HI, I got good results this year with F964 French Rev (sorry...) All above target bar one who was on target - 8 As, 2 Bs & 2 Cs from a very average class - some of which were into the 90s for UMS. Our F961 grades were slightly lower but overall all students met or exceeded their MTGs. I found the markscheme to be really explicit on what was required and my students knew the markscheme inside out so were confident and knew exactly what to do - essentially it is hoop jumping.
Content - I agree with the previous poster who said to cut down on content. It is really not important in the markscheme - doesn't count at all for QA and is minimal for QB. We use sources every lesson
. Students learn basic content through sources and then build up detail in note taking homework. To get As students need to address typicality of the sources which is why it is so essential that they use sources every lesson. They need to know of a great range of sources and authors as the same ones do come up againa nd again. This is half the battle in the exam. My students panic when they see sources so using them every lesson really built confidence and by the end they were fine.
They need to know markschemes inside out. Get them to rewrite them in the own words (check they are correct!) and peer mark lots. Mine were in a situation by the end where they could have marked for OCR over the summer. Do all of the past papers you can find. If the old style document studenies don't fit for your topic make up some questions using whatever sources you have.
Structure is really really important. If students tackle sources sequentially (1 source discussed per paragraph) they can not get above a D. I have tutored students this year wo were told that they should do this and were being given A grades by their teachers when the essays were actually D grade standard. The markscheme is really clear on this. They need to be constantly comparing and contrasting sources throughout, treating them as a body of evidnce. No paragraph should ever refer to only 1 source.
I've attached by source analysis grids - differentiated for A/B and C/D students and essay structure planning grids. They still need some work so if you think of any improvements please le tme know!
Hope this helps and that you have improved grades in resits/next year.
Sadly - the new system means that my students don't actually know very much about the French rev but are brilliant at source analysis. Not really the way I think it should be but it seems to be the only way to get the grades.