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What is Taught in a Citizenship Course?

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  • Written By: Nicole Long
  • Edited By: Allegra J. Lingo
  • Last Modified Date: 08 November 2016
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A citizenship course provides the necessary information for becoming a citizen of a country. For current citizens, a citizenship course can reinforce previously learned knowledge and provide a basis for continuing study. Citizenship courses focus on the government, history, economy, and overall culture of the country being studied.

Essential to learning about the formation of a nation and government are those documents that provide the guidance for laws, regulations, and rights. In the United States, this would include learning about the Constitution, the Bill of Rights, and the Declaration of Independence. These documents outline rights for citizens, such as the right to free speech and the right to bear arms, and also give politicians and government officials guidance on enacting new laws.

Learning about the government of a nation provides students with information on their basic rights and responsibilities as a citizen. Topics include the type of government and how to participate in the political process. For instance, in the United States this would include information on representative democracy and voting rights of each citizen.

A citizenship course also covers the various levels of government which make up the national system of government. This includes how representatives are chosen and the powers they have once they take office. Information provided during a citizenship course details the expectations of each position, such as President, any requirements necessary to attain the positions, and any term limits associated with that particular office.

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The history of a nation is important for those studying citizenship. This includes learning about the key people and events that have occurred throughout the history of the nation. Also included in learning about the history of a nation is the relationship between nations within the global community.

Another part of studying citizenship includes learning about the various economic principles of the nation. In the United States, this can include information on the capitalist economy, or what drives a particular economy. For instance, a capitalist economy allows producers to make decisions on production while consumers make decisions on what to purchase and how to spend their money. The economy seeks to balance these needs within such an economic system, often referred to as a market economy.

The various laws of the country are also covered in a citizenship course. This can include laws related to common criminal activities and the punishments related to infractions. Citizenship courses also may teach students about the various levels of law enforcement within a nation.

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