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Edexcel History Source Paper Part C/q3


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#1 OnTheBallCity

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Posted 09 June 2012 - 12:35 PM

Hi all.

I have my Edexcel History GCSE Source Paper exam on Tuesday. I am relatively comfortable with this source exam, apart from Question 3 (or Part C), the comparison question. I don't understand how you structure it, and what you compare within the sources (do you compare the NOP, or the content), do you compare A with B, B with C and C with A, or just A, B, and C with the statement separately.

For example, I was attempting a past exam paper this morning and the question was, "How far do sources A, B and C agree about the work of women during the First World War", and I just didn't know where to start.

Any help would be greatly appreciated, because if I go into the exam on Tuesday with the knowledge I have now on that question I am going to fail it!

Thank you.

#2 MrJohnDClare

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Posted 09 June 2012 - 01:10 PM

It's hard isn't it - what makes it difficult is that there are three sources, not two!

Anyway, this is how I have advised pupils to do it, having studied the exam markscheme.

FIRST, compare the content (what they say).
The lowest level you could do this would be simply to summarise what they say, but try to draw out points of similarity and of difference. You can deal with them individually - A disagrees with B about X, but agrees with C about it - but C disagrees with A about Y etc.
If you are being clever, try to compare what the sources are inferring, as well as what they are saying on the surface.
Write your first paragraph, saying not only WHETHER the sources agree, but HOW FAR they agree.
Remember that the number of marks you get depends on how fully you EXPLAIN your ideas, and support them with facts from the sources.

Remember also to stay on topic - the questions will not just ask you to comment randomly on whether they agree, but whether they agree about an event or opinion (e.g. How far do the sources agree about the evacuation of Dunkirk). So restrict your comments to the topic they have given - don't wander off comparing what they say about Hitler.

SECOND, you must mention the provenance of the source (who wrote it, when and why).
It may be that they seem to be saying similar things, but they have deeply different underlying opinions etc.
Write your second paragraph, saying whether you need to adjust your conclusions in the light of your analysis of the sources’ provenances.
Remember as above to explain your ideas and to stay on topic.

Does this help?

#3 OnTheBallCity

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Posted 09 June 2012 - 02:01 PM

It's hard isn't it - what makes it difficult is that there are three sources, not two!

Anyway, this is how I have advised pupils to do it, having studied the exam markscheme.

FIRST, compare the content (what they say).
The lowest level you could do this would be simply to summarise what they say, but try to draw out points of similarity and of difference. You can deal with them individually - A disagrees with B about X, but agrees with C about it - but C disagrees with A about Y etc.
If you are being clever, try to compare what the sources are inferring, as well as what they are saying on the surface.
Write your first paragraph, saying not only WHETHER the sources agree, but HOW FAR they agree.
Remember that the number of marks you get depends on how fully you EXPLAIN your ideas, and support them with facts from the sources.

Remember also to stay on topic - the questions will not just ask you to comment randomly on whether they agree, but whether they agree about an event or opinion (e.g. How far do the sources agree about the evacuation of Dunkirk). So restrict your comments to the topic they have given - don't wander off comparing what they say about Hitler.

SECOND, you must mention the provenance of the source (who wrote it, when and why).
It may be that they seem to be saying similar things, but they have deeply different underlying opinions etc.
Write your second paragraph, saying whether you need to adjust your conclusions in the light of your analysis of the sourcesí provenances.
Remember as above to explain your ideas and to stay on topic.

Does this help?


Brilliant, thank you.

What our teacher suggested was:

1st Paragraph - Sources which support the statement. Compare the sources within this paragraph, how far they agree with each other, including their provenance.
2nd Paragraph - Sources which do not support the statement, why their disagree in comparison to the sources which do agree.
3rd Paragraph - Conclusion. How far each source agrees with the statement given in the question.

Would this be a good structure, if your points mentioned above were included in it, or could you suggest a better, or more simpler option r.e the structure of it?

Thanks again.

#4 MrJohnDClare

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Posted 09 June 2012 - 02:20 PM

Yes - that's fine - we ALWAYS on this forum stress that you must do what your own teacher tells you to do before you listen to us; your own teacher ALWAYS knows best.

So use the structure you teacher has taught you.

All i would suggest is that you remember as well:
1. to say not only WHETHER the sources agree, but HOW FAR they agree.
2. that the number of marks you get depends on how fully you EXPLAIN your ideas, and support them with facts from the sources.
3. to stay on topic
4. to mention the provenance of the source

#5 OnTheBallCity

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Posted 09 June 2012 - 02:26 PM

Yes - that's fine - we ALWAYS on this forum stress that you must do what your own teacher tells you to do before you listen to us; your own teacher ALWAYS knows best.

So use the structure you teacher has taught you.

All i would suggest is that you remember as well:
1. to say not only WHETHER the sources agree, but HOW FAR they agree.
2. that the number of marks you get depends on how fully you EXPLAIN your ideas, and support them with facts from the sources.
3. to stay on topic
4. to mention the provenance of the source



Thank you very much - final question, how much would you suggest we write for this question?

#6 MrJohnDClare

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Posted 09 June 2012 - 02:47 PM

Thank you very much - final question, how much would you suggest we write for this question?

15 minutes
Your timing will be one-and-a-half minutes per mark (this 'do-they-agree' question is worth 10 marks)

#7 OnTheBallCity

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Posted 09 June 2012 - 02:58 PM

Could you please give me some feedback on this answer - let me know where I am going wrong. I am very open to criticism, it will only help.

Q3. "How far do Sources A, B and C agree that the General Strike was a threat to Britain?"

Sources A and B strongly agree that the General Strike was a threat to Britain as they both portray an image that the strike is an attempt to overthrow government. You can see this within the sources because it reads "The General Strike is a direct challenge to ordered government" in Source A, and Source B suggests that Britain are going to have to hold their own, and fight against the strike action. On the other hand, Source C takes a completely different view point and suggests that the strike is not an attack on Britain, it's people or it's government, but it is simply a strike to enhance the workers' own welfare. This thought is supported in Source C with the evidence, "There is no challenge to the constitution....in order to protect the miners against serious lowering of their standard of life."

Analysing the provenance of the sources slightly effects how far the sources agree with the statement in the question. Source B is a cartoon likely to have been produced as part of government propaganda to get the British public on the side of government, so it is unlikely to tell the full story which could mean it agrees that the General Strike was a threat to Britain to a lesser extent. Similarly to Source B, Source A is an article from the British Gazette which could also bee seen as propaganda to get readers to help Britain by standing up for themselves against the strike action. Finally, Source C is an extract from the British Worker magazine, so it would have been one-sided towards the welfare of the workers wanting to take strike action. Therefore, they will want to portray an image that the stirke action is just for their own well-being and they do not want to harm Britain as whole. This means Source C disagrees with the statement to a lesser extent, as it cannot be fully trusted due to the one-sided nature of the source.

Overall, taking into account the provenance of the sources, Sources A and B show some agreement with the statement in the question, whereas Source C shows little.

Thank you! :D

#8 MrJohnDClare

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Posted 09 June 2012 - 05:02 PM

Could you please give me some feedback on this answer - let me know where I am going wrong. I am very open to criticism, it will only help.

Q3. "How far do Sources A, B and C agree that the General Strike was a threat to Britain?"

Sources A and B strongly agree that the General Strike was a threat to Britain as they both portray an image that the strike is an attempt to overthrow government. You can see this within the sources because it reads "The General Strike is a direct challenge to ordered government" in Source A, and Source B suggests that Britain are going to have to hold their own, and fight against the strike action. On the other hand, Source C takes a completely different view point and suggests that the strike is not an attack on Britain, it's people or it's government, but it is simply a strike to enhance the workers' own welfare. This thought is supported in Source C with the evidence, "There is no challenge to the constitution....in order to protect the miners against serious lowering of their standard of life."

Analysing the provenance of the sources slightly effects how far the sources agree with the statement in the question. Source B is a cartoon likely to have been produced as part of government propaganda to get the British public on the side of government, so it is unlikely to tell the full story which could mean it agrees that the General Strike was a threat to Britain to a lesser extent. Similarly to Source B, Source A is an article from the British Gazette which could also bee seen as propaganda to get readers to help Britain by standing up for themselves against the strike action. Finally, Source C is an extract from the British Worker magazine, so it would have been one-sided towards the welfare of the workers wanting to take strike action. Therefore, they will want to portray an image that the stirke action is just for their own well-being and they do not want to harm Britain as whole. This means Source C disagrees with the statement to a lesser extent, as it cannot be fully trusted due to the one-sided nature of the source.

Overall, taking into account the provenance of the sources, Sources A and B show some agreement with the statement in the question, whereas Source C shows little.

Thank you! :D

OK, a few points.
We don't normally mark or comment on students' essays - you will see that we would quickly be swamped with work - but in this case I am going to make an exception, because the exam is near, and I spot one significant weakness.

Overall, I thought it was a good attempt. Paragraph 1 was especially strong, with clear correct statements, supported by relevant quotes. You even say they 'strongly' agree, which is the 'how much' bit.

Also, in the second paragraph, you attempt to use the provenance, which is a plus. Also, I thought you evaluated the significance of the provenances well - the British Gazette WAS government propaganda, the British Worker WAS biased towards the strikers.

However, you come unstuck when you try to use the provenance to adjust your conclusions in the light of your analysis of the sources’ provenances:

which could mean it agrees that the General Strike was a threat to Britain to a lesser extent

this means Source C disagrees with the statement to a lesser extent

What do these sentences mean?
I get what you are trying to say - you are trying to say that, since the British Gazette was government propaganda, we historians can assume that it is going to have OVERstated the threat to Britain.
Similarly, since the British Worker is biased to the strikers, OF COURSE it's going to make out that the strike is no threat, so we historians might wonder whether the strike was a bit more of a threat than the British Worker was trying to make out.

However - if this is what you meant - it isn't what you wrote.
I think it is just a matter of getting the language correct. What you did was say whether it 'agreed with the statement' - perhaps if you had related the provenance more explicitly to the 'threat to Britain' it would not have been so confusing.

Is this OK?

#9 OnTheBallCity

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Posted 09 June 2012 - 05:11 PM

Thank you very much for your feedback.

Yeah, I knew you were going to pick up on that. I really didn't know how to say how the provenance had an effect on the agreement. Any ideas on what else I could possibly say to get across to the examiner that the provenance had an effect, e.g Propaganda makes it agree less?

#10 MrJohnDClare

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Posted 09 June 2012 - 09:14 PM

Any ideas on what else I could possibly say to get across to the examiner that the provenance had an effect, e.g Propaganda makes it agree less?

I think that the provenance makes a sourcemore or less valid.
So a STRONG source is a really good support for an argument/statement, but a WEAK source (especially a source where you think it will be lying/biased) hardly supports the argument/statement at all.
It's all part of that 'how far' the source supports the statement.




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