Topic 5

The Constitution, Amendments, and Supreme Court Decisions

Preamble to the Constitution
Preamble to the Constitution, by Gordon Johnson, licenced under CC0 1.0

Snapshot of Topic 5

Supporting Question

Massachusetts Standards [8.T5.1-6]

  1. The necessary and proper clause
  2. Amendments to the U.S. Constitution
  3. Constitutional issues related to the Civil War, federal power, and individual rights
  4. Civil Rights and equal protection for race, gender, and disability
  5. Marbury v. Madison and the principle of judicial review
  6. Significant supreme court decisions:
    1. First Amendment rights
      • Religion
      • Assembly
      • Press
      • Petition
      • Speech
    2. Due process and equal protection
    3. Rights in conflict
      • United States flag and the “Pledge of Allegiance”
      • School prayer
      • National security
      • Gun control

AP Government and Politics Standards

Topic 5: The Constitution, Amendments, and Supreme Court Decisions

Topic 5 explores the evolving nature of the United States Constitution through amendments, landmark Supreme Court decisions, social and political movements, and dramatic historical events. The chapters in Topic 5 cover the history and the present-day realities of core constitutional issues around the struggles of women, people of color, and individuals with disabilities to gain civil rights and civil liberties in our nation's democratic system.


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