AP US Government and Politics

Unit 2: Interactions Among Branches of Government

Unit 3: Civil Liberties and Civil Rights

Unit 4: American Political Ideologies and Beliefs

Unit 5: Political Participation

BIG IDEA 1: CONSTITUTIONALISM The U.S. Constitution establishes a system of checks and balances among branches of government and allocates power between federal and state governments. This system is based on the rule of law and the balance between majority rule and minority rights.

BIG IDEA 2: LIBERTY AND ORDER Governmental laws and policies balancing order and liberty are based on the U.S. Constitution and have been interpreted differently over time.

BIG IDEA 3: CIVIC PARTICIPATION IN A REPRESENTATIVE DEMOCRACY Popular sovereignty, individualism, and republicanism are important considerations of U.S. laws and policymaking and assume citizens will engage and participate.

BIG IDEA 4: COMPETING POLICY-MAKING INTERESTS Multiple actors and institutions interact to produce and implement possible policies.

BIG IDEA 5: METHODS OF POLITICAL ANALYSIS Using various types of analyses, political scientists measure how U.S. political behavior, attitudes, ideologies, and institutions are shaped by a number of factors over time