Accessibility links

Government & Politics A Level at Coombe Boys' School

Course description

The aim of A Level Politics is to develop pupils’ critical awareness of the nature of politics and the relationship between political ideas, institutions and processes. Pupils will acquire knowledge and understanding of the structures of authority and power within the political system of the United Kingdom, and how these may differ from those of other political systems. Pupils will also acquire knowledge and informed understanding of the rights and responsibilities of the individual and encourage an interest in, and engagement with, contemporary politics.

The Department organizes trips and events to develop your political awareness. Recent events have included talks by General Election candidates, visits to the Houses of Parliament, question and answer sessions with MPs and Lords as well as co-curricular opportunities such as participation in The Cabinet Office’s Spending Challenge.

Course content

Students begin their Year 13 A2 work at the end of the summer term, when they are still in Year 12 and return from study leave. The A2 course explores American Politics and allows more specialisation, requiring more skills analysis and evaluation.

Synoptic assessment will be examined through the essay questions in Units 3 and 4, and will draw on the skills required to analyse conflicting political viewpoints, including the extent of rivalry between these viewpoints and an awareness of the significance of these viewpoints for an understanding of the issue or question.

Entry requirements

Students must have at least 7 A* - C grades at G.C.S.E. It is preferred that students have studied history or another humanities subject at G.C.S.E and gained at the very minimum a B grade. Pupils also need good literacy skills so a B grade or higher for G.C.S.E English Literature and Language is essential. Whilst we do not presume any prior knowledge of British Politics we do expect enthusiasm and interest, it is absolutely vital that pupils follow current political events in the news.

Assessment

In all four units students will be expected to use current examples to support their answers. Assessment will involve a variety of modes including short-answer questions, stimulus response, extended writing and essays.

AS Unit 1: Peoples and Politics and Unit 2: Governing the UK Both units require a deep understanding of British politics and consider political institutions, political parties, pressure groups and constitutional reform. How democratic is the UK? Should the House of Lords be reformed? Are the judiciary too powerful? How similar are our main political parties? These are the some of the issues that will be discussed and analysed at AS Level. Assessment: 1 hour 20 minutes exam for each unit with each unit worth 50% of AS

A2 Unit 3: Representative Processes in the USA and Unit 4: Governing the USA Both units require a deep understanding of the politics of the USA and consider the constitution, political institutions, political parties, pressure groups and racial minorities in depth. Who is more powerful the Congress or the President? Is America a racist society? Are lobbyists too powerful? Are US elections all about money? These are the some of the issues that will be discussed and analysed at A2 Level.

Future opportunities

Politics can lead to further study in Law, International Relations, Sociology, Media Studies, Business Studies, Management, Politics and more at university. Politics develops skills that are relevant to careers such as Law, Journalism, Civil Service, Politics, Teaching and Management.

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact Coombe Boys' School directly.

Last updated date: 13 July 2015

Key information

  • Start date: Next September
  • Duration: 1 - 2 Years

Venues