Reasons to study this course

  • History is well-respected by universities and employers because of the analytical skills you develop.
  • It opens doors to a wide range of careers including law, journalism and teaching.
  • Two course options: Early Modern History and Modern History.

What you will need to study this course

  • interest, curiosity and a genuine desire to study the past
  • willingness to work independently
  • good literacy skills with a good pass in English Language GCSE

What you will study

Modern History (F): USA 1917-1996 presidents, civil rights, and society. Establishment and fall of Apartheid in South Africa. Impact of war in Britain from the Napoleonic conflicts to the First World War.


Early Modern History (C): 17th century in Britain including the turbulent reign of Charles I as well as the English Civil War. French Revolution. The European witch-craze 1580-1750.

How you will be assessed

Year 1 (AS) – two exams.

Year 2 (A-Level) – three exams and a 4,000-word essay.

Priestley Extra

Visits to France and Belgium or Washington D.C. and New York. Day trips to the Imperial War Museum and Pendle Hill. Join the college History Society and help produce our termly magazine. A range of history masterclasses across the year.

You can also contribute to Making History – the college’s history magazine – which you can see previous editions of here > Making History


Degrees in Law, Ancient History and Archaeology, teaching, politics, American studies, Philosophy. Diverse range of careers including banks, law firms, local and national government.

Recommended reading

Core textbook for route C (17th century Britain and the French Revolution): Oliver Bullock, Alan White, Daniel Nuttall, Revolutions in early modern and modern Europe.

Core textbook for route F (20th century USA and South Africa): Jane Shuter, Rosemary Rees et al, Searching for rights and freedoms in the 20th century.

For route C: John Morrill, Stuart Britain: A Very Short Introduction.

For route C: William Doyle, The French Revolution: A Very Short Introduction.

For route F: Paul Boyer, American History: A Very Short Introduction.

For route F: Fatima Meer, Higher Than Hope: A Biography of Nelson Mandela.

The Historical Association website allows student membership and has a range of excellent online resources for A level students (www.history.org.uk – cost £28)

Choosing Your Study Programme

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