A-level Ancient History

OCR A-Level
Ancient History involves exploring past civilisations and events that occurred before the Middle Ages. The term "Middle Ages" is commonly used to refer to the time period in Europe from the collapse of the Roman Empire in 476 CE up until the beginning of the Renaissance in the 14th century.
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A-Level Ancient History online course

Studying A-level Ancient History can be fascinating for a multitude of reasons. It allows us to understand how civilisations from the past developed, including the growth of social and cultural systems, the spread of religion, trade and the formation of political structures.

At Oxbridge, our online A-level Ancient History course is delivered by an expert team and designed to help you learn in the way that best suits you and that will set you up for success with your future aspirations.

Studying Ancient History allows us to understand the relevance of the past to the present, as it enables us to explore the root causes of modern-day geopolitical and societal issues, as well as current global challenges. Therefore A-level Ancient History can be incredibly engaging because of the abundance of stories, mythologies and characters that populate it. Altogether learning about the triumphs and tragedies of ancient figures such as Julius Caesar, Cleopatra, or Alexander the Great can be informative and entertaining.

What Ancient History Offers

A-level Ancient History opens up a world of opportunity for learners eager to expand their knowledge of the ancient world and goes hand in hand with our A-level History course. By taking the course, students will explore a wide range of topics, including the military, political, religious, social and cultural history of the ancient world.

In-depth knowledge of selected periods of ancient history will give learners the tools to formulate solid arguments and substantiated judgments. Additionally, students will understand Greek and Roman history in the context of neighbouring civilisations and establish critical connections between individuals, issues, identities and societies of the past.


By engaging with scarce historical evidence, students will develop an understanding of the historical periods studied and analytical methods applied to evaluate evidence. The course will also enhance learners’ perception of historical debates and enable them to compare different periods in context within ancient history.

What you will learn

  1. Unit 1 - Relations between Greek states and between Greek and non-Greek states (492 BC- 404 BC)

    • The challenge of the Persian Empire
    • The consequences of the Persian Wars
    • The Archidamian War
    • The outbreak of war
    • The Peloponnesian and Delian Leagues
    • The Battle of Marathon
    • The Battle of Thermopylae
    • The Battle of Plataea
    • The Battle of Mycale
    • The invasions of Attica
    • Athenian and Spartan strategies
    • The Peace of Nicias
    • Relations with Persia in the final years of the War
    • Persia’s impact on the course of the War
  2. Unit 2 - The Politics & Society of Sparta 478 BC - 404 BC

    • Education & values in Sparta
    • The social structure of Sparta
    • The political structure of Sparta
    • Spartan military culture
    • Other States’ views of Sparta
  3. Unit 3 - The Julio-Claudian Emperors 31BC - AD68

    • Augustus
    • Tiberius
    • Gaius
    • Claudius
    • Nero
  4. Unit 4 - The Breakdown of the Late Republic - 88BC - 31BC

    • What is The Late Republic?
    • The Late Republic’s breakdown
  5. Unit 5 - Preparing for the Exams

    • Exam breakdown
    • Greek period study
    • Roman period study

Awarding Body


OCR is a leading UK awarding body. Providing qualifications that engage people of all ages and abilities. The general and vocational qualifications equip learners with the knowledge and skills they need for their future, helping them achieve their full potential. OCR provide GCSE courses and A-Level courses in over 40 subjects.

This course carries UCAS points. This means that it can be used to gain direct access to University courses and other Higher Education, through the UCAS system.

Course Outcome

Upon successfully completing this home learning course, you will receive the qualification: A-level Ancient History, issued by OCR. Your certificate is identical to that issued to students at any other school, college or university.

This syllabus (H407) has been chosen by Oxbridge because it is best suited to distance learning.

How is this course assessed or examined?

You’ll be required to complete two standard A-level Ancient History written exams:

  • Paper 1: 2 hours 30 minutes, 50% of A-level, 98 marks
  • Paper 2: 2 hours 30 minutes, 50% of A-level, 98 marks

These exams contain a mixture of short and long answer questions and extended response questions

Entry requirements

A GCSE or equivalent in History is recommended for this course. This Ancient History A-level syllabus is a difficulty level three: the equivalent difficulty of an A-level or BTEC, which is usually suitable for most learners of all ages.

Past Papers

You can access past papers for this course. They are free to access and cover a range of exam boards.

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