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Politics A-Level at New College Pontefract

Course description

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.


Course content

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

Entry requirements

Level 5 in English Language



A combination of stimulus response and other structured questions in examinations, and a greater emphasis on essay writing in Year 2

Financial information

Financial support can be provided to students of families who are on low income to help with extra costs of staying on in education. If you need any further information please visit our website or contact student services.

Future opportunities

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

Further information

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.

Private Study
As an approximate guideline Year 1 subjects require three to four hours of independent study each; Year 2 subjects four to five hours each and GCSE subjects two hours each.

What materials will I need to purchase?

Examining Board

Politics is for you if: You have an interest in where power lies within our society and how decisions are made which shape our lives.

Politics is not for you if: You find examinations a challenge and have no interest in the news or current affairs.

How to apply

You can apply for this course through UCAS Progress. Add this course to your favourites so you can start making an application.

Last updated date: 02 October 2018
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