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GCSE Government and Politics

Unit 1 - Democracy in Action

Table Key: Activity   Watch  Read

Decision making

Decision making in a democracy

Content Elaboration NIA Education Service Resources

‘Layers’ of government

Layers of Government Interactive game

Elections to the four levels of government and importance of voting

Role of MLAs:

Representation role

Interactive constituency map & election results and performance

Interactive game - ‘Week in the life’

Interactive game - ‘Constituency Time’ challenge

Professors Rick Wilford and Cathy Gormley-Heenan give their assessments of the performance of the Assembly (series of video interviews from June 2016)

Representation explained animation

Visit to Northern Ireland Assembly through its Education Service - opportunity to meet with MLAs

Legislative role

How laws are made in the Northern Ireland Assembly

Interactive game – Making a Law

(from 2015 Archive) How bills are passed in the Northern Ireland Assembly

Legislative role of an MLA and examples of recent bills

Professors Rick Wilford and Cathy Gormley-Heenan give their assessments of the performance of the Assembly (series of video interviews from June 2016)

To watch a debate live:
www.niassembly.gov.uk
www.bbc.co.uk/democracylive

Scrutiny role

How the Assembly scrutinises the Executive i.e. opposition, committees, questions and debates

Interactive game -Take the’ Question Time’ challenge

Professors Rick Wilford and Cathy Gormley-Heenan give their assessments of the performance of the Assembly (series of video interviews from June 2016)

Scrutiny explained animation

Voting

How MLAs vote in the Assembly chamber and cross community voting

A video (from our archive) showing how MLAs vote in the Assembly chamber

Voting in the Chamber explained animation

Private Member’s Bills

How laws are made in the Northern Ireland Assembly

Legislation passed in the 2011-16 mandate with details of Private Member’s Bills

Opposition

Official Opposition

Professors Rick Wilford and Cathy Gormley-Heenan examine the prospects for a successful opposition (Video interview 2016)

Scrutiny explained animation

Question Time

Questions i.e. written/ oral and the role of the Speaker in Question Time

Interactive game - Take the Question Time challenge

Watch clips of previous Question Times:
Assembly’s YouTube channel
niassembly.tv/categories/question-time

From this page you can access information regarding Assembly questions which have been submitted for either written or oral answer

Committees

How committees work:
Part 1
Part 2

Information on the different types of Committees in the Northern Ireland Assembly

Information can be accessed here on current Assembly Committees and their work

Elections and voting

Elections and voting in a democracy

Content Elaboration NIA Education Service Resources

How MLAs and MPs in Northern Ireland are elected and the pros and cons of each of these electoral systems.

Introductory video on importance of voting

Video on UK Parliament elections and the role of MPs

Race to Stormont - what happens before, during and after an Assembly election

Animation explaining what happens when an Assembly election is called

Different ways to choose your elected representatives in a democracy

Proportional representation and STV

Animation explaining how STV works

Counting votes in an STV election

Professors Rick Wilford and Cathy Gormley-Heenan look at the 2016 Assembly election results and ask what this reveals about the state of democracy in Northern Ireland (video)

Links to research papers on election results

UK Parliament- interactive resources explaining elections and voting

UK Parliament - ‘Election Toolkit’ resource

UK Parliament interactive whiteboard resource explaining and comparing voting systems

Voting trends

This research paper, produced by the Assembly’s Research and Information Service (RaISE), provides an analysis of the Assembly election held on 2 March 2017. The paper also includes an analysis of voter turnout and results by party and constituency.

This research paper, produced by the Assembly’s Research and Information Service (RaISE), provides an analysis of the Westminster General Election held on 8 June 2017, and compares the outcome with the 2015 election. The paper also includes an analysis of voter turnout and results by party and constituency.

Performance of the 5 main parties from 1998 to 2016

Political parties

Political parties in a democracy

Content Elaboration NIA Education Service Resources

The policies of the five largest political parties in Northern Ireland – including similarities and differences on the major issues of:

  • the economy
  • education
  • the environment
  • immigration

Interviews with political parties can be found in the video gallery. Politicians explain what their party stands for and discuss their views on the issues affecting young people e.g. education, student fees, votes at 16

Visit to Northern Ireland Assembly through its Education Service – opportunity to meet with MLAs

Taking action

Taking action in a democracy

Content Elaboration NIA Education Service Resources

The range of actions a citizen can take to achieve their aims and hold the powerful in society to account

Video resource on elections to the four levels of government and importance of voting

Visit to Northern Ireland Assembly through its Education Service – opportunity to meet with MLAs