Citizenship Studies

At KS4, two groups of students in each year group, can choose to study GCSE Citizenship Studies instead of GCSE Religious Studies. The GCSE Citizenship Studies course builds upon the Citizenship topics and skills developed during KS3 Personal Development lessons.

We study AQA GCSE Citizenship Studies. There are four key themes: Life in Modern Britain, Rights and Responsibilities, Politics and Participation and Active Citizenship.

The examination course is taught over five 60 minute lessons per fortnight, supported by well-designed and meaningful weekly homework tasks. Lessons take place in a specific Citizenship Studies classroom. The subject is well supported by recently published text books and current case studies.

Life in Modern Britain:

Students study the make-up, values and dynamics of contemporary UK society. They will consider what it means to be British, how our identities are formed and how we have multiple identities. Students will also look at the role and responsibilities of the traditional media, the impact of new media formats and the UK's role in international issues.

Rights and Responsibilities:

Students look at the nature of laws and the principles upon which laws are based, how the citizen engages with legal processes, how the justice system operates in the UK, how laws have developed over time and how society deals with criminality. Students will consider also how rights are protected, the nature of universal human rights and how the UK participates in international treaties and agreements. This theme also considers how the citizen can both play a part and bring about change within the legal system.

Politics and Participation:

Students will look at the nature of political power in the UK and the core concepts relating to democracy and government. This includes how government operates at its various levels within the UK, how decisions are made and how the UK parliament works and carries out its functions. It also looks at the role of political parties, the election system, how other countries govern themselves and how the citizen can bring about political change.

Active Citizenship:

The exam specification is developed around the overarching principle of how citizens can try to make a difference in society. The active citizenship theme enables students to explore through case study approaches and by their own actions how citizens are able to try to make a difference.

The first question posed on the Active citizenship section of the exam relates to understanding citizenship actions and includes a source-based question relating to a citizenship action scenario.

The second question on the Active citizenship section requires students to undertake an investigation into a citizenship issue of their own choice which involves research, action and reflection.