RTE Leaving Cert. History Higher Level:

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1 RTE Leaving Cert. History 2005 LEAVING CERT. HISTORY REVISION GUIDE Revision Topics: Higher Level: Start revising by concentrating at first on the main topics from each section of the course i.e. Section A: Section B: Section C: Section D: Home Rule / Unionism / Land Question Cumann na ngaedheal in power , Fianna Fáil in power , Interparty Governments Germany, France, Russia / The Eastern Question/ The Treaty of Versailles The Dictators: Stalin, Mussolini, Hitler Section E: Read over your Research topic every day. Practice writing it within 30 minutes. You must leave 10 minutes for the supplementary questions. If it s too long, it must be edited now! When studying a certain topic, familiarise yourself with past questions. Take for example the Home Rule movement : The following topics should be studied: The political careers of Isaac Butt, Charles Stewart Parnell and John Redmond. The political relations between Parnell and Gladstone. The decline of the Home rule Movement and the rise of Sinn Féin during the period A study on the land question in Ireland should address the following topics: The political career of Michael Davitt. The Land War

2 Land Purchase Revision Aids: Devise time charts on major topics and characters. These should be kept brief and could be written on debating cards. These study cards help avoid last minute panic. It is pointless to attempt last minute revision by searching through large textbooks or pages upon pages of notes. Here is an example of a time chart on the major landmarks in the political career of C.S Parnell: 1875: Parnell becomes a Home rule MP for Meath : Involved in campaign of obstruction in the British parliament. 1879: Becomes president of Irish National Land League. 1881: Jailed in Kilmainham. 1882: Released following the Kilmainham Treaty : Parnell reorganises the Home Rule Party 1885: The Hawarden Kite Gladstone indicates that he is moving towards Home Rule. 1886: First Home Rule Bill introduced. 1887: The Times publishes articles Parnellism and Crime. 1889: Pigott forgeries exposed. 1890: Divorce case split. Irish Party splits with majority opposed to Parnell. 1891: Death of Parnell, age 45. A 3 Step Approach To Leaving Cert. Higher Level Essay Type Questions. The following points should be remembered before you attempt to answer a Leaving Cert. History essay type question: Step I Remain within the date perimeters:

3 Take note of the dates included in the question title and try to remain within the time period that is specified. Only a small amount of marks will be awarded for information outside of the relevant dates. Step II Count the parts: Some leaving Cert. Questions may require an answer that must deal with more than one aspect of the subject e.g. Describe how Cumann na ngaedheal managed the Irish economy and Anglo-Irish relations during the period, Although you are not expected to divide you points equally between the economic and Anglo-Irish policies of the government, you must write at least one paragraph on each part of the question. You may then concentrate on the part of the question that you find easier to answer. However if you ignore a singly part of the question completely you will lose a substantial amount of marks. Step III Take note of Key Words: Underline the key words in the question e.g. Account for the rise of fascism in Italy, and discuss the achievements of the fascist state in that country up to circa You must ensure that all your points relate to the rise of fascism or to the achievements of the Italian fascist state up to Before you start a new paragraph ask yourself does the point that you are about to write relate to the key words. A good essay should include 6-10 relevant factual points. Let s look at an example from a past paper: Examine the successes and failures in the political career of Charles Stewart Parnell. Dates: Although there are no dates specifically written in this question, certain dates do apply. Your starting point is the year1875 when Parnell was elected as a Home Rule MP for Meath. Background information relating to his birth in Avondale, his time in university etc is irrelevant to this question. Parts: There are two parts to this question. You must include examples of both successes and failures. However there is no need to divide your points equally between both parts. Key words: Successes and failures are also the key words in this essay. You must refer to one or other of these key words at the start of every paragraph.

4 The main points relating to the key words for this essay could include the following: Elected as an MP in Parnell quickly rose to prominence due to his involvement in the Obstructionist Campaign. (success) He used the Land League to further the cause of Home Rule. (success) During the Great Lull he reorganised the Home Rule Party. MP s were paid and were required to take an oath promising that they would sit, act and vote as one unit. (success) Parnell used the balance of power in Westminster to great effect. He gained the Ashbourne Land Act from the Conservatives in 1885 and managed to convert Gladstone to the cause of Home Rule in Although the Home Rule Bill failed to pass the House of Commons, Parnell had managed to put the Irish Question at the top of the British political agenda for a brief period. (success) The power of the Home Rule Party forced the Conservatives to adopt a new policy towards Ireland. In an attempt to Kill Home Rule with Kindness the Conservatives introduced a series of land acts during the period (Success) In 1886 Parnell forced Captain O Shea on a reluctant Galway constituency against the wishes of senior party activists. The Galway Mutiny demonstrated that Parnell was willing to bend party rules to suit his own needs. (Failure) Parnell refused to get involved in any significant way in the Plan of Campaign 1886/87. He failed to see that the Land Question was still important. It shows that he was out of touch with events in Ireland. (Failure) In 1889 at a meeting at Hawarden, Gladstone reaffirmed his commitment to Home Rule to Parnell. (Success) Parnell mishandled the divorce case. His failure to contest the case allowed O Shea to make a fool out of him. Parnell s refusal to resign when he lost majority support caused a major split in the Home Rule Party. (Failure) Following the split in the party, Parnell s speeches became more extreme and he began to hint at the limits of constitutional politics. Davitt described this as being the crowning disgrace of Parnell s political career. (Failure) Points to Remember: Time limit: You have 40 minutes to finish each question. Don t over-run on time. Stop after 40 minutes, leave a blank space and move on to your next question.

5 Dates: Check the dates in the question and avoid writing long descriptive passages on material outside the relevant dates. Repeating Questions: Don t take it for granted that questions from last year s paper will not reappear. If you find that you are running out of time, try to write a number of short relevant sentences on each point. This will allow the examiner to give you marks for relevant information as well as an assessment mark for the treatment of the question. It is important that you revise your research study well in advance of the exam. Don t spend more than 30 minutes writing the account, as you will need the extra 10 minutes to tackle the supplementary questions. You should study past supplementary questions and practice answering them as most of the questions that have been asked in recent years have appeared previously. The most common supplementary question include the following: Questions based on an assessment of your sources: Leaving Certificate 2004, 2003, , 2000, 1999, 1998, 1997, 1996, 1995, 1993, 1992, 1991,1990,1989, 1988,and1987. Give two reasons why your topic merited a special study: Leaving Certificate 1999, 1997, 1996, 1995 and Questions based on how the research study introduced you to the skills of the historian: 2004, 2003, 1998, 1994, and ORDINARY LEVEL: On the Ordinary level paper you must learn to tackle 3 different types of question: 1. The "Answer Briefly" type (Section A and D): What is required here is a very short and to the point answer. One or two solid sentences will suffice. e.g. "Describe one important difference between the United Nations and the League of Nations " You could state how the League of Nations was set-up after the First World War, while the UN was established after the Second World War.

6 To prepare for this section you should buy a set of past papers and write out as many answers as possible from Sections A & D of the paper. You should revise these answers from time to time. 2. The "Short paragraph type (Section B and E): A mere six or seven facts are all that is required for the short paragraph. You only need to write one or two sentences on each fact. i.e. Question: "Write a short paragraph on Hitler and the Jews" Answer: You could mention why Hitler hated the Jews or list some of the Nuremberg Laws: Each law would count as one fact. You could also refer to some of the concentration camps that were set-up to kill the Jews. Popular past questions in section B and E include the following: Irish History: The 1913 Strike and Lockout: 2004, 2002, 2001, 1999, and The Blueshirts: 2004, 2001, 1998,1997. The First Inter-Party Government: 2004,2001, European History: Charles de Gaulle: 2004, 2001, The Treaty of Versailles: 2002, 2001, 2000, and The Spanish Civil War: 2003, 2001, and The "Write on" type (Section c and F): The write on type of question is the most important question on the Ordinary Level paper. These questions account for more than half of the total marks available. What is required here is a short essay or a much longer version of the "short paragraph" type question. 15 to 20 facts would be needed. Again one or two sentences per fact would be sufficient. You also get marks in this question for a good relevant opening and conclusion to your account.

7 Many of the questions in this section will ask you to write an account on a person or event under certain headings: i.e. Soviet Russia, under each of the following headings: (i) How Lenin ruled Russia, (ii) How Stalin ruled Russia, to (when Germany invaded the country) (iii) The part played by Soviet Russia in the defeat of Germany in World War II. (L. Cert. 2004) Although you must write something under each heading, you do not need to have the same amount of facts in each section. You may feel that you know more about part (ii) of the question rather than parts (i) & (iii). A few short facts on the other two sections of the question would be sufficient. Ordinary Level Students, Take Note! A new type of question has appeared on the ordinary level paper over the last two years in section C and F: Question C.6: Write on a topic in Irish History, , which is not listed in Sections B and C. Question F.6: Write on a topic in European History, , which is not listed in Sections E and F. This type of question basically gives you a chance to write an account on a topic, which has not appeared anywhere else on the paper. You should prepare for this question by choosing a topic from Irish and European history within the dates of the history course, which is unlikely to appear on the paper. Write a short account on your chosen area or person (about a page in length) and learn it well. These two questions account for 30% of the marks available for the entire Ordinary Level paper. Suitable topics for this question could include the following: An account of a particular incident during the War of Independence or Civil War e.g. The Kilmichael Ambush. A battle during the First or Second World War e.g. the Battle of the Somme or the Siege of Leningrad. The political career of a personality such as Countess Markievicz or Emmeline Pankhurst Watch the Time! Ordinary Level students often misjudge time and fail to complete the paper. This is especially true in relation to Section F of the paper, which is the last question. As this

8 Question carries 1 / 4 of the total marks, if omitted it will greatly reduce your grade. The table below should help: Section Recommended Time Marks A 20 minutes 40 B 20 minutes (10 minutes for each 40 short paragraph) C 50 minutes (25 minutes per 120 question) D 20 minutes 40 E 20 minutes (10 minutes for each 40 short paragraph) F 50 minutes (25 minutes per question) 120

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