How to write a gov/pol essay

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1. In the introduction you need to define the key term of the question, for example, one on pressure groups may focus on the success of one over another, or perhaps the 2015 curveball Orwell 'All pressure groups are equal but some are more equal than others'. Don't be thrown, its simple asking you to pick out the question that is why are some pressure groups more successful than others but link it to the fact the UK is a pluralist democracy. 

2. Examples, examples, examples. The most important thing in Gov/Pol is having a lot of examples and names. As long as they fit the context, they will get you marks. Name drop as much as possible, an MP or a Senator in a relevant committee or quote. Pressure groups are the easiest to do this for, especially in the US because they are so numerous and diverse. Learn this detail and you'll get the marks.

3. Keep the essay relatively clipped and short, you only have 30(ish) minutes in an AQA exam. 3 main paragraphs are enough, always sign post the topic of the paragraph in the first sentance, then give detail with a lot of examples, i tried to have 5 examples every paragraph. An essay should look 1 1/2-2 pages of A4. 

Conclusion- reiterate your best point and actually draw the essay to a close by giving a definitive answer to the question. Don't add more detail here unless you have a sudden epiphany.

Tobias B. A Level Government and Politics tutor

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