Politics is now one of the largest departments in the College with over 120 pupils choosing to take it at A level.

Few academic subjects can claim to be so central to our understanding of everyday life and by choosing to study it, pupils will find out how and why politics dominates domestic and international news as well as how political decision-making affects so many facets of our lives.



The Government and Politics syllabus follows the Edexcel exam board and since September 2017, we have been teaching the ‘new’ linear specification which has three parts.

Components One and Two focus on British Politics and Component Three on Global issues.

Component One focuses on UK Politics and Core Political Ideas and introduces pupils to the key elements of communication between the government and the people in Britain encouraging them to evaluate the adequacy of existing arrangements for ensuring representative democracy and participation. Its key topics include Democracy and Participation, Political Parties, Electoral Systems, Voting Behaviour and the Media. For the Core Political Ideas we study Liberalism, Conservatism and Socialism. In Component Two, we look at the major UK governmental processes in the UK and pupils are encouraged to develop a critical understanding of the role and effectiveness of key institutions and the relationship amongst them within the context of multilevel governance. Key topics are the Constitution, Parliament, Prime Minister, the Executive, and the relationship between the branches. For the Optional Political Idea we will be studying Feminism.

In Component Three, we examine key issues in recent global politics and how these issues are dealt with at global level. This includes Theories of Global Politics, sovereignty and globalisation, global governance: political and economic, global governance: human rights and the environment, power and developments, regionalism and the European Union. Many pupils from Marlborough have opted to study for a Politics and/or International Relations degree courses which open up diverse careers including journalism, business, the armed forces and the civil service.



There are a range of options available for extending political interest and knowledge outside of normal lesson time. The vibrant Politics Society hosts talks from eminent public figures and political commentators and gives pupils an insight into the realities of the wider political world.

Mock elections are held at the time of General Election. The Politics Society also hosts a wide range of more informal activities, from informal debates to book reviews. The department offers visits to places of interest such as Parliament and the Supreme Court, and every year there is a study trip to either Washington DC, Brussels, Luxembourg, Strasbourg, Geneva, or Berlin.


M A Gow BA (Head of Department)
C L Harrison BSc
R Willmett BA
WJ Molyneux BA