Subject Intent: Why Politics?
A-Level Politics enables students to question the structures and systems that shape their lives on a daily basis. The intent of the course encourages students to think critically and form developed arguments grounded in their own knowledge and experience. Politics allows students to gain a deeper understanding of their own country not just as it is today but how it has been shaped by past events, as well as covering aspects of economics, sociology and philosophy. The course also has strong links to contemporary issues that young people preparing for life outside of the school environment should be aware of, such as human and civil rights, individual liberty and the importance of a society that values democracy and free expression. Students will also encounter viewpoints both from course content and their peers that do not align with their own, and will develop the skills to engage with arguments and individuals whose ideas differ from their own in a mature and professional way.
Why should I study this subject?
Politics is the study of the world around us and looks at how political decisions are made by prime ministers, presidents, MPs and judges and other political actors. We explore current political issues such as whether referendums have a positive impact on democracy, the policies of and divisions within British and American political parties, how general elections are won and lost, the core beliefs of political parties and the role that judges play in both the UK and the US. If you are interested in current affairs and what is going in the world and want to understand why things are the way they are, then Politics is the subject for you.
What will I study?
Component 1: UK Politics
• Democracy and political participation
• UK political parties
• Electoral systems
• Voting behaviour and the media
• Core political ideas: conservatism, liberalism and socialism
Component 2: UK Government
• The Constitution
• The prime minister and the cabinet
• Relations between the branches
• Non-core political ideas: anarchism
Component 3: Comparative Politics: the USA
• The Constitution
• The presidency
• The Supreme Court
What are the entry requirements?
“Politics is a really enjoyable subject, with good class discussions, allowing all students to widen their political knowledge in a fun classroom environment” Lucy Fletcher – Wakefield Girls School