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AP UNITED STATES GOVERNMENT AND POLITICS

SYLLABUS: C (American Government: Continuity and Change.)

INTRODUCTION:
Advanced Placement (AP) curriculum is designed to give students an analytical perspective on government and politics in the United States. Students will study both general concepts used to interpret U.S. politics and examine specific examples. The AP Government course requires students to learn facts and concepts and understand typical political processes. The course will require students to master historical and analytic skills, including; chronological and spatial thinking, historical research and interpretation. Students will evaluate viewpoints presented through major print and electronic media, understand statistical data and analyze trends related to significant political events. Emphasis is placed on applying problem-solving and critical-thinking skills, interpreting graphs and tables, organizing information, evaluating information, and communicating orally and in writing. The course aims to help the student to participate effectively and democratically in the American political society

COURSE OBJECTIVES:
This course explores the political theory and everyday practice that direct the daily operation of our government and shape our public policies. The express purpose of this course is to prepare students to take the AP Exam for U.S Government and Politics. The course is for all intents and purposes taught on a college level and it requires a substantial amount of reading and preparation for every class. The objectives of this course go beyond a basic analysis of how our government “works.” Students will develop a critical understanding of the strengths and weaknesses of the American political system, as well as their rights and responsibilities as citizens. In addition to described content, the course will also work to refine important skills. They include analyzing data and writing and presenting written and oral arguments. In order to help students master the ability to write a good political science essay the course will concentrate on the instruction of several essential skills: • Effective writing style

• The ability to make arguments
• The ability to evaluate critically and to compare scholarly works • The ability to synthesize political science data
• The ability analyze, interpret, and respond to stimulus-based data including charts, graphs, cartoons, and quotes The course will cover a large amount of content. The study of American Government is both historical and contemporary. Therefore, it is essential that students remain aware of what is happening in the world. It is suggested that regular reading of newspapers and news magazines as well as the regular viewing of news broadcasts be maintained throughout the course.

COURSE STANDARDS:

1. Students explain the fundamental principles and moral values of American democracy as expressed in the U.S. Constitution and other essential documents of American democracy. 2. Students evaluate the scope and limits of civil rights and obligations as democratic citizens, the relationships among them, and how they are secured. 3. Students evaluate the fundamental values and principles of civil society (i.e., the autonomous sphere of voluntary personal, social, and economic relations that are not part of government), their interdependence, and the meaning and importance of those values and principles for a free society. 4. Students analyze the unique roles and responsibilities of the three branches of government as established by the U.S. Constitution. 5. Students summarize landmark U.S. Supreme Court interpretations of the Constitution and its amendments. 6. Students evaluate issues regarding national, state and local elective offices. 7. Students analyze and compare the powers and procedures of the national, state, and local governments. 8. Students evaluate the influence of the media...
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