Assessment Report

Level 1 History 2021

Standards 91003  91005  91006

 

Part A: Commentary

Candidates need to the read the questions carefully and ensure that their responses are addressing the question that is being asked of them.

The choice of historical event is key to achieving in 91005 and 91006. Candidates who chose well-defined and specific events achieved higher grades than candidates who wrote on a broad event or movement, e.g. focusing on the Gallipoli Campaign rather than World War I; or the Montgomery Bus Boycott rather than the Black Civil Rights movement. Some historical event choices, such as natural and man-made disasters, limited candidates’ ability to demonstrate comprehensiveness.

Part B: Report on standards

91003:  Interpret sources of an historical event of significance to New Zealanders

Examinations 

This examination included three questions, in which candidates were required to use the resource material to answer them. The context for 2021 was the 1932 Unemployment Riots, which related to the theme of protest and social unrest in the first half of the twentieth century. The questions required the candidates to use a range of historical skills to unpack the provided sources and answer the questions.

Observations 

Candidates who were able to paraphrase and synthesise information to support their ideas tended to achieve higher grades. Candidates who utilised more than one source to explain their ideas tended to be awarded higher grades. Candidates should be encouraged to write structured paragraphs for each question. Focusing on some big ideas, supported with specific evidence, tended to provide a more comprehensive response than writing on many smaller ideas. High-achieving candidates sometimes made connections to wider events/ideas/knowledge, e.g. candidates who had an understanding of Communism could make connections to wider ideas and were able to show insight. These candidates showed the benefit of a well-rounded History programme.

Grade awarding 

Candidates who were awarded Achievement commonly:

  • directly addressed the question
  • used limited evidence to support their ideas
  • did not always directly answer the question or used evidence that did not always correlate to the question.

Candidates whose work was assessed as Not Achieved commonly:

  • wrote a response to only one or two of the questions
  • provided a brief statement without supporting their ideas with evidence or used irrelevant evidence
  • quoted large parts of a source without making clear how it related to the question
  • wrote a response that was outside the scope of the question.

Candidates who were awarded Achievement with Merit commonly: 

  • used structure effectively to answer the question, using more than one source or one example to support their response.

Candidates who were awarded Achievement with Excellence commonly:

  • used a wide range of sources woven effectively through their response to directly answer the questions
  • used carefully considered evidence to support their big idea
  • showed discernment by ‘reading between the lines’ of sources.

 

91005:  Describe the causes and consequences of an historical event

Examinations 

The examination required the candidates to write on the causes of their chosen historical event, as identified in the 2021 Assessment Specifications. The candidates were expected to write a brief description of their event, then identify and describe more than one cause in a coherent essay answer.

Observations

Candidates should be encouraged to include a brief (two to four sentences) introduction that clearly defines the event and identifies the causes that will be described. These causes should be directly relevant to the chosen event.

Candidates are advised to keep the event paragraph brief and concise. Its main purpose is to give context to the causes, rather than show how much knowledge they have about it. The candidate's knowledge of the event will be shown in the way they link the causes to the event.

Using a good strong topic sentence to start each paragraph that specifies what the paragraph will be about (often including words from the question), helps the candidate to focus their paragraph, e.g. “An important cause of (event) was ...”. While essays are not marked on structure, Merit and Excellence essays usually have a strong structure that shows the candidate is clearly focused on the question.

Structuring the essay in a chronological manner also helps make the argument easier to follow.

Strong answers make connections between the cause identified/explained and the event itself; the more detail included, the stronger the grade. Candidates must aim to prove why it was a cause, rather than just state it was a cause. 

Grade awarding 

Candidates who were awarded Achievement commonly:

  • wrote a brief introduction that clearly identified the two clear causes that would be discussed in the essay
  • identified and described at least two causes and gave limited evidence that were commonly brief descriptions with little or no detail
  • chose, in some cases, a cause that was not directly related to their chosen event
  • chose an easily identifiable event
  • wrote with a limited structure.

Candidates whose work was assessed as Not Achieved commonly:

  • chose an unclear or inappropriate event
  • described only one cause
  • relied on narrative – telling the story of what happened before, during, and/or after the event, without discussing any of the causes
  • wrote about what the event caused (i.e. the consequences)
  • wrote a brief narrative of only a paragraph or two.

Candidates who were awarded Achievement with Merit commonly:

  • described two (or sometimes more) causes, with supporting evidence/examples to show an understanding of those causes directly relevant to the event, and by explaining how they were clearly and explicitly linked to the event and caused it to happen
  • used detailed and accurate supporting evidence, e.g. facts, dates, statistics to reinforce their point
  • wrote a well-structured essay, with clear paragraphs and strong starting sentences
  • chose a clearly defined event that lent itself to describable causes.

Candidates who were awarded Achievement with Excellence commonly:

  • wrote in a well-structured, clear, and comprehensive manner, including tying in dates, statistics, quotes, and names to back up their description, or citing more than one example to reinforce the point being made
  • chose an event with clearly established causes and did not spend too much time writing about the event itself
  • linked their causes clearly and explicitly to the event in a sophisticated manner, using relevant detailed evidence that illustrated a thorough understanding of the event.

 

91006: Describe how a significant historical event affected New Zealanders

Examinations 

The examination included three questions and candidates were expected to answer all three. The question covered the requirements of the 2021 assessment specifications. The questions required candidates to choose an event of significance to New Zealand.

Observations 

Candidates who wrote about a specific named person/group in Question Two were able to show a more in-depth understanding of actions and reasons, e.g.“Marx Jones” rather than “protestors”; or “Bob Walton” rather than “the Police”.

For Question Three, candidates should have made links to their event and society today, e.g.:

  • the Dawn Raids and the 2021 apology by the Government and PPP celebrating 50 years
  • the 1918 Flu Pandemic and the Government response to the 2020/2021 COVID-19 outbreaks, making the link between the 1920 health act and decisions made in 2020
  • Parihaka and the Government apology in 2019.

There should also be consistency between Question One, Question Two, and Question Three and the chosen historical event.

Grade awarding 

Candidates who were awarded Achievement commonly:

  • wrote a description of what happened during their chosen historical event
  • identified two different groups/individuals and could describe either an action or why they took that action for each group
  • wrote how the event was significant either at the time, or how it has continued to shape New Zealand society since
  • wrote a general, descriptive statement but evidence used to support their descriptions was limited or inaccurate.

Candidates whose work was assessed as Not Achieved commonly:

  • only attempted one or two of the questions
  • wrote about the lead up to the event for Question One rather than what happened during their event
  • identified only one group or individual
  • attempted to describe how the event was significant
  • used very limited evidence or none to support their descriptions often
  • chose a topic that was not suitable, e.g. an event from the Black Civil Rights movement, which is inappropriate for a standard that focuses on New Zealand history.

Candidates who were awarded Achievement with Merit commonly: 

  • wrote an in-depth description of what happened during their chosen historical event
  • identified two groups/individuals and could describe in depth specific named actions and/or reasons why they took the action
  • wrote an in-depth description of how the event shaped New Zealand at the time, or how it has continued to shape New Zealand
  • effectively used relevant and accurate evidence to support their responses throughout.

Candidates who were awarded Achievement with Excellence commonly:

  • wrote a comprehensive description of what happened during their chosen historical event
  • identified two different named individuals/groups and could comprehensively describe an action and why they took the action
  • wrote a comprehensive description of how the event shaped New Zealand at the time and could comprehensively describe how the event continued to shape New Zealand, giving specific examples which made strong connections to other historical or current events
  • consistently used well-considered and accurate evidence throughout their responses
  • wrote succinct and focused responses that directly addressed the question.

History subject page

Previous years' reports
2020 (PDF, 194KB)

2019 (PDF, 249KB)

2018 (PDF, 119KB)

2017 (PDF, 49KB)

2016 (PDF, 224KB)

 
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