John Trumbull's painting of the Declaration of Independence
John Trumbull's painting of the Declaration of Independence

Go here for AP Government and Politics Course Description

I. Constitutional Understandings of United States Government

A. Considerations that influenced the formulation and adoption of the Constitution
B. Separation of Powers
C. Checks and Balances
D. Federalism
E. Theories of democratic government


II. Political Beliefs and Behaviors

A. Beliefs that citizens hold about their government and its leaders
B. Processes by which citizens learn about politics
C. The nature and sources of public opinion
D. The ways in which citizens vote and participate in political life
E. Factors that influence citizens to differ from one another in terms of political beliefs and behaviors

Parade of suffragettes in New York in 1912.
Parade of suffragettes in New York in 1912.

III. Political Parties, Interest Groups, and Mass Media

A. Political parties and elections
B. Interest groups, including political action committees (PACs)
C. The mass media


IV. Institutions of National Government: The Congress, the Presidency, the Bureaucracy, and the Federal Courts

A. The major formal and informal institutional arrangements of power
B. Relationships among these four institutions and varying balances of power
C. Linkages between institutions


V. Public Policy

A. Policymaking in the federal system
B. The formation of policy agendas
C. The role of institutions in the enactment of policy
D. The role of the bureaucracy and the courts in policy implementation and interpretation
E. Linkages between policy processes


12th entry on Mississippi Freedom Trail. Photo by Ron Cogswell
12th entry on Mississippi Freedom Trail. Photo by Ron Cogswell


VI. Civil Rights and Civil Liberties

A. The development of civil liberties and civil rights by judicial interpretation
B. Knowledge of substantive rights and liberties
C. The impact of the fourteenth amendment on the constitutional development of rights and liberties







Teaching and Learning Resources


external image Beautiful_red_apple.jpgUniversity of Nebraska-Omaha, GovEdWeb Lesson Plans

external image 200px-Dollar_Sign.svg.pngInteractive Look at President Obama's 2013 Budget

THOMAS. This resource tracks legislation as it is proposed and passed through Congress

primary_sources.PNGPresidential Approval Ratings from Truman to Present. Gallup Polls.

Test_hq3x.pngPractice Tests and Quizzes for the AP Exam