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We don’t always like politicians and the things that governments do, but the business of politics touches every aspect of our lives.

No matter whether a government makes you feel angry or reassured, it’s worth having knowledge of how the whole process of an elected government works and an understanding of the theories that inform the processes and institutions that govern us. A Level Politics enables you to develop critical thinking skills and enhance your ability to interpret, evaluate and comment on the nature of politics.

Subject content

In the first year of Politics, you will study three main themes. The first theme is UK Politics which covers issues such as how voting behaviour is changing in elections and what the purpose of political parties are in the UK. The second theme of study is UK Government. This covers issues such as what parliament’s role is in the UK political system and whether we have an increasingly presidential style of government. The third theme is Political Ideas where we study Socialism, Liberalism, Conservatism and an optional ideology such as Feminism or Nationalism. In this topic, you will study the ideas that inform political parties and institutions with a particular focus on the key thinkers.

The second year focuses on one main topic – Global Politics. This exciting and relevant subject will place British politics in a global context and enable you to better understand political institutions in a globalised world and the implications of recent issues such as Brexit. You will develop your understanding of existing world powers like the USA and emerging world powers, such as China, and their role in shaping global politics.

If you want to learn about people power, how government works and how ideas inform actions then this A Level is for you.

The course is an award of EDEXCEL. Visit the EDEXCEL website to read the course specification.

Specific entry requirements

GCSE Grade 5 or above in English, History or another Humanities subject.

A keen interest in politics and current affairs.

Learning methods

You will learn through a variety of methods such as lectures, activities, multimedia, discussion and debate, reading texts which develop political vocabulary, participating in group projects and writing essays in response to stimulus material. Classroom debate is perhaps the most appealing part of this course; informed and independently minded students make this one of the most interesting subjects available, provided that you are keen to learn about the political world.


You will be assessed by examination on all content at the end of two years of study.

Progression opportunities

Students who have taken A Level Politics often go on to study a range of subjects in Higher Education including politics, philosophy, sociology, economics, journalism, history, geography and business.

Politics provides a range of transferable skills which are desirable to many employers. Students may look forward to a career in politics, research, social policy, local government, the civil service, think tanks, education, journalism, business, international development, the police force and the charity sector.

Meet the A Level expert

Josephine Bird

Josephine has a BSc Psychology degree from The University of Sheffield and a PGCE from The University of Huddersfield and has been teaching for over 20 years.

Josephine said: “Politics is an exciting A Level that draws on contemporary issues from both UK politics, UK Government and global politics. Students enjoy the academic aspect of studying politics, including core political ideologies of Conservatism, Socialism and Liberalism. Students will learn to debate, discuss and use critical analysis to argue the political issues of the day.”

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