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KS4 Citizenship

Course Outline

The teaching promotes human rights and social cohesion; by equipping young people with important knowledge and skills related to equality and human rights. Subject contents provide an opportunity for pupils to address contemporary and moral issues with an influence of ideas such as democracy, rule of law and privilege on equal/unequal citizenship.

GCSE: Year 11
Theme: Active citizenship

Active citizenship is developed around the overarching principle of how citizens can try to make a difference in society. Whilst the three content-based themes enable students to develop their citizenship knowledge base, the last section of the topic involves students conducting an investigation to explore social issue and how they can make a difference.

Theme: 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.

Theme: Life in modern Britain

This topic is split into 6 different themes (such as, Identity, democracy free press and International organisations). Students will look at 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.

Theme: Rights and Responsibilities

In this topic students will 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 topic also considers how the citizen can both play a part and bring about change within the legal system.

Citizenship: AQA Unit Award Scheme

The Unit Award Scheme will be offered to our non GCSE students, with the opportunity to have their achievements formally recognised with a certificate issued by AQA each time a short unit is successfully completed.  It provides a wide range of units which are differentiated, making accreditation accessible to all pupils regardless of their ability.


Class 4 and 5
Class 6

Autumn 1

Topic 1:

Introduction to Citizenship

Topic 2:

Human Rights

Topic 1: Citizenship Skills, Processes and Methods

Autumn 2

Topic 1:

Rights & Liberties:

When Human Rights are Denied

Topic 2:

Promoting Wellbeing and Raising Awareness

Topic 2: Life in Modern Britain


Spring 1

Topic 1:

Crime and Punishment

Judicial  System

Topic 2:

Power and Politics

Topic 3: Rights and Responsibilities

Spring 2

Topic 1:

The Media

Topic 2:

Global Issues

Topic 4: Politics and Participation

Summer 1

Life-Skill Unit 1:

Finances: Learning to Budget

Topic 5: Active Citizenship

Summer 2

Life-skills unit 2:


Prevention: Child Sexual Exploitation, FGM and Radicalisation


How the course is assessed and Feedback

The exams will measure how students have achieved the following assessment objectives:

AO1: Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of citizenship concepts, terms, and issues.

AO2: Apply knowledge and understanding of citizenship concepts, terms and issues to contexts and actions.

AO3: Analyse and evaluate a range of evidence relating to citizenship issues, debates and actions, including different viewpoints, to develop reasoned, coherent arguments and make substantiated judgements.

Paper 1: Written exam:  1hr 45min. 50% of GCSE

Section A: Active Citizenship

Section B: Politics and Participation

In Paper 1 of the exam students are required to undertake an investigation of a social issue of their choice of social issue and how they can make a difference.  Paper 1 of the exam will require the students to draw upon their experiences from their investigation.

Paper 2: Written exam:  1hr 45min. 50% of GCSE

Section A: Life in modern Britain

Section B: Rights and Responsibilities

Student weekly outcome sheet:
  • Differentiated target based questions
  • Target setting
  • Weekly learning objectives  
Student curriculum map:
  • Units and topics
  • Success criteria
Non GCSE: Year 10

AQA Unit Award Scheme:

  • Unit 1: Level 1 Certificate
  • Unit 2: Level 2 Certificate
  • Unit 3: Level 3 Certificate

Pupils that are resilient, capable and hard-working can be considered for the Citizenship GCSE exams.

Student weekly outcome sheet:
  • Differentiated target based questions
  • Target setting
  • Weekly learning objectives  
Student curriculum map:
  • Units and topics
  • Success criteria
How parents/carers can help

To further develop and broaden your child’s skills and understanding of Citizenship concepts, you should encourage your child to spend 40 minutes per week doing independent reading ( This could be a newspaper) and going over the notes covered in class.

Encourage your child to watch the News; to ensure that he/she is up to date with social matters.

Test their knowledge and understanding by encouraging them to inform you on their learning, targets and lesson objectives.

Due to GCSE Preparation each year 11 student has six booklets. One for each of the units we are covering in class. There are plenty of activities that can be completed using these booklets.

Please encourage your child to do the following, 3 days a week:

  • Answering the examination questions
  • Checking the understanding of all the key topics
  • Completing the activity sections and using the exam sections to improve exam technique.
Links to online resources:
1. Citizenship and Active Citizenship:

2. General support and Advice:

3. Drugs:

Year 11:

To use unit booklet to help prepare for the exam; completing the activity sections and using the exam sections to improve exam technique.