- Imperial Russia, revolution and the establishment of the Soviet Union (1855–1924)
This section deals with modernization and conservatism in tsarist Russia and the eventual collapse of the tsarist autocracy, as well as the revolutions of 1917, the Civil War and the rule of Lenin. There is a focus on the concepts of change and continuity, with examination and consideration of the social, economic and political factors that brought about change.
- Alexander II (1855–1881): the extent of reform
- Policies of Alexander III (1881–1894) and Nicholas II (1894–1917): economic modernization, tsarist repression and the growth of opposition
- Causes of the 1905 Revolution (including social and economic conditions and the significance of the Russo-Japanese War); consequences of the 1905 Revolution (including Stolypin and the Dumas)
- The impact of the First World War and the final crisis of autocracy in February/March 1917
- 1917 Revolutions: February/March Revolution; provisional government and dual power (Soviets); October/November Revolution; Bolshevik Revolution; Lenin and Trotsky
- Lenin’s Russia/Soviet Union; consolidation of new Soviet state; Civil War; War Communism; New Economic Policy (NEP); terror and coercion; foreign relation.