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Politics

The department aims to develop an in-depth understanding of politics and political processes; to better to understand the modern world and the challenges we face; and perhaps to reflect more deeply on human nature and what essentially motivates us. The ability to analyse and evaluate information thoughtfully and with balance; and present your ideas coherently in writing and orally in presentation, discussion and debate; is particularly highly valued.


Staff:

  • Mr T Amman, Head of Department

Trips and Visits:

Other than regular opportunities to debate, carry out independent research and develop your presentation and public speaking skills, you will have the opportunity to take part in a growing range of visits, seminars and question and answer sessions involving MPs and political experts; and, not least, the chance to visit Parliament and Washington DC as part of your A Level course. Politics students also help to organise school-wide events including school elections to coincide with national elections. There will also be occasional joint revision classes and other collaborative events with Handsworth Girls’ School. Politics combines well with other subjects and is a popular university option, either on its own or as a joint honours degree.

Able and inspired students will have the opportunity to develop wide-ranging skills and extend their reading beyond the curriculum, including participating in the politics Oxbridge preparation programme in years 12 and 13.


Year 12

Summary of curriculum:

Curriculum covers: British government and politics (Unit 1) and begins Political Ideas (Unit 3).

Main topics:

British politics: participation, parties and pressure groups, electoral systems and voting behaviour, devolution.

British government: UK Constitution and judiciary, parliament, the core executive and the EU.

Political ideas: core ideologies, liberalism, socialism and conservatism.

Assessment throughout the year:

Assessment will be in the form of three two-hour exams at the end of year 13. Each unit requires three structured questions to be answered on key content and concepts, a 25-mark extract based evaluation question and a further 25-mark essay analysing a political theme in depth. Over the course of Year 12 and 13 students will be assessed using similarly formatted questions.

How parents can support their son’s learning:

Encourage your son to closely follow current political events, read/listen to more in-depth news analysis and be willing to discuss current affairs with him.

Able and inspired opportunities:

Able and inspired students will have the opportunity to develop wide-ranging skills and extend their reading beyond the curriculum, including participating in the politics Oxbridge preparation programme in years 12 and 13.

Useful websites:

 

Year 13

Summary of curriculum:

Curriculum covers: American and comparative government and politics (Unit 2) and completes Political Ideas (Unit 3).

Main topics:

American and comparative politics: participation, parties and pressure groups, electoral systems and voting behavior.

American and comparative government: US Constitution and judiciary, Congress, the executive branch, and federalism.

Political ideas: non-core ideologies, one of anarchism, feminism, nationalism, ecologism and multi-culturalism.

Assessment throughout the year:

External end of year assessment will be in the form of three two-hour exams at the end of year 13. Each unit requires three structured questions to be answered on key content and concepts, a 25-mark extract based evaluation question and a further 25-mark essay analysing a political theme in depth.

How parents can support their son’s learning:

Encourage your son to closely follow current political events, read/listen to more in depth news analysis and be willing to discuss current affairs with him.

Able and inspired opportunities:

Able and inspired students will have the opportunity to develop wide ranging skills and extend their reading beyond the curriculum, including by participating in the politics Oxbridge preparation programme in years 12 and 13.

Useful websites: