Advanced Higher History Past Paper Questions

Advanced Higher History Past Paper Questions

Advanced Higher History Past Paper Questions


“ The February Revolution came more from below than above.”

Discuss this view of the origins of the February revolution. (2003)

“February was not a workers’ revolution; it was a mutiny, a Russian workers’ riot, unchecked by weak government.” Is this an accurate assessment of the events surrounding the abdication of the Tsar? (2005)

Why were so few Russians prepared to defend Tsarism in February 1917? (2007)

“A revolution that no-one expected, planned or controlled.” How valid is this view of the February Revolution? (2008)

*Why was the Provisional Government unable to deal successfully with the problems it faced in 1917? (2002)

*How important were the contributions of Lenin and Trotsky in bringing about the October Revolution?(2004)

*To what extent can the decline of the Provisional Government be dated from the July days? (2006)

*“Peace, bread, land”. Is this an adequate explanation of the October Revolution? (2003)

To what extent was the collapse of Tsarist autocracy by February 1917 due to social

and economic, rather than military, factors?(2009)

To what extent was October a “proletarian revolution” rather than a “coup d’etat”? (2010)


To what extent was the ‘heroic vision’ of Bolshevism realised by the time of Lenin’s death in 1924? (2003)

To what extent was Bolshevik foreign policy between 1917-1924 faithful to the Ideology of international revolution? (2008)

Was the development of the Soviet state between 1917-1921 more a product of ideology or circumstance? (2005)

How successful were the national minorities in their struggle against the centralised Russian state between 1917 and 1925? (2005)

How far had the ideals of the October Revolution been betrayed by the time of the Tenth Party Congress in March 1921? (2006)

What were the most significant factors which led to the emergence of a one-party dictatorship between 1917 and 1921? (2007)

How successful was Lenin’s foreign policy 1917-1924? (2007)

How far were Bolshevik ideals sacrificed in the pursuit of power by 1921?(2009)


Was the Civil War one conflict or many? (2004)

“Red victory in the Civil War was a foregone conclusion.” How justified was this view? (2006)

Did the Bolsheviks triumph in the Russian Civil War mainly because their opponents were more disorganised? (2002)

How important was the issue of leadership in determining the outcome of the CivilWar, 1917–1921?(2009)

How far was the outcome of the Civil War determined by the actions of the Allies rather than the policies of the Bolsheviks? (2010)


To what extent did NEP solve the economic problems experienced during the period of War Communism? (2006)

What did NEP come to an end? (2003)

Account for the transition from War communism to the New Economic Policy? (2002)

How successful was NEP in tackling the economic and political problems facing the Bolsheviks in the 1920s? (2008)

Was the NEP anything more than a desperate response to desperate economic and political circumstances? (2010)


To what extent was Stalin’s rise to power due to his opponents’ weakness? (2005)

“Comrade Card Index”. Was Stalin’s control over the party machine the crucial factor in his rise to power? (2004)

“Stalin rose to power in the 1920s only because he was a skilled political manipulator.” Discuss.(2002)

How important were policy issues in Stalin’s rise to power? (2007)

To what extent was Trotsky responsible for his own downfall in the 1920s? (2008)

How valid is the view that Stain emerged as the leader of Russia mainly because he was able to present himself as the true heir of Lenin? (2010)



How far had a new Soviet society been created by the end of the 1930s? (2006)

“Death solves all problems. No Man, no problem.” (Stalin)

Does this adequately explain the Purges and Terror? (2004)

To what extent was Stalin’s Russia a totalitarian society? (2003)

Were the Purges and the Terror no more than a product of Stalin’s paranoia? (2008)


“We are 50-100 years behind the advanced countries…”

Does this adequately explain Stalin’s programme of rapid industrialisation in the 1930s? (2005)

To what extent were collectivisation and industrialisation introduced for practical rather than ideological reasons? (2004)

Did the benefits of rapid industrialisation in the Soviet Union outweigh the costs? (2002)

How successful were the Five Year Plans, 1928-1941? (2007)

How effective was the policy of collectivisation in achieving its aims? (2009)


Which factors best explain the victory of the Soviet Union in the Great Patriotic War? (2006)

How important was Stalin’s leadership to Soviet leadership to Soviet victory in the Great Patriotic War? (2004)

What factors best explain the Soviet Union’s recovery from its initial defeat by Nazi Germany in 1941 –42? (2008)

To what extent was the mobilisation of economic resources the key factor leading to Soviet victory in the Great Patriotic War?(2009)

What factors best explain why the Soviet Union’s wartime alliance with UK and the USA developed into the hostility of the Cold War after 1945? (2010)


Was the Cold War the logical outcome of tensions generated within the alliances of world War Two? (2005)

“The 1940s saw Russia emerge as a superpower.” Discuss (2003)

Assess the objectives of Soviet foreign policy in Europe from the end of the Second World War to the early 1950s. (2002)

What were the main issues, which influenced Soviet foreign policy in the post-war period 1945-1953? (2007)