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What A-levels do you need to study politics?

Good news! You don’t actually need an A-level in politics to study it at uni. But what subjects could swing an admissions tutor's vote in your favour?

Skip ahead to: Politics is a popular degree that is normally open to you with any A-levels. However, certain A-level choices will help to prepare you for studying politics at degree level.


A-level subjects for politics 

What A-level subjects are needed or essential for politics?  

None! Politics is a popular degree that is normally open to you with any A-levels. However, certain A-level choices will help to prepare you for studying politics at degree level.

What A-levels are useful for politics 

  • politics
  • history
  • philosophy
  • law
  • sociology

Other typical A-levels taken by politics students

  • maths
  • English literature
  • general studies

Take a look at individual politics courses on The Uni Guide to find out the most popular subjects students studied before attending, the entry requirements they ask for and lots more.

Note that many degrees will be open to you whichever A-levels you choose. Some courses will be happy with a subject just at AS-level, while some courses may want the full A-level it's worth checking before you finalise your A-level choices in Year 12.

Mix and match different A-level subjects to see where they'll lead, try our A-level Explorer tool


Which universities do students rate for their political scene?

University is often the place where people more involved in politics, or at least develop a greater awareness of particular issues; this may come about from joining political societies and groups, or simply interacting with lots of students from different backgrounds.

See which universities students rated top for their political scene in our annual student survey.


Examples of politics degree requirements

Below are a few Politics BA courses offered by different universities and the A-level entry requirements they ask for (as of 11 April 2018):

Queen's University Belfast: ‘A,B,B. A-level General Studies and Critical Thinking are normally excluded from offers. However, the grade achieved may be taken into account when results are published in August and may be used in a tie-break situation.’

Durham University: 'A,A,A. General information on subjects/grades required for entry: A in at least one Social Sciences or Humanities subject. Specific subjects excluded for entry: General Studies and Critical Thinking. Information: Applicants taking Science A-levels that include a practical component will be required to take and pass this as a condition of entry. This refers only to English A Levels.'

University of Brighton: 'B,B,C-C,C,C.’


Other similar degree subjects

Even similar subjects may have slightly different A-level requirements to politics, so if you want to keep your degree options open, be sure to check the entry requirements of specific courses before you finalise your choices.

Watch now: How to choose your A-levels

Where could your A-levels take you?

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