Richard Challoner School



Subject Leader: Mr B O’Neill

A Vision for Politics

People should study Politics because it affects every aspect of our daily lives, and it is important for people to understand how to hold authority to account and challenge it when necessary. It is also important because people should be able to express their opinions and beliefs in an evidence-based way and challenge others who hold beliefs to the contrary.

“In politics, nothing happens by accident. If it happens, you can bet it was planned that way.”

Franklin D. Roosevelt

Course content: This course will introduce you to the major political institutions of the United Kingdom and the United States. You will find out what power political institutions actually hold and the power we have over them. We will also ask whether these institutions function efficiently and look at the case for making changes to our current system of government. Our studies also focus on the power of ideology and the system of government in the United States and how it compares to our own system of government here in Britain. The study of politics will help you gain an understanding of the key political philosophies that have influenced British, American and International politics. You will be equipped with the skills and concepts needed to make mature judgements about a wide range of current affairs. The study of Politics is a traditional step towards a career in journalism or broadcasting, law, school or university teaching, and local or national politics. It will give you the opportunity to practise and acquire a wealth of valuable skills which are held in high demand and esteem in many fields of employment.

There are three components to the course:

Component 1:
UK Politics.

Topics include democracy, participation, political parties, electoral ystems, voting behaviour, the media and core political ideas such as conservatism, liberalism and socialism.

Component 2:
UK Government.

Topics include the UK constitution, parliament, Prime Minister and executive as well as relationships between the different branches of government. We also choose to focus on one political ideology in this section from a choice of anarchism, ecologism, feminism, multiculturalism or nationalism.

Component 3:
Comparative Politics.

Students will study the politics of the USA, including the US Constitution and federalism, US congress, US presidency, US Supreme Court, democracy, participation and civil rights.

Examination/Assessment: Three written examinations for each component.

Specific Entry Requirement: GCSE Grade 6 in English Language and English Literature, Grade B in History.