing geographical reach of Spanish power
  • Changing military and financial power

The witch craze in Britain, Europe and North America, c1580–c1750

  • Changing attitudes to witchcraft in Britain
  • The wider intellectual context: the coming of the age of science and reason

Industrialisation and social change in Britain, 1759–1928

  • Changing patterns of adult work and working conditions
  • The world of childhood

Poverty, public health and the state in Britain, c1780–1939

  • The impetus for public health reforms
  • Changes in public health

Britain: losing and gaining an empire, 1763–1914

  • The changing nature and extent of trade
  • The changing Royal Navy, 1763–191

The British experience of warfare, c1790–1918

  • Changes in organising the military
  • Changes in the role of the people

Typical A-level subject combinations with History

Sample enrichment activities

  • Houses of Parliament trip
  • Bletchley Park visit
  • History Film Club
  • Trinity Arts Awards
  • Current Affairs and News Club
  • Debating Society

Sample academic calendar (2023-2024 and 2024-2025)

Year 1


11th: term starts
Student induction


23 – 27th: half term
Progress tests


University fairs and talks


15th: term ends
End of term exams


8th: term starts


15th – 16th: half term
Progress tests
University fairs


End of term exams
22nd: term ends


8th: term starts


Progress tests


14th: term ends

Year 2


9th: term starts


21st Oct – 1st Nov: half term
15th October: UCAS deadline (Medicine)
Progress tests


University fairs and talks


13th: term ends
End of term exams


6th: term starts
15th January: UCAS deadline (other subjects)


13 – 14th: half term
Progress tests


21st: term ends
Mock exams


7th: term starts
Progress tests


Final exams


13th June: term ends

Recommended reading

Below is a list of books which may help you prepare for your studies prior to arrival. Please note that additional books, and online resources such as websites and journals will be shared once you begin your course.

  • Access to History: The Wars of the Roses and Henry VII: Britain 1450–1509 by Roger Turvey
  • Enquiring History: Tudor Rebellions 1485–1603 by Barbara Mervyn
  • Spain, 1474–1700 by Colin Pendrill
  • The Witchhunt in Early Modern Europe by Brian P Levack
  • The First Industrial Nation: the Economic History of England 1700–1914 by Peter Mathias
  • Edexcel GCE History AS Unit 2 B2 Poverty, Public Health and Growth of Government in Britain 1830–75 by Rosemary Rees
  • Empire by Niall Ferguson
  • Crimean War by John Sweetman

Degree progression

Many students who do History at A-level use their qualification to do a degree in History or a related subject.

A History related degree is useful for a number of careers, including teaching, librarianship, banking and commerce, the law, publishing, museums and art galleries and a wide variety of social work.

Example degree courses which require or accept History A-level include:

  • Archaeology
  • Architecture
  • Anthropology
  • Classics
  • History
  • History of Art
  • Law
  • Philosophy
  • Politics

Sample alumni progression

Nikita Stetsyuk

  • History/Economics/Maths
  • University of Manchester (Business)

Janice Chee Jing Wong

  • History/Economics/Maths/Further Maths
  • University of Manchester (Law)

Thank you for your enquiry.
We'll be in touch soon.
The Kings Admissions Team