St John Plessington Catholic College

About the Course:

This subject is offered as an A Level course and will examine Citizenship from a social science perspective. It will provide many opportunities for students to develop their understanding of moral, ethical and social issues. Students will be encouraged to reflect on their own experience of the social world in which they live and to develop their understanding and skills which will enhance their ability to participate more effectively as active citizens in their own local and global communities. Contemporary issues will be explored from political and moral perspectives. The nature of Citizenship is at the heart of modern debates about the kind of society we are striving to build and the role of individuals and the state in that process.


There will be two written examination papers in each year (one lasting 1hour 15 minutes and three 1 hour 30 minutes). Each paper contributes 25% of the overall A Level marks.


Unit 1: Identity, Rights and Responsibilities

  • What does it mean to be British?
  • What is a citizen and perceptions of being ‘British’.
  • How socially diverse is Britain?
  • Are we all equal citizens?
  • Prejudice and discrimination.
  • How can discrimination be reduced?
  • Rights and responsibilities
  • What are my rights and responsibilities?
  • How are my rights protected?
  • How do the courts protect my rights?

Unit 2: Democracy, Active Citizenship and Participation

  • Making a difference and Active Citizenship.
  • Who holds power in the UK?
  • How you can get involved and make a difference
  • People working together to create change


Unit 3: Power and Justice

  • Crime, Justice and Punishment
  • The nature of crime and the role of the police
  • The Crown Prosecution Service and the trial process
  • Who makes decisions: judges, magistrates and juries
  • Sentencing
  • Politics, Power and Participation
  • What is the nature of representative democracy in the UK?
  • How are those elected held to account?
  • What is the relationship of citizens to those elected?
  • The power and influence of government
  • The global village

Unit 4: Global Issues and Making a Difference

  • Global Citizenship
  • Are there universal human rights?
  • How are human rights protected?
  • Human rights abuse
  • How can citizens bring about change on human rights?
  • Global Issues
  • Conflict and its resolution
  • In-depth study of one international conflict
  • What are key global trade and environmental issues?
  • How can citizens make a difference?
  • Active Citizenship
  • In-depth case study of a group that has made a difference

Is there anything else I need to know?

Citizenship Studies combines particularly well with Politics, Law and Sociology.  There is considerable overlap between these subjects and Citizenship Studies and students will particularly benefit from the knowledge and skills development offered by the course. Some students also choose AS Citizenship Studies because it is quite different to their other subjects and broadens the scope of their studies.

Progression Routes:

Citizenship Studies attracts full UCAS points for university entrance and employers also welcome the knowledge and skills it develops

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