AP Gov 2020-2021
AP United States Government and Politics is a college level course offered to students who wish to be academically challenged and plan to take the AP exam in the spring. It is a survey course that provides an introduction of American national government. The overall goal is to foster the development of analytical perspectives for interpreting, understanding, and explaining the political processes and events in this country. We will follow these themes throughout the course:
BIG IDEA 1: CONSTITUTIONALISM The U.S. Constitution establishes a system of checks and balances among branches of government and allocates power between federal and state governments. This system is based on the rule of law and the balance between majority rule and minority rights.
BIG IDEA 2: LIBERTY & ORDER Governmental laws and policies balancing order and liberty are based on the U.S. Constitution and have been interpreted differently over time.
BIG IDEA 3: CIVIC PARTICIPATION IN A REPRESENTATIVE DEMOCRACY Popular sovereignty, individualism, and republicanism are important considerations of U.S. laws and policy making and assume citizens will engage and participate.
BIG IDEA 4: COMPETING POLICY-MAKING INTERESTS Multiple actors and institutions interact to produce and implement possible policies.
BIG IDEA 5: METHODS OF POLITICAL ANALYSIS Using various types of analyses, political scientists measure how U.S. political behavior, attitudes, ideologies, and institutions are shaped by a number of factors over time.