Government and Politics

Why should I study this subject?

Politicians and political decision making are vital in any society, and no matter how many people say things to the contrary, politics is important and will not go away. Although decision makers may sometimes appear remote, we can influence them, particularly if we know and understand how the system works.

Whilst keeping a keen eye on current events in lessons, the focus of the Year 12 course is the ‘nuts and bolts’ of the UK political system and how it continues to evolve. The Year 13 course gets to grips with the major political issues which will include the NHS, education and the alleviation of poverty, the state of the economy, law and order and the impact of the EU on the UK. There is no doubt that it is an interesting and rewarding course.

What will I study?

Unit 1: People and Politics

This unit introduces learners to the key channels of communication between government and the people and encourages them to evaluate the adequacy of existing arrangements for ensuing representative democracy and participation.

Key areas of study

  • Democracy and Political Participation
  • Party Policies and Ideas
  • Elections
  • Pressure groups

 Unit 2: Governing the UK

This unit introduces learners to the major governmental processes within the UK. It encourages the development of a critical understanding of the role and effectiveness of key institutions and the relationship amongst them in context of multilevel governance.

Key areas of study;

  • The Constitution
  • Parliament
  • The Prime Minister and Cabinet
  • Judges and Civil Liberties

Unit 3: UK Political Issues

This topic looks at key policy issues in the UK, particularly those that have affected the outcomes of general elections or stimulated public debate.

Key area of study:

  • Economic Policy
  • Social Welfare, Health and Education
  • Law, Order and Criminal Justice
  • Environmental Policy

Unit 4: EU Political Issues

This topic examines the political issues that have arisen as a result of the process of European integration and the impact of the EU on the UK. It also looks at European institutions and their inter relationships and the European economic and social model.

Key areas of study:

  • The impact of the EU on the UK
  • European integration
  • EU Institutions and their Relationships
  • Domestic Policy Issues


What are the entry requirements?

Please check this subject table for full details of our A Level entry requirements.

What skills do I need?

Have a genuine interest in current affairs.Good verbal and written communication

How will I be taught?

The subject is taught by experienced teachers using a variety of teaching methods. The College Moodle site is very well-developed, full use is made of class discussions and group work supported by excellent handouts. Guest speakers are invited into college and the department arranges visits to interesting conferences.

How will I be assessed?

Year 1 – answer a combination of stimulus response and other structured questions in examinations.

Year 2 – there is a broader mix of questions but with more emphasis placed on essay writing.

What will the course prepare me for?

You can go on to study politics courses at university. Other popular choices include economics, business/management, sociology, social policy and history.

How much private study should I expect to do?

3/4 hours per week

What materials will I need to purchase?


What is the exam board?


This subject is for you if… you have an interest in where power lies within our society and how decisions are made which shape our lives.

This subject is not for you if… you find examinations a challenge and have no interest in the news or current affairs.