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A Level History Conference: Tudor England, 1485-1603

Course Code:


The conference focuses on the demands of breadth and particularly on issues of change, continuity, cause and consequence in the Tudor period 1485 – 1693 in both essay and interpretative material. There is a focus on the key political, social and economic questions that are most commonly asked on Tudor England from the accession of Henry VII through to the death of Elizabeth I, an era of decisive change for the English state and church.

The day is aimed to be of benefit for students studying any of the major examination boards, although examples will be drawn from the AQA board.


  • Experience a unique, enriching and highly informative day hearing presentations from leading historians and an expert senior examiner on The Tudors
  • The focus of the day is on developments and changes over circa twenty year periods
  • Gain invaluable practical guidance on how to answer questions on historical interpretations
  • Enhance understanding of key themes and topics, all linked directly to the exam papers
  • Take away top level guidance and advice from a senior examiner on ways to attain those top grades
  • Get the latest, up-to-date information from historians to strengthen exam responses.
  • Take away a full set of conference notes, with examination tips and example answers


Welcome and Introduction

10.25 – 10.35am

How effectively did the Henry VII restore and develop the powers of the monarchy?

10.35 – 11.05am
  • How far did Henry VII successfully establish and maintain royal authority?
  • To what extent was Henry VII’s foreign policy determined by his need for foreign recognition?
  • How far was there more continuity than change in society in the years 1485 to 1509?

In what ways and how effectively was England governed under Henry VIII?

11.05 – 11.40am
  • To what extent was the Reformation Parliament a turning point in Henry’s royal government?
  • How far did Henry’s financial and economic policy achieve its objectives?
  • To what extent were Henry’s relations with Scotland and other foreign powers determined by factors outside of his control

Break – submit your questions on Tudor History to our expert panel

11.40 – 12.00pm
  • To what extent was the Reformation Parliament a turning point in Henry’s royal government?
  • How far did Henry’s financial and economic policy achieve its objectives?
  • To what extent were Henry’s relations with Scotland and other foreign powers determined by factors outside of his control

Examiner Workshop: Achieving Well in Ques 01, Interpretation.

12.00 – 12.30pm
  • What is meant by ‘convincing’
  • Exactly what are the examiners looking for in the structure of a Level 4 and Level 5 response
  • ACTIVITY: Assessing the perfect start to Question 01 using exemplar scripts
  • What exactly is meant by balance and how to use it to prove understanding and not just knowledge?

The English Church 1509 to 1547

12.30 – 1.00pm
  • To what extent was there more continuity than change in the church in England?
  • To what extent was there an English Reformation?
  • How far did any religious change affect wider society and culture under Henry VIII?
  • How far is it accurate to suggest that the Dissolution of the Monasteries was due simply to Henry VIII’s desperate need for money?
  • How far did the Dissolution result in genuine social change?


1.00 – 1.45pm

Ask the Experts – the experts answer the best questions submitted by the students – the best question wins a prize!

1.45 – 1.55pm

The Mid Tudor Crisis?

1.55 – 2.30pm
  • To what extent had Elizabeth resolved the religious crisis of Edward and Mary by the 1570s?
  • How far was any political crisis of the years 1540 to 1558 due to unforeseen events?
  • To what extent was succession the greatest crisis of all in the years 1533 to 1558?

The Elizabethan Golden Age

2.30 – 3.00pm
  • How far was the key reason for economic growth under Elizabeth a result of trade and exploration?
  • To what extent was society transformed in the years 1558 to 1603?
  • How far was poverty the result of population growth and how effectively did Elizabeth deal with the Poor?
  • How effectively did Elizabeth deal with the threat from Spain?

Writing the Perfect Essay

3.05 – 3.30pm
  • The difference between knowledge and understanding and how this determines your level in the mark scheme
  • The importance of the perfect, brief introduction
  • What was done well in the 2022 exams with examples
  • How to master balance in a breadth essay


The Rock Tower, 49 Tufnell Park Rd, London, N7 0PS | Wednesday 01 February 2023

Please select your preferred date

This conference, tailored to suit, can be delivered in your school. Discuss this further with our CPD team on 01625 532974 or click below to make an enquiry.


Dr Alexandra Gajda is Fellow and Tutor at Jesus College, Oxford, and Associate Professor of History at Oxford University. She is an expert in the political, religious and intellectual history of early modern England. She is currently writing a book on Parliament and the Reformation under the Tudors.

Dr Keith Milne has over 25 years teaching and examining experience. He is a Senior Moderator and examiner with a major exam board and has authored and advised on a series of popular books including those detailing how to succeed with the NEA. He leads a number of courses exploring the routes to success at A Level History.

Dr Joanne Paul is a is a writer, historian and broadcaster working on the history of the Renaissance, Tudor and Early Modern Periods. She is Honorary Senior Lecturer at the University of Sussex and a BBC/AHRC New Generation Thinker. She has published with the Cambridge University Press ‘Ideas in Context’ series, and has been widely praised for her work on Thomas More, William Shakespeare, Machiavelli and Thomas Hobbes.


  • A Specially prepared notes, practical advice and guidance by the course leader
  • Expert produced PowerPoint presentations
  • CPD Certificate of attendance

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