Government & Politics
Lively, relevant and controversial... There are many ways to describe A Level Politics. It encourages students to develop knowledge and an informed understanding of contemporary political structures and issues in the UK and globally. It focuses on fostering a critical awareness of the changing nature of politics and the relationships between political ideas, institutions and processes. Studying Politics will develop a student’s skills so they can create informed opinions about the influences and interests that have impacted on political decisions, and the rights and responsibilities of individuals and groups.
The College expects students to have
A genuine interest in current affairs with English Language/History and Grade 5 or above in English Literature.
The skills of enquiry, research, analysis and evaluation developed in Government and Politics are widely valued in a range of professions including the diplomatic service, local government, education, journalism and politics. These skills can be transferred to other careers including business and teaching.
Year 1: Government and Politics of the UK
The focus of the first year of study is to develop an understanding of the UK political system with a detailed examination, analysis and evaluation of the nature and sources of the British Constitution, the structure and role of Parliament, the Prime Minister and Cabinet, the Judiciary and devolution. In addition to the government of the UK, students will explore the concept of democracy and how individuals can become involved in politics. For example, through elections and referendums, becoming a member of a political party or joining a pressure group. Students will also explore what the parties stand for and how different types of pressure groups can influence government to introduce or change policies and laws.
Year 2: Government and Politics of the US and Comparative Politics
During the second year of study students will compare American Government and Politics with the UK through different theoretical approaches. In order to do this, students will first gain in-depth understanding of the constitutional framework of US government, the legislative branch of government: Congress, the executive branch of government: the President, the judicial branch of government, the electoral process and direct democracy, political parties, pressure groups and civil rights. Political Ideas
In addition to US Government and Politics, students will also study political ideas. By the end of the course they will be able to explain, analyse and evaluate the three core political ideologies of Liberalism, Conservatism and Socialism alongside an option of one further ideology from one of the following: Nationalism, Feminism, Anarchism, Multiculturalism and Ecologism.