About This Chapter
Who's It For?
Anyone who needs help learning or mastering material on American government systems will benefit from the lessons in this chapter. There is no faster or easier way to learn about American government systems. Among those who would benefit are:
- Students who have fallen behind in understanding the three branches of government, roles of congress, powers of the president, the president's administration, responsibilities of the court systems or the powers of state and local governments
- Students who struggle with learning disabilities or learning differences, including autism and ADHD
- Students who prefer multiple ways of learning about American government (visual or auditory)
- Students who have missed class time and need to catch up
- Students who need an efficient way to learn about American government systems
- Students who struggle to understand their teachers
- Students who attend schools without extra learning resources on the American government
How It Works:
- Find videos in our course that cover what you need to learn or review.
- Press play and watch the video lesson.
- Refer to the video transcripts to reinforce your learning.
- Test your understanding of each lesson with short quizzes.
- Verify you're ready by completing the American Government Systems chapter exam.
Why It Works:
- Study Efficiently: Skip what you know, review what you don't.
- Retain What You Learn: Engaging animations and real-life examples make topics easy to grasp.
- Be Ready on Test Day: Use the American Government Systems chapter exam to be prepared.
- Get Extra Support: Ask our subject-matter experts any question related to the systems of the American government. They're here to help!
- Study With Flexibility: Watch videos on any web-ready device.
Students Will Review:
This chapter helps students review the concepts in an American government systems unit of a standard US citizenship study guide course. Topics covered include:
- The three branches of government
- Congress and the legislative process
- Powers and roles of the president
- The presidents administration and how it's appointed
- How the president is elected
- Presidential succession
- Powers and responsibilities of the federal court
- The check and balance system
- Structures and functions of federal and state court system
- Roles of political parties
- The US adoption of federalism
- Effects and purpose of the 10th amendment
- Powers, responsibilities and challenges of state and local governments
1. The 3 Branches of Government: Executive, Legislative, Judicial
In 1787, leaders from each of the states gathered to write the United States Constitution. The Constitution sets out how our nation is governed and creates a system that separates powers between different branches. This lesson explores the three branches of our federal government.
2. What is Congress? - Definition, Powers & Structure
In this lesson, we will review what the United States Congress is. We will take a closer look at the makeup of Congress, what its powers are and what it represents.
3. How a Bill Becomes a Law: Formal Process
In this lesson, we will review the process of how a bill becomes a law. We will take a closer look at what steps have to be taken, how a bill is changed and how it is signed into law.
4. Presidential Powers: Major Types & Examples
Our United States Constitution established three branches of government, including an executive branch headed by the U.S. president. This lesson discusses the powers and roles of the president.
5. Presidential System of Government: Roles of the President
The following lesson discusses the seven roles that the President of the United States has. A short quiz will follow the lesson to check for your understanding.
6. The Presidency, the Cabinet & the Bureaucracy
In this lesson, we will explore the relationships between the president and the bureaucracy. We will focus especially on the cabinet, independent regulatory agencies, and the Office of Management and Budget.
7. Staffing the Executive Office: Presidential Appointees & the Appointing Process
The United States president appoints, or selects, people to serve in many different positions in the federal government. This lesson identifies the various positions appointed by the president and explains the appointment process.
8. The Electoral College: Definition & Process
In the U.S., our presidential elections are decided using the Electoral College. The system is meant to balance election power between the federal and state governments. This lesson explains what the Electoral College is and how it works.
9. The U.S. Presidential Line of Succession
When an individual person serves in a pivotal role, such as the president of the United States, you need to know exactly what to do if that person cannot serve the nation. In this lesson, we'll learn the constitutional answer to who steps up if the U.S. president cannot serve.
10. Primary Election Versus General Election: Definition & Differences
In the United States, we use two different types of presidential elections. Both primary and general elections are used to determine a winning candidate. This lesson explains primary and general elections, including the differences between the two.
11. The Federal Court System of the United States: Definition, Structure & Levels
The United States has two separate court systems: the federal and the state. This lesson explores the federal court system of the Unites States, including its structure and jurisdiction.
12. The Power of the Federal Judiciary: Sources & Consequences
Federal judges and Supreme Court justices make their decisions using different rationales and theories. This lesson explores the power of the federal judiciary, including a discussion of judicial review and judicial activism.
13. The State Court System of the United States: Definition & Structure
The United States has two separate court systems: the federal and the state. Each state has its own set of state courts. This lesson explains state courts, including the structure and jurisdiction of state court systems.
14. Constitutional Checks & Balances on the Power of the Supreme Court: Definition & Examples
Our federal government is divided into three branches. Each of the three branches holds certain checks and balances on the other two branches. This lesson explores the major checks and balances on the power of the United States Supreme Court.
15. Judicial Decision Making: Steps & Participants
A case will go through several steps before it can reach the U.S. Supreme Court. This lesson explains the participants, steps, and decision making involved in the appellate process. We will examine how a case can end up in the U.S. Supreme Court.
16. Original Versus Appellate Jurisdiction: Definition & Differences
Federal courts can have either original jurisdiction or appellate jurisdiction. Some courts have both types of jurisdiction. This lesson explains the difference between original jurisdiction and appellate jurisdiction in the federal court system.
17. The Selection of Supreme Court Justices and Federal Judges: Process & Tenure
All federal judges are appointed by the United States President, and must be confirmed by the U.S. Senate, including the justices of the U.S. Supreme Court. This lesson explains the process of selecting federal judges and their tenure once selected.
18. Political Party: Definition, Function, Organization & Mobilization
The following lesson will introduce you to the concept of political parties in the United States government. A short quiz will follow to check your understanding.
19. The Current State of Contemporary United States Political Parties
The following lesson will cover the current state of the two major political parties in the United States and the mechanisms that cause political change. A short quiz will follow the lesson to check your understanding.
20. What is Federalism? - Definition & Factors of U.S. Adoption
The United States government is based on federalism, with governmental power divided between several entities. This lesson explores federalism and explains the factors that led to its use in the U.S.
21. The 10th Amendment: Definition, Summary & Examples
The 10th Amendment was added to the Constitution to assure reluctant delegates that the Federal Government would not overstep its boundaries. It specifies the federal system in the United States. Very few federal laws, however, are overturned because of the 10th Amendment.
22. What Is State Government? - Powers, Responsibilities & Challenges
The United States has a federal government and each of the 50 states has a state government. This lesson explains the organization of state governments, and explores the powers and responsibilities of state governments.
23. What Is Local Government? - Definition, Responsibilities & Challenges
Each of the 50 states has a state government. Within those states, each county and municipality also has a government. This lesson explains the organization of local governments and explores the powers and responsibilities of local governments.
Earning College Credit
Did you know… We have over 160 college courses that prepare you to earn credit by exam that is accepted by over 1,500 colleges and universities. You can test out of the first two years of college and save thousands off your degree. Anyone can earn credit-by-exam regardless of age or education level.
To learn more, visit our Earning Credit Page
Transferring credit to the school of your choice
Not sure what college you want to attend yet? Study.com has thousands of articles about every imaginable degree, area of study and career path that can help you find the school that's right for you.
Other chapters within the US Citizenship Study Guide course
- The Naturalization Process
- Naturalization Requirements
- Naturalization Tests & Interview
- American Government Principles
- American Government Rights & Duties
- America's Discovery, Colonization & Revolution
- American History in the 1800s
- Forging the United States
- American History from 1900 to Present
- Geography of the United States
- American Symbols & Holidays
- Reading in English
- English Grammar & Writing
- US Citizenship Test Information & Prep