US Government and Politics Online Single Semester
This course studies the history, organization, and functions of the United States government. Beginning with the Declaration of Independence and continuing through to the present day, students explore the relationship
Unit 1: Principles of Government
Students identify the purposes of government and evaluate theories about its origins. They compare and contrast power and authority, describe types of government, and learn the basic ideas of American democracy.
Unit 2: Constitutional Underpinnings
Students learn about the Enlightenment, the ideas of John Locke and Thomas Jefferson, the American Revolution, and the Constitutional Convention. They compare and contrast the views of the Federalists and Anti-Federalists, discuss the five major principles of the Constitution, and learn about the Bill of Rights and other important amendments.
Unit 3: Institutions of Government
Students learn about the basic structure of the U.S. government, and the purpose and functions of Congress, the presidency, bureaucracy, and the federal court system. They study the significance of Marbury v. Madison and learn the steps the Supreme Court follows in selecting, hearing, and deciding cases.
Unit 4: Political Beliefs and Behaviors
Students learn about the expansion of suffrage in the United States, opportunities for citizen participation in the political process, and demographic factors that influence political participation and political attitudes. They are introduced to the two-axis model of the political spectrum and study the development of liberal and conservative positions in the United States. They learn about the history of opinion polling and the methods used to measure public opinion.
Unit 5: Linkage Institutions
Students learn about the two-party system, the history of political parties in America, and the role of the media in American elections. They study the process by which presidents are elected, how interest groups and lobbyists work, how the media can affect political agenda, and the evolution of the press in the United States.
Unit 6: The Art of Policymaking
Students learn about policymaking and economic, social, and foreign policies of the United States. They learn about the typical issues addressed, and the powers of state and local government.
Unit 7: Civil Liberties and Civil Rights
Students learn about individual rights and liberties found in the Bill of Rights. They look at how the establishment clause and the free exercise clause have been interpreted to protect freedom of religion, trace the ever-evolving interpretation of freedom of speech, and learn about freedom of the press, assembly, petition, and the right to privacy. They study major steps in the fight for equality for African Americans, women, and other minority groups.
Unit 8: U.S. Government and Politics Semester Review and Test
Students review what they have learned and take the test.