Edexcel A2 Politics - Political Ideologies and Other Ideological Traditions

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257532
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Hi I was wondering how many others were doing these exams? (don't think it can be that many.) I thought maybe we could use this thread secifically to discuss the exams/ask any questions/ share revision. I hope I haven't overlooked a thread if there's already one of these! I've already done the Political Ideologies exam in Jan and am beginning to prepare for the second one now. Just wondering if anyone else here is in the same boat.
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Izzie Rose
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Heya! Glad to meet another victim lol! To be fair, Politics has been ok (I had a really bad experience with Edexcel AS Drama...) how are you finding it?
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(Original post by Izzie Rose)
Heya! Glad to meet another victim lol! To be fair, Politics has been ok (I had a really bad experience with Edexcel AS Drama...) how are you finding it?
Hi. That was quick! I actually really like it and have found the A2 a lot more interesting that Politics AS. I'm a bit worried about the second exam though, it seems a bit harder to get to grips with than the Political Ideologies one. What about you?
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politicallyconfused
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eurgh, i'm worried about unit 4 =[
15 markers are fine, but the 45 mark ones for unit 4 completely throw me.

OP, how did you do in unit 3?

the whole thing is pretty daunting
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Izzie Rose
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"eurgh, i'm worried about unit 4 =[
15 markers are fine, but the 45 mark ones for unit 4 completely throw me."

Totally agree with you there! I never feel I have enough to say!
OP - I deffo find the A2 stuff more interesting than the AS, which is strange because last year I would have expected the opposite! I guess I'm just nosey and love finding out how people think
Which topics do you guys like best?
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politicallyconfused
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anarchism
probably the best one for me!
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257532
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I did ok in unit 3 and got an A which was pretty unexpected as I really thought I'd answered the essay question completely wrong! I'd like to try for an A* but i'm not sure how realistic it is - just relies on unit 4 now I guess and i definitely feel a bit daunted by it too. What about you two?

I actually liked all of the unit 3 topics and we're doing ecologism right now which took a while to get into but I think it's actually quite interesting. Have you done multiculturalism yet? I think that topic looks interesting too but we haven't started it yet.
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dannytee
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hi, i'm doing these exams aswell
But taking both unit 3 and 4 in the summer.
Can you remember the questions asked in Jan - that would help with a bit of revision.
Thanks
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257532
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(Original post by dannytee)
hi, i'm doing these exams aswell
But taking both unit 3 and 4 in the summer.
Can you remember the questions asked in Jan - that would help with a bit of revision.
Thanks
Hiya

I posted these in another thread but I think it would be good to post them here too.

The 15 mark questions were:

1. On what grounds have liberals defended democracy?
2. Explain the link between anarchism and collectivism.
3. Why have democratic socialists believed in the "inevitability of gradualism"?
4. To what extent do traditional conservative and New Right views of society differ?
5. Why have anarchists viewed the state as inherently evil and oppressive?


And the essay questions were:

6. "Conservatism favours pragmatism over principle." Discuss.
7. To what extent does modern liberalism depart from the ideas of classical liberalism?
8. "Socialism is defined by its opposition to capitalism". Discuss.


The unit four paper was sat too.

Questions were:
1.What is patriarchy, and why is this important in feminist analysis?
2. How have ecologists revised conventional ethical thought?
3. How and why have multiculturalists supported minority rights?
4. Explain the ideas of eco-socialism.
5. Distinguish between nationalism and racialism.

6.To what extent is there tension between multiculturalism and liberalism?
7. ‘Nationalism looks to the past, not to the future.’ Discuss.
8. To what extent is feminism compatible with other political ideologies?
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vikkisnedker
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Hi,
Im having trouble with these units!
Last year got a 92% average. this year in unit 3 ended up with a U! and am getting A's in history and geography.
it is so unlike me.
I just cant get the hang of it.
Has anyone got any revision notes for either that they would be willing to share i just can't get to grips with understanding!

In need of help!
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257532
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(Original post by vikkisnedker)
Hi,
Im having trouble with these units!
Last year got a 92% average. this year in unit 3 ended up with a U! and am getting A's in history and geography.
it is so unlike me.
I just cant get the hang of it.
Has anyone got any revision notes for either that they would be willing to share i just can't get to grips with understanding!

In need of help!
That does sound a bit odd. Did you do a mock before the exam? I'm just wondering if it's the exam technique which you weren't sure of, or did you really not get the actual content? Because personally, I did find the exam quite a change from the type of exam we had last year. But having said that, I am struggling with some of the ideologies too!! - especially in unit 4
I'm sorry I don't have any notes to offer you though, do you have a good textbook though?
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vikkisnedker
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(Original post by 257532)
That does sound a bit odd. Did you do a mock before the exam? I'm just wondering if it's the exam technique which you weren't sure of, or did you really not get the actual content? Because personally, I did find the exam quite a change from the type of exam we had last year. But having said that, I am struggling with some of the ideologies too!! - especially in unit 4
I'm sorry I don't have any notes to offer you though, do you have a good textbook though?
Hi, we have been through exam technique since the exam and this has meant i am now getting 8/15 where as before it was more like 4! so I think that had something to do with it. But the content is what im struggling with, things that don't go in tables i do find quite difficult. Its how everything interlinks and the long words which i'm struggling with us. We're using Andrew Heywoods Political Ideologies and introduction. But i also have McNaughton at home which i find a little easier. I find the book quite difficult to read as things are over complicated quite alot! Unit 4 is meant to be easier but I know what you mean, I think it is a lot easier for those people who didnt struggle with Unit 3 as quite a lot of the stuff links in particularly the 45 markers.
Do you have any good tips for the exam? I want to do this at uni, and my first choice is York so I really cant afford anything lower than a B
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257532
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(Original post by vikkisnedker)
Hi, we have been through exam technique since the exam and this has meant i am now getting 8/15 where as before it was more like 4! so I think that had something to do with it. But the content is what im struggling with, things that don't go in tables i do find quite difficult. Its how everything interlinks and the long words which i'm struggling with us. We're using Andrew Heywoods Political Ideologies and introduction. But i also have McNaughton at home which i find a little easier. I find the book quite difficult to read as things are over complicated quite alot! Unit 4 is meant to be easier but I know what you mean, I think it is a lot easier for those people who didnt struggle with Unit 3 as quite a lot of the stuff links in particularly the 45 markers.
Do you have any good tips for the exam? I want to do this at uni, and my first choice is York so I really cant afford anything lower than a B
I'm using the McNaughton book and I agree - it's so wordy and sometimes difficult to find the actual point of the paragraph or sentence! If it's easier than the book you use in class, I really feel for you! Because when I try to condense it into notes I just end up writing the whole page out again :o:
I don't think I have any tips but I did find this book useful http://www.amazon.co.uk/Government-P...3138587&sr=8-1. It's not as detailed as the textbook obviously but is helpful for revision and explains the key points quite well. It has graded answers too and comments, which was helpful to me.

I haven't really made my notes into revisable chunks yet but I do find it daunting when it's just pages and pages of notes. Maybe you could use tables to compare the different variants of each ideology, an I think I'll try and do spider diagrams for the core values. There's still a lot which I don't think will fit into diagrams/tables but I bet we can think of some more, and it's a start anyway.
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rainbowworld
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Hey everyone,
I'm doing this too. I'm finding this year really hard. Interesting still, but hard, especially the 45 markers.
I messed up unit 3 in January so I am retaking. I am also retaking unit 1. So I have 3 politics exams this may/june!
There's just so much to learn and our lessons are not really helpful, we never learn anything so I just have my notes our teacher makes for us and some random Political Ideologies book our teacher gave us. For my unit 1 I have Andrew Heywoods book + notes.
I'm rubbish at answering the 45 mark questions I wrote more for the 15mk ones in January
And I want to do politics at University! So need an A/B really.
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257532
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(Original post by rainbowworld)
Hey everyone,
I'm doing this too. I'm finding this year really hard. Interesting still, but hard, especially the 45 markers.
I messed up unit 3 in January so I am retaking. I am also retaking unit 1. So I have 3 politics exams this may/june!
There's just so much to learn and our lessons are not really helpful, we never learn anything so I just have my notes our teacher makes for us and some random Political Ideologies book our teacher gave us. For my unit 1 I have Andrew Heywoods book + notes.
I'm rubbish at answering the 45 mark questions I wrote more for the 15mk ones in January
And I want to do politics at University! So need an A/B really.
Hey rainbowworld,
Thare really is a lot to learn and my politics lessons are also useless so I can sympathise there!
I'm the other way around, I really like the 45 markers as I can get into it, whereas I'm less sure what/how much to put in the 15 mark questions. But I really think that'll improve with practice. Did you do a mock before your Jan exam or get much useful feedback from your teacher?
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vikkisnedker
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(Original post by rainbowworld)
Hey everyone,
I'm doing this too. I'm finding this year really hard. Interesting still, but hard, especially the 45 markers.
I messed up unit 3 in January so I am retaking. I am also retaking unit 1. So I have 3 politics exams this may/june!
There's just so much to learn and our lessons are not really helpful, we never learn anything so I just have my notes our teacher makes for us and some random Political Ideologies book our teacher gave us. For my unit 1 I have Andrew Heywoods book + notes.
I'm rubbish at answering the 45 mark questions I wrote more for the 15mk ones in January
And I want to do politics at University! So need an A/B really.
Hey what university have you chosen?
We are in the exact same position, I am much better at the 15 markers than the 45's! I think there is not only a lot to learn but a need to understand as well. Whereas unit 1/2 were much more about learning facts and how the system works rather than understanding what makes up the ideologies, the hardest thing with the ideologies I have found is that they're not actually there (I hope i'm making sense!) as it's all just theory, and the ridiculous way both McNaughton and Heywood have to say everything eg. not inconsiderable, wouldn't it be much easier to just say considerable? Hehe!
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vikkisnedker
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(Original post by 257532)
I'm using the McNaughton book and I agree - it's so wordy and sometimes difficult to find the actual point of the paragraph or sentence! If it's easier than the book you use in class, I really feel for you! Because when I try to condense it into notes I just end up writing the whole page out again :o:
I don't think I have any tips but I did find this book useful http://www.amazon.co.uk/Government-P...3138587&sr=8-1. It's not as detailed as the textbook obviously but is helpful for revision and explains the key points quite well. It has graded answers too and comments, which was helpful to me.

I haven't really made my notes into revisable chunks yet but I do find it daunting when it's just pages and pages of notes. Maybe you could use tables to compare the different variants of each ideology, an I think I'll try and do spider diagrams for the core values. There's still a lot which I don't think will fit into diagrams/tables but I bet we can think of some more, and it's a start anyway.
Agreed, i've done some tables and spider diagrams. The only thing I find is everything's very linked in so this can get confusing with spider diagrams and with tables it doesn't really allow too much room for linking things in. Although both are good for summary, and just going over core beliefs.
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257532
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(Original post by vikkisnedker)
Agreed, i've done some tables and spider diagrams. The only thing I find is everything's very linked in so this can get confusing with spider diagrams and with tables it doesn't really allow too much room for linking things in. Although both are good for summary, and just going over core beliefs.
Isn't that the same for history though? Like I use the odd table and spider diagram for history but really just keep on reading over my notes, I find there's just too much information for things like diagrams. Just re-reading notes is how I revised for unit 3 too but I guess that isn't very helpful to you, sorry! I also found (and this is just me) that all the little details that I had revised weren't that useful in the exam, it was more understanding the key concepts and it's easy to get bogged down by some of the stuff in the book. I'm sure quite a bit of it isn't relevant.
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rainbowworld
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(Original post by 257532)
Hey rainbowworld,
Thare really is a lot to learn and my politics lessons are also useless so I can sympathise there!
I'm the other way around, I really like the 45 markers as I can get into it, whereas I'm less sure what/how much to put in the 15 mark questions. But I really think that'll improve with practice. Did you do a mock before your Jan exam or get much useful feedback from your teacher?
Yeah the 45 markers are good in that respect but I just can't think of enough to write and I don't really know how much is enough etc.
Yeah we do mock questions and get some feed back but the actual questions in the exam are always different and my revision for the Jan exam was pretty rubiish so i'm hoping with alot more I can do better this time. Good luck with your 15 markers, I think practise is the key!
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rainbowworld
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(Original post by vikkisnedker)
Hey what university have you chosen?
We are in the exact same position, I am much better at the 15 markers than the 45's! I think there is not only a lot to learn but a need to understand as well. Whereas unit 1/2 were much more about learning facts and how the system works rather than understanding what makes up the ideologies, the hardest thing with the ideologies I have found is that they're not actually there (I hope i'm making sense!) as it's all just theory, and the ridiculous way both McNaughton and Heywood have to say everything eg. not inconsiderable, wouldn't it be much easier to just say considerable? Hehe!
Well Nottingham as my firm Msci. International Relations and global issues and Bath as my insurace Bsc. Social sciences. So not exactly pure politics but politics would be one of the main aspects of either course and I want to mainly do politics. What about you? Have you applied to do Politics?
Yeah thats the problem, I think yopu need to understand it well to link it all together and answer questions fully.
Yeah I find the fact that they are theory hard and the fact you can't talk about the Conservative party when you are doing conservatism etc. It seems really weird as that seems the right thing to do.
Haha yeah, the books all seems pretty dry. I miss the good old days of pretty colourful GCSE revision guides! :p:
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