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This unit comprises a study in depth of the momentous years in Germany between the end of the First World War and the end of the Second World War. These events had a devastating effect on 20th-century Europe and throughout the modern world.

We focus on providing an in-depth understanding of revolutionary change in Germany in 1918–19, the emergence of a functioning democracy and its transformation into a repressive tyranny, which was to threaten the peace of the world and cause misery to millions.

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This unit comprises a study in breadth in which students will learn about the key political, social and economic features of Communist rule in Russia during the 20th century, an era that saw its authority and influence rise to the status of a superpower, only to diminish and decline later in the century.


The focus of study is on developments and changes over a broad timescale, and so the content is presented as themes spanning a significant duration: 1917–91. The themes include Communist government, industry and agriculture, control of the people and social developments. 

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This unit explores the British experience of war through five key topics, each a different major overseas conflict in which governments attempted to create effective fighting machines and ensure the cooperation and support of the British.


Certain key themes run through the key topics including the political leadership and the mobilisation of support, the military leadership and the conduct of battle, the problems and importance of financing war, the changing technology of war and its impact and the public attitudes and opposition to war and its impact.

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This unit contains a study in depth of historical interpretations on a broad question, namely the reasons for the outbreak and development of the Cold War in the years 1943–53. This is contextualised by, and overlaps with, a study of superpower relations (USA, USSR and China) in the years 1953–90.


The two main themes are confrontation and the threat of war on the one hand, and Détente and the resolution of conflict on the other.

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