The Politics course covers the UK’s system of representative democracy and government as well as that of the USA. It also covers the major political ideologies/ philosophies of conservatism, liberalism and socialism as well as other concepts such as nationalism.

Future prospects

Politics is a highly respected A level with obvious applications to research, journalism, the civil service, the law etc. As a mature parliamentary democracy with universal adult suffrage perhaps all UK students should study Politics!

Synopsis of A level

Paper 1 – UK Politics and core political philosophies
This unit covers the workings of the UK’s parliamentary democracy and the core political philosophies of conservatism, liberalism and socialism. You will discover the political make up of the UK over time and examples like why, at the 2015 election the Conservatives gained 36.9% of the vote, UKIP 12.8% of the vote and the Scottish National Party 4.7% of the vote yet the Conservatives gained 331 MPs and formed a government, the SNP got 56 MPs and UKIP got 1 MP; yet arguably UKIP were the most successful of the 3 parties at achieving their core political objective.

Paper 2 – UK government and other political philosophies
This unit covers the workings of the UK government. Find out how the Prime Minister must interact with parliament, his own party and other branches of government to, for example, implement Brexit. This unit also covers the UK constitution. Find out how Britain has developed from a medieval arbitrary monarchy to a parliamentary democracy governed by the rule of law and further into an effectively federal system with powers devolved to assemblies in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. This unit also covers other political ideologies such as nationalism including different forms of nationalism and French, German, Italian and Black Nationalist thinkers.

Paper 3 – The US
This unit covers the US federal constitution, voting systems and the workings of its presidential and parliamentary systems. Find out how the US and UK systems differ and are similar. Also study the US constitution which was designed, in 1776, as the most democratic in the world; yet today is listed by the “Economist Intelligence Unit” on its democracy index as a “flawed democracy”.