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A2 History, unit 3 Scheme of Work

Unit 3, Depth Studies and Associated Historical Controversies

A World Divided: Superpower Relations, 1944-90

Lesson content

Lesson outcomes

Suggested learning

Homework/ extension

Resources / E Learning

Explain the course content,

assessment and exam criteria.
Through texts, sources and
images, produce a spider
diagram highlighting the
characteristics of Cold War.
Complete an evidence table
highlighting the differences
between capitalism and
communism. Individually
students research a key event of
the Cold War and produce a
presentation/factoid explaining
the event to the class.
List reasons for growing
tensions between USSR and
West. Conduct a card sort to
identify the major reasons.

Hold a balloon debate on

what was the key
event/turning point of the
Cold War.
Essay plan: To what extent
had relations between the
superpowers broken down by
the end of 1944?
Research essay: How far do
you agree with the view that
the origins of the Cold War in
1945 and 1946 owed much to
ideological differences and
little to personalities and
conflicting national interests?

Supporting resources are in

the A2 Resources section of
www.studyhistory.co.uk and
in the weblinks section. A
course guide can be
downloaded from the site as
Texts used to support this
course include, Steve
Phillips, Edexcel GCE
History A World Divided:
Superpower Relations 194490, Steve Phillips, The Cold
War, David Williamson,
Europe and the Cold War,
Oliver Edwards, The USA
and the Cold War, 1945-63

Lesson series focus: the seeds of conflict


Outline of USAUSSR relations

America and
Russia at war

How did Cold

War develop
between 1944
and 1953?

Students are able to

identify the
characteristics of Cold
War and understand the
causes of the
breakdown of the
Grand Alliance
Explore the differences
in ideology between
capitalism and

Provide an overview of
the stages in the
development of Cold
War in Europe
Key words: Truman
Doctrine, Marshall Plan,
Iron Curtain,

Use cartoons to assess relations

between East and West as they
stood at the end of the Cold
War. List reasons why the WWII
legacy was likely to increase
tensions. Complete an evidence
chart on the attitudes of the
members of the Grand Alliance
in 1945. Take notes on the 6 key

Skills work deconstructing

questions, Key words,
Instructions, Topic - KIT
In groups make a case for
one event being a turning

Phillips (Edexcel), p.15-32

Williamson, p.16-29;
Edwards, p.1-36

diplomacy at
Yalta and
Potsdam and
the end of
the war in

Understand the key

aims and achievements
of Tehran, Yalta and
Potsdam conferences

Stalinisation of
Eastern Europe

Understand the process

and motives for Soviet
expansion in Eastern
Europe after 1945
Keywords: coalition
governments, Iron
Curtain, coup dtat

How did the

West respond to

To assess the response

of the USA and Western
nations to Soviet
Keywords: Iron Curtain,
containment, Truman

stages in the development of

Cold War in Europe:
conferences of Yalta and
Potsdam, Russian influences in
Eastern Europe, Churchills Iron
Curtain Speech, Truman
Doctrine and Marshall Plans,
Czech Crisis (1948), Berlin
Complete an evidence chart
highlighting the different aims
and achievements of the Tehran,
Yalta and Potsdam conferences.
Use video footage from CNN
Cold War series and BBC
WWII Behind Closed Doors.
Compare the personalities of
Churchill, Roosevelt & Stalin
and assess how the changes of
leadership (Atlee and Truman)
helped increase or decrease
Annotate a map of Europe
showing the dates and briefly
the processes by which Eastern
European countries adopted
Communism. Using source
material and texts, e.g. timeline
of Soviet expansion establish a
list of reasons from the USSRs
and the Wests perspective as to
why Soviet expansionism
Study Churchills Iron Curtain
speech and assess the motives
and responses it provoked. Use
picture sources of war torn
Europe to examine reasons why
the US instigated the Truman
doctrine. Take notes on Truman

Write a short report stating

the hopes and aims of their
government for Europe in
1945 of the USSR, USA,
Britain. Highlight in green
similarities and in red clear

Phillips (Edexcel), p.23-4

Write a Soviet response to

Churchills Iron Curtain

Phillips (Edexcel), p.33-4;

Wliiamson, p.55-65

Conduct some research into

the efficacy of US and Soviet
aid packages. Did they
achieve any material benefits
or were they purely politically
Skills work: use sources in
Phillips (Edexcel) to assess
the motives for Truman
Doctrine and the evidence the
doctrine along with Marshall
Aid may have contributed
significantly to development

You Tube Churchills Iron

Curtain speech

Doctrine and Marshall

Plan, Cominform,

Doctrine, Marshall Plan and the

Soviet responses Cominform
and Comecon.

of Cold War

The division of
Germany and
the Berlin

Understand the location

of events of the
Blockade, the causes
and responses by West
and USSR

Skills work: Berlin Blockade,

use sources in Phillips to
summarise interpretations of
causes of Blockade and
identify areas of agreement
and disagreement

Why did Cold

War extend to
the Far East in

To examine the reasons

for the expansion of
Cold War to the Far
East, as a result of
Chinese Revolution, the
Korean War, Vietnam

Annotate a map of Germany,

showing the location of Berlin in
East Germany. List the causes
of the Blockade from research.
Take notes on the results of the
Blockade. Discuss reasons why
USA did not feel threatened by
fear of German revival and why
USSR did by contrast.
Identify reasons for success of
communism in China.
Study the events of the Korean
War using maps to annotate the
advances and withdrawals of
both sides. Complete an
evidence table assessing the
role of different groups in the
expansion of Cold War in the
Far East: communist groups,
nationalists in the Far East, the
defeat of Japan, decline of
European imperialism
Use contemporary cartoons to
demonstrate different
interpretations of the cause of
Cold War. Research and itemise
reasons why the US can
arguably be blamed for causing
Cold War tensions.
Create a spider diagram
identifying reasons for Soviet
expansionism, e.g. Stalins
personality, permanent
revolution, traditional Russian
expansionism, defensive
actions. Write a judgement
paragraph on which was the

Key words: Red Scare,

McCarthyism, domino
theory. Bipolar,

Why did Cold

War emerge?

To assess US
responsibility for the
origins of Cold War. To
identify reasons for
Soviet expansionism.
To familiarise students
with the range of
opinions on the origins
of Cold War
Keywords: traditional or
orthodox historiography,
revisionist, postrevisionist

Phillips (Edexcel), p.34-5

Conduct a case study into the

NSC-68 and using the
questions in Phillips
(Edexcel), p.39-40 to
structure the enquiry
Research task: examine the
role of Molotov and Bevin in
the events of the early Cold

Skills work: study differing

interpretations of US
responsibility for Cold War,
and practice ways of
supporting and challenging
interpretations using own
Exam practice, How far do
you agree with the view that
Stalins foreign policy was a
major contributing factor to
the emergence of Cold War in
the period 1945-50?

Phillips (Edexcel) p.47-71

most important factor.

Complete an evidence table on
different schools of
historiographical debate, e.g.
revisionists, post-revisionist etc.

Lesson series focus: the impact of the Thaw


How and for

what reasons
did the policy of
peaceful coexistence

The emergence of
Khrushchev and deStalinisation

What was the

impact of
policy of

Soviet motives for, and

moves towards,
peaceful coexistence
including cuts in the
Red Army and
withdrawal from Austria
and Finland

What do the

Internal threats to the

Soviet system: East

Key words:
structuralism and
Peaceful Coexistence

Key words:
brinkmanship, New
Look, Flexible
Approach, the Thaw,

Use photographs of Berlin to

explain the nature and dangers
of rising tensions between East
and West
Study events and commentary
following Stalins death and
assess whether they support
structuralist or intentionalist
perspectives. Create a spider
diagram identifying reasons for
the rise of the policy of Peaceful

Class debate, To what extent

was the policy of Peaceful
Coexistence a reflection of
changing personalities in the
Soviet leadership

Phillips (Edexcel), p.72-9;

Wliiamson, p.73-87

Study and take notes on the

Austrian State Treaty (1955) and
Soviet withdrawal from Finland
(1956). Highlight evidence that
shows a new response to
international relations. Itemise
the features of Eisenhowers
approach to foreign policy.
Highlight evidence of change
from NSC-68 and Trumans
foreign policy. Contrast
Eisenhowers aims with those of
Kennedy, identifying similarities
and differences between the
Flexible Approach and the New
Look. Identify possible
achievements of the Thaw and
rank as part of a card sort.
Study the events and
consequences of both the

Research the personality

and attitudes of Dulles
towards US foreign policy

Phillips (Edexcel), p.80-87;

Williamson, p.93-105

Skills work source

investigation into the
achievements of the Thaw
(Phillips (Edexcel), p.87)

Exam practice: To what

extent was the development

Phillips (Edexcel), p.88-95

Rising and the
Berlin Crisis tell
us about the
nature of the

Germany, Poland
and Hungary.

Hungarian Rising and the Berlin


of the post-Stalin thaw in

superpower relations
between 1953 and 1962 the
result of Khrushchevs policy
of Peaceful Coexistence?
Skills work: identifying
factors, ranking them and
making links

Lesson series focus: the nuclear arms race


Why and how

did an arms race
between 1949
and 1963?

Students understand
developments in
nuclear and military
technologies and the
impact they had on the
balance of power
between the

Why did the

Cuban Missile
Crisis occur?

Causes, events and

consequences of the
Cuban Missile Crisis.
Key words: hot line,
Nuclear Test Ban
Treaty, Dtente

Look at examples of public

information films and brochures
detailing what to do in a nuclear
attack. Create a spider diagram
identifying causes of the arms
race. Create a timeline detailing
technological advances in the
arms race and which
superpower led the race at that
time. Identify the impact of the
arms race on the nature of Cold
War conflict between 1949 and
Use maps to identify reasons
why the US felt threatened by
developments in Cuba. Study
events leading up to the crisis,
e.g. U2, Vienna Conference with
Khrushchev, Berlin, Bay of Pigs
and assess the impact they had
on Kennedys actions during the
Cuban Missile Crisis. Complete
an evidence chart for Kennedy
and Khrushchev assessing
whether Cuba represented a
domestic or international political
problem. List the consequences
of Cuba

Class debate: Did the arms

race heighten or reduce the
possibility of war?

Watch one the DVDs

mentioned in the resources
section and write a brief
assessment(or film review) of
its usefulness in
understanding Cold War
Exam practice: To what
extent did the nuclear arms
race make the world a more
dangerous place in the years

DVD, !3 Days, Dr

Lesson series focus: Sino-Soviet and US relations


How and why

did relations
between the
USSR and
China change in
the period 194976?

Introduction to
personality and ideas of
Mao and events of
Chinese Revolution.
Examination of the
nature of the
relationship between
China and USSR
Key words: Sino-Soviet,
Great Leap Forward

What impact did

the Sino-Soviet
split have on
relationship with
the USA
between 1970
and 1976?

Investigation into the

reasons for and
consequences of the
breakdown of SinoSoviet relations and
rapprochement with
Key words: Ping Pong

Identify the role played by China

in advancing Communism in the
post-war era, e.g. Sino-Soviet
Treaty (1950), Korean War,
Taiwan Straits crises. Source
work explore how the Taiwan
crisis was used to strengthen
Chinas position. Identify
reasons for breakdown in
relations between China and
USSR, using sources in Phllips
(Edexcel), p.126-7.
Identify reasons for
rapprochement between China
and USA. Complete an evidence
chart recording the
achievements of rapprochement
for China and USA. Brainstorm
students for the implications of
the rapprochement for USSoviet relations. Use sources,
e.g. Maos own accounts to see
if students ideas are confirmed.

Case study: Ussuri River

Dispute use this dispute to
examine the nature of SinoSoviet relations in this period

Research task: research the

campaigns initiated by Mao
(Great Leap Forward &
Cultural Revolution) and
assess their impact on
international relations

Phillips (Edexcel), p.130-135

DVD Forrest Gump

Class debate: Who benefited

most from the Sino-Soviet
Essay: How far was the SinoSoviet Split of the late 1960s
the result of ideological
differences between the two
communist powers?

Lesson series focus: Dtente


What were the

causes of

Identifying the causes

of improving relations
between the Soviet
Union and the West
Key words: realpolitik,

Show students images or

footage of the Apollo-Soyuz linkup and discuss the significance
of the event in terms of EastWest relations
Create a spider diagram

Skills work use sources in

Phillips (Edexcel), p.142 to
identify the contribution made
by Kissinger in the realpolitik
of the period

Phillipis (Edexcel), p.137-44


What was
achieved by the
SALT treaties

To assess the
successes and
limitations of
international treaties,
such as SALT and

Why did Dtente Identify the causes of

come to an end? the ending of Dtente

identifying the causes of

improving relations between
East and West.
Study the careers of Nixon and
Kissinger and identify significant
contributions they made to the
Research the economic
problems facing the world in the
1970s and assess the
contribution they made to the
pursuit of Dtente
Use cartoons or graphs showing
nuclear arms build up to explain
the cost and futility of the arms
race by the 1970s
Create a scales chart assessing
the successes and limitations of
SALT treaties. Make an overall
judgement on the evidence
beneath. Note down the features
of the Helsinki Agreement and
use sources to assess the
achievements of the Agreement
in the view of commentators
Case study into the rise of neoconservatism in the USA and its
impact on foreign policy. Create
a spider diagram assessing
reasons why Dtente came to
an end. Encourage student to
make links between different
factors and to categorise them in
order of importance

Pair work task adopt the

role of two differing US policy
advisors, and write separate
reports on the advantages of
continuing or dropping the
policy of dtente. Exchange
copies of each report and
write up a final decision as
the President.

Phillips (Edexcel), p.144-50;

Williamson, p.112-128

Research task investigate

the reasons for the Soviet
invasion of Afghanistan and
the impact this had on

Phillips (Edexcel), p.154-55

DVD, The Kite Runner

Exam practice: How

advantageous was the policy
of Dtente to the
management of the USAs
Cold War diplomacy with the
USSR in the 1970s?

Lesson series focus: end of Cold War


How did Reagan

Assess the role of

Case study: Reagan, study his

Research find out about the

Phillips (Edexcel), p.157-

help begin about

an end to Cold

Reagan in bringing
about the end of Cold
Key words: militarisedcounter revolution, SDI

What factors
weakened the
hold of the
Soviet Union
over Eastern
Europe in the
early 1980s?

To understand the
processes which led to
the collapse of Soviet
Unions control over
Eastern European

What were the

of the ending of
the Brezhnev

Study the way in which

communist rule
collapsed in Eastern

How did the

Soviet Union
come to an end?

Study the events and

personalities which
brought an end to the
Soviet Union

Key words: New

Political Thinking,
gerontocracy, glasnost
& perestroika, Ostpolitik

Key words: Velvet


career and policy aims and

assess their impact on USSoviet relations. Source skills
activity in Phillips (Edexcel),
Annotate a map of Eastern
Europe detailing causes of
tensions in each country.
Create a spider diagram
identifying major factors in the
breakdown of Soviet control.
Make a judgement on what was
the major cause of the
Identify reasons why the Soviet
leadership struggled to maintain
Show students TV footage of
collapse of Berlin Wall and
discuss what prompted and
what would result from this
Complete an evidence table
charting the processes and
consequences of collapse of
Soviet authority in a selected
number of Eastern European
states. Identify similarities in the
Create a timeline of events
showing collapse of Eastern
European communist
governments and ending of
Identify factors which led to end
of Soviet Union, e.g.
personalities, failure of political
reform, economic decline etc.

Strategic Defence Initiative

(SDI) and why the USSR
viewed it as such a threat.
Compare alternative
perspectives on SDI using
sources such as those in
Phillips (Edexcel), p.162-3
Case study Poland &
Solidarity movement. What
doe this reveal about the
challenges facing Communist
governments and Soviet
foreign policy?
Conduct a SWOT analysis of
the Soviet Unions foreign
policy in the late 1980s

163; Williamson, p.135-139

Source investigation was

the collapse of the Berlin Wall
a cause or consequence of
the end of Cold War?

Phillips (Edexcel), p.171-6

Case study Gorbachev.

Research the political career
of Gorbachev. Compare his
perception in the West and in
USSR. Conduct source skills
task into his role in ending
Cold War in Phillips
(Edexcel), p.177-8

Phillips (Edexcel), p.176-8

Essay: How far do you

Why did the

Cold War come
to an end in the

Understand the
problems facing
historians in assessing
the cause of the end of
Cold War. Evaluate the
role of key individuals,
esp. Pope John Paul II,
Ronald Reagan,
Margaret Thatcher,
Mikhail Gorbachev

Use cartoons from the era to

open discussion on the two
schools of thought structuralist
and intentionalist regarding the
ending of Cold War
Identify problems facing
historians of the Cold War. Study
information on Pope John Paul
II, Ronald Reagan, Margaret
Thatcher, Mikhail Gorbachev
and present a case for each one
having played the key role in
ending Cold War. Rank their
contribution in order of
importance. Complete an
evidence chart recording
information to support the views
of different historiographical
schools on the ending of Cold

agree with the view that the

Cold War came to an end
because popular protest in
the Communist Bloc during
the 1980s weakened the
Soviet hold over Eastern
Debate: who or what was
responsible for the ending of
Cold War?
Source activity use the
sources and structured
questions in Phillips
(Edexcel), p.188-190
Exam practice use the
sources and question in
Phillips (Edexcel), p.191-2 to
conduct timed exam practice.

Phillips (Edexcel), p.188-192