National 5 History Assignment Resource Sheet For Parents

Course Outline

National 5 Biology covers the following areas:

  • Cell Biology
  • Multicellular organisms
  • Life on Earth

Information from the SQA on the course can be found here.

Revision resources

  • You can find an excellent electronic version of a textbook here.
  • The BBC website has an area for National 5 Biology here. This has revision notes and quizes on it.
  • This website has PowerPoints, quizes and worksheets for Units 1 and 2.
  • There is a specimen paper on the SQA website.
  • The SQA has also published some specimen papers for purchase.
  • You can find some great revision notes and questions by searching on google for Hyndland National 5 Biology.

Below you can find learning outcomes for all units.


Pupils should have started their assignment for National 5 Biology. Below you will find a document with the breakdown of marks, which will help you with your assignment and a document with instructions for candidates.

Countdown sheets

Countdown sheets are being given out in preparation for the exam. If you lose your copy, you can find them attached below.

The evidence for this candidate has achieved the following marks for each element of this course assessment component.

A. Placing the issue in its historical context (3 marks)

The candidate was awarded 3 marks because they provide at least two points of background to the issue and provide several relevant factors for development and a line of argument.

As background to the issue ‘To what extent was working class discontent the most important reason for the 1905 Revolution?’, the candidate provides background information that Tsar Nicholas succeeded his father Nicholas III in 1894, that he was known as the ‘Little Father’ to his people and that despite autocracy coming under pressure, Nicholas opposed change.

The candidate identifies the factors to be developed in the body of the assignment, namely military defeat in the war against Japan, Bloody Sunday, discontent among the peasantry, working class discontent and political discontent with Russia’s government. These are listed. Good practice would have been for each factor to be developed in a sentence.

The candidate then connects the factors to their line of argument: ‘This essay will argue that although short term factors like the Russo-Japanese war and Bloody Sunday were important in speeding up the revolution, it was long term factors like working class discontent which were the most important.’

Unusually the candidate does not discuss the isolated factor, working class discontent, in their first paragraph but later in the body of the assignment.


B. Analysing different factors contributing to an event or development (7 marks)

The candidate was awarded 7 marks because they make straightforward comments which analyse aspects within individual factors and also develop analytical comments throughout the main body of their assignment.

One example of a basic analytical comment from paragraph 1 (on effects of Russia’s defeat in the war with Japan) is:

‘…this (the Potemkin Mutiny) can be seen as important because those who were formerly loyal to the Tsar started to challenge his rule and turn against him’  

A maximum of 4 marks can be awarded for such straightforward comments which explain the importance of their knowledge points.   

In addition, the candidate makes a number of developed analytical comments which offer contradictions and balance. One example of this approach to analysis, also from paragraph 1, again relating to the Potemkin Mutiny is:

‘On the other hand the majority of the workers and sailors remained loyal …’

The candidate also makes developed analytical comments by establishing links between factors. One example of this approach to analysis from paragraph 2 (Bloody Sunday) is:

‘This (the petition) is important because it was based on workers wanting better conditions so without working class discontent the march would never have occurred suggesting…that Bloody Sunday was only a spark that ignited the war.’

Here the candidate highlights the relationship between longer term working class discontent and Bloody Sunday.


C. Evaluating factors to develop a line of argument (5 marks)

The candidate was awarded 1 mark because a judgement is made on the overall importance of working class discontent as a factor. The candidate supports their evaluative comment by discussing the relative importance of peasant discontent with the importance of working class discontent.

No evaluation marks were awarded for the factors discussed in paragraphs 1, 2, 3 and 5 as no explanation/criteria was given to justify/support their judgements/decisions.


D. Using information from sources referred to, in order to support factors (4 marks)

The candidate was awarded 3 marks because there are three sources referred to, which are used in support of their factors.

For example, in paragraph 2, the candidate quotes Marc Ferro (Last of the Tsars) ‘Bloody Sunday snapped the sacred bond that had united the Tsar with his people’ to support their point that the killing of innocent protesters was one of the final straws for the people of Russia.

The candidate clearly references three out of their four sources within the main body of the assignment. Credit was not awarded for the quotation in paragraph 2 as ‘editors’ of Encyclopaedia Britannica was not specific enough for authorship.


E. Using knowledge to support factors (8 marks)

The candidate was awarded 8 marks because there are eight relevant, accurate and developed points of knowledge that clearly link to the question throughout the body of the assignment.

An example of a credited knowledge point which is relevant and developed from paragraph 2  (Bloody Sunday) is:

‘It [the peaceful protest ] was led by Orthodox priest Father Gapon who was appalled at the living conditions of the poor and he decided that a peaceful protest would be a good way to make a direct appeal to the Tsar himself at the Winter Palace.’


F. Coming to a conclusion about the question or issue (3 marks)

The candidate was awarded 3 marks because they make a relative overall judgement between the different factors in relation to the issue.

As shown below, this candidate’s conclusion includes a ranking of the reasons/factors which caused the 1905 revolution:

‘On one hand short term factors like the Russo Japanese war and Bloody Sunday were important because…On the other hand long term factors like working class discontent and peasant discontent were arguably more important…Overall I believe that working class discontent was the most important factor behind the 1905 Revolution because… ‘

The candidate provides judgements on which reasons they think were most important in causing the 1905 revolution and this is supported by explanations based on the evidence presented in the body of their assignment.

Overall - The candidate was awarded 25/30marks for the assignment.




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