Why study politics?

All members of society should have a better understanding of the general rules under which they live. Politics enables you to participate actively in making and shaping society’s rules, upholding them and changing them. Politics stands out as an academic subject through its emphasis on debate, discussion and argument, all designed to enable you to make clear and valid assertions about our society.

What will I learn about?

UK politics
Students will study the area of political participation and understand how and why people interact with politics. This unit covers democracy; political parties and what they stand for; the different types of electoral systems used in the UK and the relationship between voting behaviour and media. You follow up this unit with an exploration of the three main political ideologies (conservatism, liberalism and socialism).

UK government
This unit focuses on the main institutions of the central UK government. Its core themes are the distribution of policy-making power and the effectiveness of the key bodies in carrying out their roles or functions. You will also cover the UK constitution, the power and structure of parliament, the role of the prime minister and the role of the judiciary. The final part of this section will see students exploring a key-non core political idea such as anarchism or nationalism.

Comparative politics – USA
You will study the representative process in the United States including elections and voting, political parties, pressure groups, together with a study of racial and ethnic politics.

Covering the constitution of the USA, the three branches of the federal government – congress, presidency and the Supreme Court – and how they have been held in check. You will then look at how this system compares to the UK political system.

How will I be assessed?

• Examinations

Future pathways and careers

• Politics
• International relations
• Political science
• Journalism
• Broadcasting
• Government
• Research
• Voluntary sector

Course level

A Level and AS

Entry requirements

GCSE at grade 5 in history. For students who have not studied history, you will need a grade 5 in English.

Examination board

Edexcel

Specification

9PL0