A-level Politics

Develop stand-out analytical, evaluative and critical thinking skills with our AQA A-level in Politics.

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Overview

Whether we realise it or not, politics has a huge impact on our everyday lives: it's in the decisions we make, the laws we follow and the way we're governed. Not only is politics enduringly relevant, but studying it also helps develop key skills such as the ability to interpret and explain complex ideas and form sound arguments with critical judgement. 

In this AQA A-level Politics course, you'll explore the different governmental systems and political parties in the UK. Then you'll take a close look at how elections work, considering voting behaviour and referendums, as well as the ideologies that influence elections and government decisions. You'll gain a solid understanding of the politics of the USA, learning about the key aspects of authority, the relations between institutions and political ideologies and discerning the differences between UK and US systems. 

What you'll learn

Unit 1 - The government of the UK

To begin, you’ll take a look at the British constitution and its key principles. You’ll identify key terms such as statute law, common law and parliamentary sovereignty. You’ll examine the strengths and weaknesses of the British constitution and various modern reforms that have taken place. You’ll take an in-depth look at the branches of the British government, the structure of parliament and the role of the UK Prime Minister. Finally, you’ll investigate the topic of devolution and what it means in relation to the UK political system.

Unit 2 - Politics of the UK

You’ll open unit two by studying democracy and participation, learning what is meant by a ‘direct’ and ‘representative’ democracy and which is better. You’ll examine how democracy operates in the UK, along with some of its positive and negative aspects. Moving on, you’ll study political parties and pressure groups, understanding the role they play in UK politics and how they seek to influence policy. Finally, you’ll take a look at the European Union, its history and structure, along with the significance of Britain’s decision to leave.

Unit 3 - The government of the USA

In unit three of this Government and Politics A-level course, you’ll study the constitutional framework of the US government, the key principles of its constitution and the relevance it holds for the people of the US today. Next, you’ll look at the legislative, executive and judiciary, understanding the structure and function of each and how they interact with one another.

Unit 4 - Politics of the USA

Next, you’ll look at the electoral process in America, including the electoral college system, abstention and incumbency. You’ll take a look at the various factors which can determine the outcome of an election in the US, including the media and funding. Moving on, you’ll examine political parties in the US, including party decline and renewal and how independent candidates operate. Finally, you’ll study the role of pressure groups, along with key landmarks in the civil rights movement which altered US politics forever.

Unit 5 - Comparative politics

Unit five of A-level Politics will focus on a comparison between the government and politics of the US and the UK, evaluating the similarities and differences between them. You’ll look at constitutional arrangements, the role of the President and Prime Minister, legislatures, executives and the judiciaries. You’ll also examine the similarities and differences between the electoral and party systems in the US and UK, including the role of third-party and independent candidates. Lastly, you’ll look at the role and evolution of pressure groups and civil rights movements within both political systems.

Unit 6 - Core ideologies

Unit six will focus on the core ideologies within politics. You’ll examine:

  • Liberalism, including its classical and modern forms.
  • Conservativism, including traditional conservativism and the ‘new right’.
  • Socialism, including revolutionary socialism and social democracy.
Unit 7 - Other ideologies

In the final unit of Politics A-level, you’ll look at other ideologies that have shaped politics, both in the US and the UK. You’ll examine nationalism, feminism, multiculturalism, anarchism and ecologism.

Extra info

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Awarding Body

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AQA qualifications are internationally recognised and taught in 30 countries around the world, highly valued by employers and universities and enable young people to progress to the next stage of their lives. AQA qualifications suit a range of abilities and include GCSE courses, IGCSE courses and A-level courses.

Recognised through UCAS

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This course carries UCAS points. This means that it can be used to gain direct access to University courses and other Higher Education, through the UCAS system.

Course Outcome

Upon successful completion of this distance learning course, you will receive an A-level certificate in Politics, issued by AQA. Your certificate is identical to that issued to students at any other school, college or university in the UK.

This syllabus (7152) has been chosen by Oxbridge because it is the best suited to online learning and we believe it provides the best chance of success.

How is this course assessed or examined?

You can enrol now for AQA Politics A-level examinations from Summer 2023.

You'll be required to complete three standard A-level written exams:

  • Paper 1: 2 hours, 33.3% of A-level, 77 marks.
  • Paper 2: 2 hours, 33.3% of A-level, 77 marks.
  • Paper 3: 2 hours, 33.3% of A-level, 77 marks.

These exams contain a mixture of short and long answer questions and extended response questions.

Entry requirements

A GCSE or equivalent in History is recommended for this course. This AQA A-level Politics syllabus is a difficulty level three: an A-level or BTEC equivalent difficulty, usually suitable for most learners of all ages.

FAQs

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Exam Results: I need to resit my exams, can I enrol with Oxbridge?

At Oxbridge, we take enrolments all year round. Once you’re enrolled, you’ll be able to get started right away. Studying online means your work and revision fit around you and your lifestyle. For example, if you have a part-time job or need to study alongside other subjects, you’ll be able to find time to fit our online courses into your schedule.

Enjoy flexible, convenient, affordable learning, fully supported by expert tutors who are passionate about their subjects. We pride ourselves on the quality of our course tutors and know that they hold the key to success. Whatever your goals, dreams or aspirations, Oxbridge is here to help you facilitate them.

Exam Results: When will I receive my certificate?

Oxbridge students who sat their exams through our partnership exam centres will usually receive their certificates in November. Certificates will be sent out by recorded delivery.

Wondering what to do next? There are so many options available, it’s important to get the right advice. Whether your choice is to continue onto further education, go into job training or get an apprenticeship and whether your grades are high or low – there are always options! Speak to an adviser today to see how we can support you on your next steps…

Exam Results: I didn't pass English or Maths, what do I do next?

First of all, don’t worry – everything will be okay. Unfortunately, if you didn’t get a grade 4 or higher (equivalent to a C or above) in your English and Maths, you will have to re-take it in order to pass. Oxbridge is ready and available to support you with this. Get in touch via live chat, phone or email.

Exam Results: I have individual unit marks, but no overall grade. What should I do?

Check for a cash-in code on your statement of entry. If there isn’t one, cash-in may not have been applied for. Cash-in can be applied for retrospectively from your exam centre and once entered you can expect an overall grade in one week.

Exam Results: I haven't done as well as I expected in my exams. Is there anything I can do?

Yes! There are a number of post-result services available. Your entering centre will be able to provide you with further information and will process any requests for you. If you’re not sure where to turn, our friendly learning advisers are on hand and ready to help you.

Can I study this AQA A-level course if I do not live in England?

Yes! All of our learning is online, however, you will need to sit your exams in England. Find out more about exams.

What can I do with my A-levels?

A-levels are a universal way to demonstrate academic competency in a multitude of disciplines. A-levels are subject-based qualifications that lead to either university, further study, training, or work. A-levels serve as a standardised way to demonstrate your academic ability and are very common entry requirements to most higher-level courses.

Why study an online A-level course from home?

A-levels can be studied from home with Oxbridge, using our online platform. On average we find that students receive 20% higher grades and pass around 30% more quickly than in a traditional college.

How many UCAS points is an A-level course?

A-levels are the most common way to access university in the UK. The system in which this is done is called UCAS. This stands for: “the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service”. See the A-level UCAS tariff points breakdown below:

  • A* – 56
  • A – 48
  • B – 40
  • C – 32
  • D – 24
  • E – 16
What A-Level courses should I take?

If you’re planning on going on to a degree, your chosen university will usually publish their entry requirements for each course on their website. See how these subjects feel and decide if you would enjoy them as they will form much of the base knowledge for your degree.

If you’re not entirely sure what to study, there are some standard subjects that many students choose to help them secure a place at a prestigious university, such as one of the Russell Group universities. These courses are known as the ‘facilitating courses’ and include Biology, Chemistry, Physics, English Literature, Geography, History, Maths, Further Maths, Modern Languages and Classical Languages.

Generally speaking, taking two facilitating subjects will allow you to keep your progression options open. For further help and guidance, we have written a detailed guide on How to Choose A-Levels.

How long does it take to study an A-level?

It’s possible to study an A-level course both full-time and part-time. Normally students would study for two years, but with Oxbridge, you can also fast-track your course to complete it in one year.

What are A-Levels?

A-levels (also known as Advanced level qualifications) entail in-depth study of a chosen subject in order to open doors to further study including University, training, and work.

A-levels courses tend to focus on specific academic subjects such as Mathematics, English and the Sciences: Biology, Chemistry and Physics. The course material and the exams you take will be the same everywhere.

Who should study A-level Politics?

This online course is ideal for those who want to explore a career in politics, government, organisational structures, diplomacy or teaching. It will provide you with a solid foundation in the history and contemporary politics of British society while also equipping you with sought after skills.

Are there assignments for this Politics AQA A-level course?

Yes, during your online Politics A-level course, you’ll be required to complete various assignments. These do not contribute to your final grade but provide you with an opportunity to submit work to your tutor for marking and feedback. This will help you to monitor your progress and will be used to produce predicted grades if needed.

Does this A-levels Politics course have a reading list?

Yes. There are set texts that will come free with the course as e-books:

  1. Edexcel UK Government and Politics for AS/A Level (Fifth Edition), N McNaughton, Hodder Education 2017.
  2. US Government and Politics for A-level (Fifth Edition), A Bennett, Hodder Education 2017.
  3. Political Ideas for A Level: Liberalism, Conservatism, Socialism, Nationalism, Multiculturalism, Ecologism, R Kelly and N McNaughton, Hodder Education 2017.
How much do exams cost?

Exam fees vary depending on where you sit them. Planning on studying A-levels or GCSEs with us? Learn more about our exam process for these course categories.

Students can contact our partnership centre to find out more – you can find their details on MyOxbridge under NEAS and Exams.

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