Government and Politics
Head of department: James Butler
Politics at Christ's is offered as an A-Level. It is the logical next step for students who have excelled at Citizenship GCSE, but is broadly chosen by students who enjoy humanities, English, current affairs.
We study the Edexcel A-level Politics course which provides students with an understanding of UK government and politics in the first year and global politics in the second, whilst also studying core political ideologies.
It is the course of choice for students who have an interest in political events, debates and current affairs in the UK, EU, USA and internationally.
Politics A-Level is taught by a dedicated subject specialist teacher, Mr Butler.
In Year 12 students are introduced to the political system in Britain. This includes theories of democracy, types of political participation and understanding of elections and different voting systems. We also examine and evaluate the roles, policies and methods of political organisations and political parties.
The course includes evaluation and debate of the effectiveness of political institutions such as Parliament, the PM, the House of Lords, Cabinet and the judiciary and analyses the state of human rights and civil liberties in the UK. Students will also study voting behaviour in different elections and depth studies of the circumstances and events of 3 different General Elections.
Students learn about the three core political ideologies of Conservatism, Liberalism and Socialism, and analyse the different traditions and competing viewpoints within each one.
In the A2 year students are introduced to theories of international relations/global politics and explore themes such as globalisation, human rights, the environment, changes in global power. We also critically analyse the roles and importance of international organisations such as the UN, the EU, G-8/20, NATO, the IMF, World Bank and the WTO.
We do not sit the AS Level.
There are 3 A-Level Politics exams, each paper is 2 hours long, worth 84 marks, and contains a mixture of source based and non-source based essays.
Paper 1: UK Politics and core political ideas
Paper 2: UK Government and non-core political ideas
Paper 3: Global Politics
Historical context of the UK political system
Government in the UK
The prime minister and executive
The Supreme Court
The European Union
Political participation in the UK
Democracy and political participation
Voting behaviour and the role of the media in politics
Core political ideas
Non-core political ideas
The state and globalisation
Political and economic global governance
Human Rights and Environmental global governance
Power and Developments
Regionalism and the EU
Homework is set via the google classroom and will involve 3 pieces per week, with a mixture of research, pre-reading, evaluations, and essay planning.
Enrichment and Extra-Curricular
We invite a range of guest speakers into the School, students have the opportunity to meet with the local MP following a tour of Parliament and the Supreme Court, and a visit to Europe House in Westminster.
Government and Politics is a good facilitating course that would suit students considering higher education courses in a wide range of humanities and social sciences, including:
- Government and Politics
- Politics/Political Science
- International Relations
- American Politics
80% of leavers who took Politics A-Level over the past two years have chosen to study Politics, combined Politics honours, or Politics and International Relations at University
2019 will be the first sitting of the reformed linear Politics A-Level. Specification information and sample papers can be found at:
Textbook and Revision Resources
Required core text books:
- UK Government and Politics; Lynch, Fairclough and Cooper
- Global Politics for A-Level; Murphy, Jefferies, Gadsby
- Political Ideas for A-Level; Kelly and McNaughton
Non-core text books:
- The Globalisation of World Politics: Baylis, Smith, Owens
- Edexcel AS&A-Level Politics: Pearson (Colclough)
- Global Politics: Heywood
- UK Government and Politics: McNaughton
- Essentials of UK Politics: Heywood
- All students will receive a subscription to Politics Review Quarterly
- The school library subscribes to The Spectator, New Statesman, The Economist
- Students of Government and Politics are encouraged to follow a dedicated Twitter feed containing relevant articles, links and information relevant to their studies.