St John Plessington Catholic College

About the course:

This subject is offered as an A Level course.
Do you know who you would vote for in a General Election? Do you think Britain should adopt the Euro? Should Scotland become  independent of Britain? Can pressure groups really make a difference? How has the ‘War on Terror’ changed Britain? Do we still need political parties? Why did George Bush become President in 2000 when more people voted for his opponent? Why did Barack Obama  win such a landslide victory? Why is the gun culture so widespread in the USA? How much control does ‘big business’ have over governments? All these questions, which are of crucial importance in today’s world, are explored as part of the AS and A2 Government  and Politics course ultimately, Government and Politics is the study of power. This course will allow you to discover how  much power the people really have. The students are expected to have achieved at least a grade C in GCSE English to take this course.

You will complete four areas of study during the two year course. These are People and Politics of the UK and Governing the UK at AS level and representative Processes in the USA and Governing the USA at A2 level. These units involve looking at issues such as selection, pressure groups, political parties, the power of the Prime Minister and the President, the role of the Law as well as issues  such as the economy and race.

Through these areas of study you will:

  • Develop excellent analytical skills
  • Develop effective communication techniques
  • Develop the ability to form a coherent written and oral argument
  • Develop an understanding of the world we live in today

A fundamental part of the course is a willingness to follow the news, through the TV, internet or newspapers. However, there will also be the opportunity to visit the places where the news is made, be it a trip to Parliament in Westminster or a visit to the White House in Washington DC. You are also able to attend political conferences featuring well-known people such as David Cameron, Ian Hislop, George Galloway, Jack Straw and Charles Kennedy.


AS Level

  • People and Politics of the UK – 1 Hour 20 mins written exam in June
  • Governing the UK – 1 Hour 20 mins written exam in June

A2 Level

  • Representative Processes in the USA – 1 Hour 30 mins written exam in June
  • Governing the USA – 1 hour 30 mins written exam in June

Is there anything else I need to know?

Government and Politics is a popular choice in combination with subjects such as History, English and Geography at AS and A2, but equally can offer breadth of knowledge to those who have chosen a Mathematics and Science route through Sixth Form.

Progression Routes

The subject is highly respected by universities and their admissions tutors and it is directly related to subjects found within their Social Sciences, Arts and Law faculties. Popular career choices for students who have studied Government and Politics are journalism, the  media and marketing, business and Law.

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