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  • 1. Unit 3: Triumph and Collapse: Russia and the USSR, 1941-1991
  • 2. The Content
    • The Great Patriotic War (USSR’s involvement in WWII) and its Outcomes, 1941-1953
      • Impact of German invasion
      • Stalin’s role in the war effort
      • Nature of Soviet wartime economy
      • Actions to encourage mass patriotism
      • Stalin’s dictatorship, 1945-1953
  • 3. The Content
    • Destalinisation, 1953-1968
      • Khrushchev's victory in the power struggle following Stalin’s death
      • Khrushchev's leadership and motives for reforms
      • The impact of Destalinisation
    • The Brezhnev Era, 1968-1982
      • Leadership of Brezhnev: era of conservatism
      • Economic stagnation and the arms race
  • 4. The Content
    • The End of the Soviet Union, 1982-1991
      • Leadership changes from 1982
      • The motives and impact of Gorbachev’s reforms, including glasnost and perestroika
      • Economic and political problems
      • August coup of 1991 and the end of the USSR
  • 5. The Examination
    • You will have an 1.30 hour examination.
    • You will answer 2 questions from a choice of 3.
    • Two of the questions are on a particular period of time e.g Assess Stalin’s leadership during the Great Patriotic War
    • One question will be on the whole period of time, 1941-1991. You will need to carefully select from across the full period to support the argument. It is important to emphasise the situation at the beginning and the end of the period, identifying key turning points e.g how far was the failure to achieve effective economic reform between 1941 and 1991 responsible for the break up of the USSR.
  • 6. Marking Criteria
    • TASK : read marking criteria on p. Vii and summarise each level in two lines. Leave a free line between each level in case you wish to add any detail when teacher goes through levels.
      • Level 1 (G)
      • Level 2 (E/F)
      • Level 3 (C/D)
      • Level 4 (A/B)
      • Level 5 (A)
  • 7. Marking Criteria
    • Level 1 (G) – limited understanding, only loosely linked to focus of the question. Little awareness of different historical interpretations.
    • Level 2 (E/F) – some understanding, mainly descriptive. Poorly structured and little historical debate.
    • Level 3 (C/D) – good understanding, but may lack depth. Links between ideas, but not developed. Some historical debate. Clearly expressed, reasonable structure.
    • Level 4 (A/B) – Very good understanding. Links between ideas and arguments. Good historical debate. Well organised: sustained argument.
    • Level 5 (A) – Full understanding of question. Wide ranging and carefully chosen arguments. Well-developed understanding of historical interpretation. Answers well structured and well written.
  • 8. The Rise of Stalin
    • Lenin died in 1924. Following a bitter power struggle, Stalin came out as victorious.
    • This was despite being less powerful than Trotsky and not favoured by Lenin. However, Stalin used his position as General Secretary of the Communist Party to promote his supporters.
  • 9. Stalin during the 1930’s
    • 1930’s were a traumatic time for the USSR. Millions of people were killed and locked up by Stalin in the name of Socialism.
    • Four main objectives for the Communists:
      • Achieving Socialism
      • Industrialisation
      • Strengthening Soviets Military capabilities
      • Mobilising Soviet population and ensuring loyalty to Stalin
  • 10. Five Year Plans
    • Five Year Plans were used to run the Soviet economy.
    • The State Planning Agency, Gosplan, decided what the regime’s priorities were. This was mainly heavy industry and defence. What consumers wanted hardly mattered.
    • Meeting the targets of these plans was more important than the quality of goods.
    • While these plans initially pulled the Soviet Union from a rural based economy into an industrial one. However, as the Soviets economy became more diverse in needs, the Plans proved less effective.
    • The mains problems of the Soviet economy were:
      • Its inflexibility (was not based on supply and demand)
      • Its lack of concern for quality
      • Its reliance on manual labour
      • Over-bureaucratisation
  • 11. Note - taking
    • Mere suggestions, as note-taking is a personalised skill.
    • Note the title of each section to give your notes structure.
    • Have a set of annotations.
    • Always take any key or subject-specific terms down.
    • Dates are crucial in giving yourself an idea of chronology, especially if the subject is new to you.
    • Note statistics and key examples.
    • Names of historians and politicians
    • Never copy down everything. One exception to this rule is quotes.
    • Abbreviate words as much as possible.
  • 12. www.sovietunion1941-1991.blogspot.com
    • This blog site is a means of keeping in contact during the week.
    • You can ask questions or clarify any particular issues after a lesson.
    • I’ll also upload any resources from lessons that I’ve used so you can keep up to date if you miss a lesson.