Course Overview

Government affects all of our lives. And we have much more power over that government than most people realize. This course is designed to help you better understand that power, how to use it, the rights we have and how to protect them, and how to participate in our system of government.

SEMESTER I

Unit I: Understanding Our Rights—we will begin the year learning about the rights guaranteed by the Constitution and the balance between protecting rights of the individual with the security and safety of the public. 

Unit II: Understanding Our Politics—the American political landscape is highly polarized between a liberal/progressive ideology and a conservative ideology. In this unit we will understand how we got to this point, and work to understand shared American values and policy disputes. 

Unit 2b: Understanding Our Economy—in unit 2b we will fold in essential economic concepts to better understand how our economy operates. 

The first semester final will include Unit I, II, and 2b.

SEMESTER II

Unit III: Understanding Our Government—We will begin the second semester studying the type of government created by the authors of the Constitution and work toward an understanding of how this government was designed to work vs. how it operates today and the challenges we face in preserving this government for our future—as well as future generations. 

Unit IV: Understanding How We Participate—We will wrap up this course by working to understand how we—the residents and subjects of this government—participate. 

The End of Course exam will cover all units/content from both semesters and will take place prior to the AP national exam. 

Unit IV: Understanding How We Participate

5.1—Voting Rights & Models of Voting Behavior

5.2—Voter Turnout

5.3—Political Parties

5.4—How & Why Political Parties Change & Adapt

5.5—Third-Party Politics

5.6—Interest Groups Influencing Policy Making

5.7—Groups Influencing Policy Outcomes

5.8—Electing a President

5.9—Congressional Elections

5.10—Modern Campaigns