Eduqas GCSE History: 2B. The Development of Germany, 1919-1991

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Eduqas GCSE History Component 2: Studies in Breadth

  • Written examinations: 2 hours (comprising two papers of 45 minutes for the Period Study and one hour fifteen minutes for the Thematic Study)
  • 50% of qualification 100 marks (plus 4 marks for spelling, punctuation and grammar and use of specialist terms)

Learners study one Period Study and one Thematic Study, from eight options in total. This component focuses study on substantial and coherent medium and long timescales. Studies in Breadth will provide learners with the opportunity to study history over longer timescales and consequently understand the changing nature of developments and issues associated with particular periods and geographical contexts.

Studies in Breadth will also allow learners to understand change and continuity and similarity and difference across long sweeps of history, as well as the most significant characteristics of different ages. Studies in Breadth will focus study on different historical eras and different geographical contexts.

This component encourages learners to develop an understanding of second order historical concepts in particular, including continuity, change, cause, consequence, significance and similarity and difference.

Learners are required to study one option from 2A-2D and one option from 2E-2H.

Due to content overlap candidates are not permitted to combine the following options: 1D and 2D; 1G and 2B; and 1H and 2A. See Appendix A from the Eduqas specification for a list of all permitted combinations of options.

Curriculum for 2B. The Development of Germany, 1919-1991

  • This option focuses in depth on the social, political and economic changes experienced by Germany from WWI through to the 1990s. Through the selected themes, students will be able to discuss the developments, events and personalities who shaped Germany in the 20th and 21st centuries.
  • Themes span major political, social, cultural and economic influences that affected the lives of Germans including the impact of WWI and the Treaty of Versailles on the collapse of the German economy; the period of prosperity and freedom brought by the democratic Weimar Republic; flaws in the Weimar government that saw a rise in social unrest and far-right, nationalistic sentiments; the emergence and rise of the Nazi party, including their consolidation of power; how Hitler rose to power and formed a dictatorship enforced by a police state; how the Nazi party controlled the population and indoctrinated the youth through education policies; the persecution of the Jews and Final Solution; the impact of WWII on Germany and life for its citizens; the geopolitical division of East and West Germany post-WWII and the mechanisms that saw recovery and prosperity for the West but poverty and entrenchment of Communism for the East; furthermore, how Berlin and Germany were key areas in the Cold War, along with the events that led to the rise and fall of the Berlin Wall; and finally, the events, policies and leadership that led to the reunification of Germany.
  • Candidates should be able to map and discuss the circumstances that led to Germany’s economic, political and social changes. Students should be able to critically analyse the policies implemented to stimulate the economy and promote jobs in both the Weimar Republic and post-WWII in West Germany.
  • Candidates will be required to compare and contrast the years of economic struggle in Germany during and after WWI and WWII in order to have a greater understanding of Hitler’s policies and the Allied solution to punishing Germany.
  • Candidates should be able to identify and discuss the conflicting ideologies of democracy and Communism in order to elaborate on the division of Berlin, the escalation of the Cold War and how Germany was impacted by the rivalry between the USSR and the U.S.
  • Candidates should understand the changing social landscape in terms of the freedoms experienced during the Weimar Republic followed by the control of the Nazi party, particularly on the role of women in society and education of the youth.
  • Students should be able to form well-reasoned judgements based on historical facts, while also including issues of the wider historical debate of how and why Germany changed in the way it did over the course of the 20th and 21st centuries.
  • They should also address the key issues in each topic area using a range of historical sources.
  • The required content in italics shows which key features and characteristics of the period must be studied.

Key Questions and required content

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