Revision for Superpower Relations, 1945-1972

Specimen questions

John D Clare

For key points and mnemonics see John D. Clare’s brilliant pages on the Causes of the Cold War and then on the Development of the Cold War.


MNEMONICS Paper 1 C8 A World Divided

Revision Quizzes and games

  • Try John D. Clare’s self-tests on the Origins of the Cold War and on the Development of the War
  • FlipQuiz for the origins of the Cold War can be found here
  • Quizlet on the origins of the cold war
  • See excellent revision diagrams and quizzes on School History for this topic
  • For a quick summary of the differences between Yalta and Potsdam, see this excellent mindmap revision tool created by John D. Clare
  • Try the excellent School history online course if you have time. You may need to create an account to gain access but it is free and worthwhile.
  • I strongly recommend that you create your own physical flashcards using index cards and quiz yourself or get others to quiz you, using them. Pack them with information on a particular topic and write questions on the other side. (High Impact)
    • Increase the challenge by mixing up your topic cards from other sections of the course. Make sure that you neglect none of the questions, and focus most of your effort on those that you know least well. (High Impact)
    • Make 4 piles – 1. very difficult, 2. difficult, 3. OK 4. Easy. Spend your time revising from piles 1-4 in a ratio of 8:4:2:1 (i.e. You should be spending roughly 50% of your time on the very difficult pile; 30% on the difficult, 15% on the ‘OK’ and 5% on the easy pile. As you get better at the cards, change their positions so that you eventually end up with a pile that is easy. (Very High Impact)

Revision notes

John D. Clare’s Cold War Hand out.

Cold War Revision Checklist

Cold War 1943-1972 Revision Booklet arranged according to themes and topics


A very detailed but useful Detailed Timeline 1945-1964 can be found here

More basic outline timelines can be found here:

Create your own timeline using the following:

Cold War Timetable Blank – to view on screen and an editable word version can be found here

Useful Podcasts

Radio 4 recently produced an excellent series known as the ‘Big Freeze’, which contains at least seven episodes which are directly relevant to the course, on such topics as the H-Bomb, the Berlin Blockade, the Berlin Wall, the Hungarian Uprising, the Cuban Missile Crisis, Khrushchev’s Thaw, and even the Greek Civil War that led to the British asking the Americans to step in to help (and prompted the Truman Doctrine), are worth listening to. They contain valuable judgements about the causes and consequences of the events and are great for getting a sense of why they mattered to the people at the time. They only last 15 minutes each too!

Useful videos

Quick video for overview

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