St Mary's Catholic College, Wallasey

St Mary's Catholic College
A Voluntary Aided Academy

Government & Politics

"I have learned the workings of our country in an interesting and engaging way."
Hannah, Year 13

About the Course:

Government and Politics is an exciting course that aims to provide students with a full working knowledge of the issues confronting a modern government and a mature democracy. Students are encouraged to involve themselves in political debate over a range of current issues and should be prepared to defend their opinions. Communication skills, debating skills, persuading, and researching are some of the skills that will be enhanced by studying politics.

Students will be encouraged to involve themselves in observing or participating in actual political processes locally, nationally and internationally, in both day to day activities and during special fieldwork activities in the UK and USA.

AS Level:

Unit 1: People and politics (50% of AS and 25% of full A level) This unit introduces students to general concepts in politics like power and authority and attempts to develop appreciation for the challenges to those in authority from people, political parties and pressure groups in a democracy.

Unit 2: Governing the UK (50% of AS and 25% of full A level)
Students will study the function and dysfunction of the fundamental cornerstones of UK democratic government including parliament, the constitution and the Prime Minister.

A2 Level:

Unit 3: Representative Process in the USA (25% of A Level) Students will study the contrasting systems that operate in the US version of democracy. This includes a study of political parties, racial and ethnic issues and elections and voting.

Unit 4: Governing the USA (15% of A Level) Essentially this unit does the same as Unit 2 but concentrates on the features of government peculiar to the USA like the Congress, Supreme Court and Presidency.

How it will be assessed:

Each unit will be assessed in an end-of-year external examination.

What it prepares you for:

A politics qualification will enhance your understanding of democracy, the law, the role of individuals within society and the mechanics of government at a local, national and international level. Politics students go into a very wide variety of different careers and courses of study including politics itself, the law, international relations, the media, and many others.

Entry requirements:

A minimum of five GCSE passes at Grade C or above, including English.