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Government and Politics


In recent years we have seen referenda on the future of the United Kingdom and our nation’s membership of the European Union. Additionally we have seen unprecedented interest levels in current affairs with the ever-changing global political landscape. Political decisions shape our lives now and in the future and for that reason alone it is of vital importance that young people are aware of how our government operates and what it means to be a politically active and informed citizen. A Level Government and Politics is the ideal subject to increase your awareness of issues in the world around you. Government and politics complements a range of other subjects at A Level, for example geography, PRE, history, business, languages and sociology.

Summary of course content

The course follows the AQA specification and covers the government and politics of the United Kingdom and the USA as well as a look at political ideas such as socialism, liberalism, conservatism and fascism. It addresses key debates in recent years about the direction and future of Britain. The course looks at how politics works in the UK, the role of the Prime Minister and parliament, addresses issues of voting behaviour and why people vote the way they do. It looks as key issues such as immigration, democracy, elections and electoral systems and political ideologies.

Topics covered

Students will study three topics over two years. Topics currently covered are:
• Unit 1: Government and politics of the UK
• Unit 2: Government and politics of the USA and comparative politics
• Unit 3: Political ideas

Skills acquired

Government and politics helps to develop:
• Analytical skills (vital when listening to others, speaking or when reading text)
• Listening and speaking skills (vital when working as part of a team or in the management or supervision of others)
• Written skills (vital when trying to put across clear and relevant views)

Where the course leads

Students who have studied government and politics are welcomed into a whole range of jobs that require enquiring and disciplined minds, analytical skills, a commitment to self-improvement and knowledge of the world, for example journalism, business, law, education, defence, civil service and many more. Unsurprisingly, the government and politics course offers excellent preparation for students entering higher education here or abroad.

Special entry requirements

All students wanting to take A Level government and politics must also have a grade 6 or above in English Language/ Literature at GCSE. Students will have to be highly motivated and able to work hard to reach deadlines. They should demonstrate a genuine interest in government and politics. The ability to write extended answers is critical.