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Overview

The Kings Advanced Level Foundation is based on A-level syllabuses, taught by A-level teachers, assessed against A-levels and moderated by an independent Advisory Board of external examiners. As such, it is one of the most highly academic and successful pathways to leading UK universities.

Government and Politics is an elective module within the Foundation, and is ideal for students who are interested in studying either this, or another Humanities-based subject, at university.

Key Facts

Start Dates:

  • 4 January 2021
  • 4 April 2021 (Extended programme only)
  • 15 June 2021 (Extended programme only)
  • 6 September 2021

Colleges:

  • Bournemouth
  • Brighton
  • London
  • Oxford

Entry level:

  • Academic: Completed 11-12 years of schooling
  • English: IELTS 5.5 or equivalent

Minimum age:

  • 16.5

Length:

  • 1 Academic Year (3 terms)
  • Extended programme: 1-2 Academic Years (4-7 terms)

Lessons:

  • Average 21 hours per week (plus homework and private study)

Class size:

  • 8-12

Learning outcomes

  • An understanding of the framework of political institutions in the UK and US.
  • The ability to explain and analyse political and governmental processes and outcomes. 
  • The ability to use political concepts and specialist vocabulary with confidence.
  • The skills required to analyse and evaluate arguments. 
  • The ability to write clearly structured essays which develop a line of argument. 

Course content and structure

The Advanced Level Foundation programme is highly flexible, and able to adapt to the needs and academic aspirations of each student. It does this through a combination of core modules and a series of elective modules which can be combined in different ways to create main subject streams.

Government and Politics is one of the many elective modules offered, and an overview of the syllabus content is shown below.

Term 1

UK Politics

  • Democracy and Participation: direct and representative democracy; liberal democracy; criticsing democracy; political participation and evaluating participation in the UK 
  • The UK Constitution: sources of the UK’s uncodified constitution, parliamentary sovereignty; the Constitution’s strengths and weaknesses 
  • Elections: General Elections using data; simple plurality system; evaluating the voting system for UK General Elections 
  • Parliament: functions; legislative process; composition; devolved assemblies – case study on Scotland; parliamentary reform – in particular the House of Lords 
  • UK political parties: functions of parties; major and emerging parties and how they interact in the UK political system 
  • UK Executive: powers and roles of the prime minister; executive scrutiny; theories of executive power 

Term 2

US Politics

  • The US Constitution: structure of the Constitution; Bill of Rights; Amendments; Amendment process 
  • Congress: introduction and composition; legislative process; a study of Senators and Congressmen 
  • Elections: The Electoral College; Congressional elections — case study of the 2014 mid-terms and 2016 Congressional election 
  • The Presidency: roles and powers of the President; theories of presidential power; case studies of modern presidents 
  • Supreme Court: constitutional role; judicial review; case studies of landmark decisions on controversial issues 

Term 3

Political Ideologies

  • UK and US Political Ideology  
  • Core Ideologies: Liberalism, Conservatism, Socialism and Nationalism 

Sample subject combinations with Government and Politics

  • Government and Politics, Business, Economics
  • Government and Politics, History, Economics
  • Government and Politics, Business, Geography

Sample enrichment activities

  • Houses of Parliament trip 
  • Bletchley Park visit 
  • Debating Society 
  • Current Affairs and News Club 
  • History Film Club 
  • Trinity Arts awards 

Sample academic calendar (2019-2020)

Year 1

September

  • 9th: term starts
  • Student induction

October

  • 21 – 27th: half term
  • Progress tests

November

  • University fairs and talks

December

  • 13th: term ends
  • End of term exams

January

  • 6th: term starts

February

  • 13th – 14th: half term
  • Progress tests
  • University fairs

March

  • End of term exams
  • 20th: term ends

April

  • 6th: term starts

May

  • Progress tests

June

  • Exams
  • 12th: term ends

Recommended reading

Below is a list of text books normally used on this course, as well as books which may help you prepare for your studies prior to arrival. In many cases the textbooks will be supplied by the school, and you may borrow them for the duration of your time at school. However, if you already know what three subjects you want to choose you may prefer to purchase one before you arrive.

  • AS UK Government and Politics 4th Edition 4 by Paul Fairclough, Philip Lynch, Eric Magee 
  • Edexcel Government & Politics for A2: Ideologies Illustrated by Neil McNaughton 

Progression

Below are some of the recent students who took the Government and Politics module, including information about the university they progressed to and the degree course they are doing.

    Recent alumni

    Alina Kurmanbayeva

    • Government & Politics/Business/Economics/Data/CSS
    • SOAS
    • Politics and Economics 

    Hiu Ying Lee

    • Government & Politics/Economics/Geography/CSS/Data
    • Lancaster University
    • Law

    David Manasayan

    • Government & Politics/Geography/Economics/Data/CSS
    • Royal Holloway, University of London
    • International Relations and Politics 

    Bo Wang

    • Government & Politics/Art & Design/Geography/Data/CSS 
    • University of Warwick
    • Language, Culture and Communication 

    Bettina Tulkens

    • Government & Politics/Geography/Economics/Data/CSS
    • King’s College London
    • Politics of the International Economy 

    Mai Anh Pham

    • Government & Politics/Geography/Business/Data/CSS
    • University of Surrey
    • Media and Film Studies

    Juliet Petit

    • Government & Politics/ Geography/Economics/Data/CSS
    • University of Bath
    • Politics and Economics 

    Thank you for your enquiry.
    We'll be in touch soon.
    The Kings Admissions Team