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A-Level

Politics

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The study of politics is the understanding of events which are happening now. These events are not restricted to parliament and congress but impact everyday life for us all.

Exam Board

AQA

Entry Requirements

GCSE grade 5 in English language or English literature.

Assessment

  • 100% Exams
About this course FAQs An introduction to Politics Pathways Information

What is Politics?

The study of Politics at A-level explores the theory, practice, and institutions of governance and power through the study of political systems, ideologies, and key concepts that impact life for us all. Students are encouraged to critically engage with political theories and apply them to real-world issues and events. They learn to assess the strengths and weaknesses of different political arguments, evaluate evidence, and develop their own well-reasoned perspectives.

 

What will I study?  

At A level students will study topics that explore the nature and purpose of politics, the roles of different political actors, and the structures of government. Topics such as Parliament, pressure groups, Prime Minister and elections students will learn where power lies and explore political processes like elections, decision-making, and policy formulation, as well as the dynamics of power relations between different individuals and groups. Study of the American political system covers the same topics as the UK and allows for comparative reflection between the two nations. The course also examines the following key political ideologies: Liberalism, Conservatism, Socialism, and Feminism, analysing their origins, principles, and impacts on society.

 

Assessments

There are three exams and each lasts two hours. Paper 1 covers government and politics of the UK, Paper 2 covers government and politics of the US and Paper 3 covers political ideologies.

 

Trips, visits and enrichments:

  • Trip to Parliament
  • Trip to Supreme Court
  • Trip to Party Conferences
  • Visiting speakers including MPs and Lords
  • Trip to the USA (dependent on numbers)

 

What can it lead to?

Students can be confident in improving the following skills whilst studying politics.

  • Analytical Thinking
  • Research Skills
  • Communication Skills
  • Negotiation and Diplomacy
  • Critical Analysis of Policy
  • Intercultural competence
  • Leadership and Teamwork
  • Ethical Reasoning

Studying politics can lead to careers in government institutions, civil service, political consultancy, political campaigning, think tanks, policy analysis, and political journalism. These roles involve working directly in political processes, policy formulation, research, and communication. Those who wish to study it further in collaboration with a language or international relations could forward to careers in international relations, diplomacy, or foreign affairs. This includes working for international organizations, embassies, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), and multilateral institutions.

Away from a future in a politics related field the study of politics can be beneficial to pursuing careers in a wide variety of fields. The analytical skills, critical thinking, and understanding of political systems acquired through politics studies can be valuable for legal practice, advocacy, or specializing in areas such as constitutional law or human rights. Politics A-level can be a stepping stone into journalism or media careers with a focus on political reporting, analysis, or commentary. Political knowledge and understanding of public affairs are essential for roles in journalism, broadcasting, or online media.

FAQs

Do I need to know about politics before I start the course?
No. Whilst some students may have prior political knowledge or experience we do not require anyone to have a level of understanding before they start the course. All we ask of you is to turn up with a positive attitude, a desire to learn and a willingness to read the news and follow current affairs.
Do I need to buy papers everyday or subscribe to a magazine?
Whilst we want you to read the news on a daily basis there are no financial requirements. The college subscribes to a good selection of news outlets to give you a wide ranging choice to find material to support your course of study.

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