Government and Politics

A Level

We follow the EDEXCEL A-level Politics. This syllabus contains UK Politics, ideologies and US Politics and consists of THREE exams at the end of Year 13.

Component 1: UK Politics  = Taught by Ms Hern.

Content overview

  1. Political Participation, students will study: • democracy and participation, political parties, electoral systems, voting behaviour and the media.
  2. Core Political Ideas, students will study: • Conservatism, Liberalism, Socialism.

Written examination: 2 hours 33⅓% of the qualification

 

Component 2: UK Government  = Taught by Mr Lewis

Content overview

  1. UK Government, students will study: the constitution, parliament, Prime Minister and executive, relationships between the branches.
  2. Non-core political ideas, students will study: feminism,

Written examination: 2 hours 33⅓% of the qualification

 

Component 3:  USA Politics = Taught by Mr Lewis/ Ms Hern

Content overview

The US Constitution and federalism, US Congress, US presidency, US Supreme Court and civil rights, democracy and participation, comparative theories.

Written examination: 2 hours 33⅓% of the qualification

 

After much discussion between the Politics department and selected sixth formers we chose this syllabus for numerous reasons. The UK section of the syllabus was fairly standard on all exam options, but what we liked on the EDEXCEL course was the way it was split between UK Government and UK Politics. In our syllabus the topic of government which includes the Constitution, Parliament, Judiciary and the Executive is separate to that of Political Parties, The Media, Electoral Systems and Devolution. This allows the course to be split between the specialisms of each teacher but more importantly gives students an excellent overview of UK Government and Politics without going into minute detail on some of the more ‘dry’ topics such as the Constitution. When asked students responded that the old syllabus contained too much of this detail and did not give them an understanding of the wider world enough.

Hence the US Politics option was very appealing as this not only enable students to understand the wider world but it meant there was a direct comparison element between US and UK Politics. Students feedback was that a US option would be their favoured topic rather than the Global Perspectives paper as the US was more relatable and more students were interested in learning more about the US system and President than looking at the theories behind the global paper. As teachers we agreed that the global paper was too heavily thematic and did not relate well enough to modern politics and to the unique place the US has within it. Since adoption of the course we have seen many more students apply to Russell Group Universities to study American Studies and International Relations which we feel is a consequence of this option.

Working alongside this uptake in American Studies and International Relations is our SUSTAINED focus on applying to Russell Group Universities, with 60% of all Politics Students applying to those type of Universities. In the Politics classrooms we have AIM HIGH posters that advertise where students have gone onto study as well as the bottom 20 Universities (out of 131 ) which we encourage them to avoid as a first choice as they do not provide the academic rigour we would hope a grammar school Sixth Form to aspire to.

Loading