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Lack Of Guidance For Students Of Cie Igcse


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#1 mom

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Posted 15 January 2009 - 01:08 PM

I have noticed a lot of websites that which offer guidance to students of OCR,AQA etc but not for the CIE Igcse syllabus. Why is this?
I would really appreciate some websites which had revision notes on the IGCSE syllabus. Mr. John Dclare....I just love your site.

#2 MrJohnDClare

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Posted 15 January 2009 - 04:02 PM

I would really appreciate some websites which had revision notes on the IGCSE syllabus. Mr. John Dclare....I just love your site.

Well that's really kind of you, 'mom'. :)


I have noticed a lot of websites that which offer guidance to students of OCR,AQA etc but not for the CIE Igcse syllabus. Why is this?

The problem is that I TEACH AQA GCSE History, but I've never taught IGCSE.
I must admit that I had cause to have a look at their syllabus the other day, and it does seem less then expansive, so I can appreciate your frustration.
Of course there is a lot of overlap - but the problem comes in knowing how relevant the materials are to the questions you will meet ... and what about where there is not any overlap?
There ARE teachers on the History teachers' forum who teach IGCSE. I will post a topic there to see if any of them can offer you any help.
Look back here in a few days to see if you've have any replies.

#3 Mr Courts

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Posted 16 January 2009 - 08:57 PM

There are some past papers to be found here, but you are correct, there is not much supports from Cambridge out there. You are right to find JD Clare's site helpful and in general, you can use any GCSE resources as long as you focus using the syllabus. Beyond that, I would need to know specifics in order to give you better advice. Do you do the coursework or the alternatives paper? What is your depth study? etc. What exactly are you looking for?

#4 mom

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Posted 17 January 2009 - 10:45 AM

There are some past papers to be found here, but you are correct, there is not much supports from Cambridge out there. You are right to find JD Clare's site helpful and in general, you can use any GCSE resources as long as you focus using the syllabus. Beyond that, I would need to know specifics in order to give you better advice. Do you do the coursework or the alternatives paper? What is your depth study? etc. What exactly are you looking for?

Thank you for your reply. The depth study is USA but the real problem is with the alternative to course work. The 2009 syllabus is focusing on the German involvement in the Spanish Civil War. There is very little available in terms of sources and the articles available are really quite difficult to understand.
As things stand now,I really cannot figure out whether to concentrate on the impact it had on Spain or whether it was an important part of Hitler's foreign policy.
How do you suggest I look on the event. There are no practice questions on it either because it is the first year this topic is being studied.
Please advise.

#5 mrallsop

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Posted 17 January 2009 - 07:35 PM

I began teaching the CIE course this year, having taught the OCR Modern World History course for the past four. The content is very similar to the OCR course, and so sites aimed towards that may be a useful starting point.

I'm currently in the process of updating my own history revision website with information to help students of CIE history. However, as Mr Courts says, different schools offer different specifications and therefore you need to know exactly what material/periods you are looking for.

To provide a very quick overview, the core content (20th Century) covers the WW1 Peace Treaties, League of Nations in the 1920s and 30s, the Road to WW2 (appeasement, etc.), and then the Cold War - from 1945 to the collapse of Communism. The depth studies are much more varied - I teach the German Depth Study and the German "Alternative to Coursework" options (Paper 4). History revision podcasts relevant to these topics - apart from the Cold War, which I'm working on at the moment - are available on my website.

Another excellent site for guidance on CIE IGCSE History is http://www.igcse-history.net/ (part of Russel Tarr's Active History website) as it has guidance and worked examples of past papers at http://www.activehis...se/revision.htm

#6 mom

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Posted 19 January 2009 - 06:22 AM

I began teaching the CIE course this year, having taught the OCR Modern World History course for the past four. The content is very similar to the OCR course, and so sites aimed towards that may be a useful starting point.

I'm currently in the process of updating my own history revision website with information to help students of CIE history. However, as Mr Courts says, different schools offer different specifications and therefore you need to know exactly what material/periods you are looking for.

To provide a very quick overview, the core content (20th Century) covers the WW1 Peace Treaties, League of Nations in the 1920s and 30s, the Road to WW2 (appeasement, etc.), and then the Cold War - from 1945 to the collapse of Communism. The depth studies are much more varied - I teach the German Depth Study and the German "Alternative to Coursework" options (Paper 4). History revision podcasts relevant to these topics - apart from the Cold War, which I'm working on at the moment - are available on my website.

Another excellent site for guidance on CIE IGCSE History is http://www.igcse-history.net/ (part of Russel Tarr's Active History website) as it has guidance and worked examples of past papers at http://www.activehis...se/revision.htm

Mr Allsop....Thank you for your reply. I am aware of your website.....the 'we didn't start the fire' podcast is awesome!
I hope your site will be updated soon. In the meantime, Mr Tarr's site is too expensive for me to sign up as our currency does not stack up too well!
Could you suggest some practice questions on 'German involvement in the Spanish civil war'?
Also our teacher in school does not seem to stress enough on provenance...for e.g ..How important is it know something about a cartoonist's background,political views etc? Do you think I should research some of this myself?
Thank you

#7 Mr Courts

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Posted 19 January 2009 - 09:39 AM

The focus of the Alternatives paper is on the reasons for foreign involvement in the Spanish Civil War. to be perfectly honest, beyond a decent background knowledge of this, your focus should be on the use of sources. We use past papers from other topics to prepare this. Yes, you need to know the main players and the main reasons for and effects of foreign involvement, but it is the source skills that are key. There is an excellent section on Russell Tarr's site on foreign involvement, but I think you need a membership to view it, I'm not sure.

#8 mrallsop

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Posted 19 January 2009 - 09:54 AM

the real problem is with the alternative to course work. The 2009 syllabus is focusing on the German involvement in the Spanish Civil War.


The German involvement in the Spanish Civil War is this year's Paper 2 (sourcework) topic, and so all CIE students will be studying this. Again, I can direct you to Russel Tarr's site, where he has clearly put a lot of time and thought into developing a series of lessons on this topic. I would imagine that the impact of Guernica would be a particular area to focus on. Last year's Paper 2 was appeasement, and so there si the possibility that the main focus won't be on the broader international impact of Germany's involvement in the Spanish Civil War, but as you say this topic has never come up before and so nobody can really be sure. Again, I think Russel's areas of focus are an excellent guide.

Bear in mind that this is a sourcework paper and so many marks are awarded for the application of good source skills, rather than a reliance on in-depth knowledge of the specific topic as in the other papers. There's good guidance on general source skills on JohnDClare's website, and I recorded a podcast covering these at www.mrallsophistory.com This is not to say that a good knowledge of events is not important (all questions encourage students to "use your own knowledge"), but that the source skills themselves are also important and should be a focus as well as teh details of the events.

Edited by mrallsop, 21 January 2009 - 04:03 PM.


#9 space

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Posted 21 January 2009 - 08:42 AM

Hey mom,

Take a look at this website: http://pastpapers4fr...---history.html
It includes past year papers and even the mark schemes.

You are right, even the IGCSE History textbook isn't very good. You should purchase the GCSE textbook for you kid instead.
Here is how it looks: http://www.amazon.co...s/dp/0719577136

I borrowed the book from my ex-History teacher before sitting for the IGCSE History exam last year.

#10 Sarah D

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Posted 22 January 2009 - 12:27 AM

Hi im siiting the IGCSE history exam this may. Im doing 20th century international and german relations for my depth study. I found from my tutor that the paper on the german involvement on the spanish civil war is on sources. I havent got onto that bit yet but when i do i will post some stuff up on it in about a months time i think.

#11 mom

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Posted 22 January 2009 - 07:37 AM

Hey Space
Thanks for the link to the past papers!
Any ideas on where to look for sources on German involvement in Spanish Civil War? I really need practice on sources...?

Mr Allsop, Thank you for your reply. Why does the Spanish civil war not figure as an event of importance when we study Hitler's foreign policy? Didn't the war further seal the alliance bwn Italy and Germany and also show Stalin that Britain and France were not serious about stopping Hitler?

#12 mom

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Posted 14 February 2009 - 08:46 AM

Hey Space
Thanks for the link to the past papers!
Any ideas on where to look for sources on German involvement in Spanish Civil War? I really need practice on sources...?



I have finally subscribed to the active history website....it is very helpful for source work specially on the Spanish Civil War topic.
Mr Allsop's site also has some new podcasts...both on sourcework and Cold war.

Please could someone advise how important it is to know a bit about the famous cartoonists of the time. Will that help to achieve bonus marks on a question about the provenance? If so......who are the cartoonists we should gather some info on?

#13 Guest_starteasycareer_*

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Posted 17 February 2009 - 10:35 AM

This is the qualification for IGCSE...

As one of the world’s leading providers of international assessments, CIE offers a broad range of qualifications and programmes, created with an international audience in mind. CIE qualifications range from general qualifications, usually taken through schools and colleges, to vocational qualifications and professional development for teachers.



#14 MrJohnDClare

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Posted 17 February 2009 - 06:38 PM

Please could someone advise how important it is to know a bit about the famous cartoonists of the time. Will that help to achieve bonus marks on a question about the provenance? If so......who are the cartoonists we should gather some info on?

You do not need to worry too much.
They will always ut a bit in for you about the provenance/cartoonist in the exam - and that will be all you need to know to get a good mark.

I you DID want to go a bit deeper, I would stick to the major names -- Illingworth, Low, Gilbert, Cummings, Strube, Vicky.
I suspect it is mpossible to know about non-British cartoonists - perhaps find out about Kukryniksy.

btw, have you come across the British Cartoon Database?

#15 mom

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Posted 22 February 2009 - 11:06 AM

Mr Dclare.....A big thank you!




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