Further Help For The Revision Road- (5) Mrs Helen Skilton (Head of History)

Examinations History

In response to our call for thoughts on effective revision earlier this year, Mrs Helen Skilton (Head of History) offered the following advice for Historians:


  • Gather all the past papers that you can from the exam board website and/ or your teachers.
  • Note down the main topics for each paper.
  • Under the topic headings, write down all the relevant exam questions.
  • Read through the questions: what are the key themes or key questions that seem to repeat themselves for each topic?
  • Organise your revision notes around these key questions. For example: For 'Weimar Germany', the key questions are: a) What problems did Germany have between 1919-1923? b) How far did Germany recover between 1923 and 1929? c) Why did the Weimar Republic collapse in 1933? If you can answer these key questions, you are well on your way to answering all the likely questions that will be set for this period, providing that your revision notes are reasonably detailed.


  • Chronology is important: make timelines of key events.
  • Organise notes into: Causes- Events- Consequences.
  • Read whole chapters of textbooks to gain the overview and remind yourself of the shape of events before you start making revision notes.
  • Make essay plans for questions on the same topic- see how you need to manipulate information to address differently worded questions.

General advice:

  • Practise past questions and have them marked.
  • Ask parents/ friends to test you.
  • Make the revision active: create eye-catching revision notes.
  • Learn the notes!
  • The GCSE Bitesize website is great.
  • YouTube has lots of little revision clips. However, check who posted the video and go for ones from teachers or that are marked ‘education’.

We will post information from Mrs Maria O'Neill  (Head of Spanish) tomorrow, and then finally thoughts from former pupils who have made it through the revision stage successfully!

You may also be interested in...