Unit 2 Past Paper Questions


Outline three types of committees operating in the House of Commons. (5)

  • Legislative committees
  • Departmental Select Committees
  • Cross-departmental committees
  • Ongoing committeees
  • Backbench Business Committee


  • You get a mark for each type you outline, so outline three.
  • Two marks are given if any one type is explained with some detail, so explain one of the three types you outlined.

How effective are the Commons committees? (15)

The various Commons committees can be said to be effective, the source notes the following:

 scrutinise legislation and departments

 Committees bring publicity to issues and they publish their reports to which the government has 60 days to respond.

 The reforms made to the committee systems have raised their profile and potential.

 The committees are televised and attract public interest. 

 The Liaison Committee brings greater scrutiny to the Prime Minister.

 There is a debate as to the impact of Commons committees. Some argue that they are important with a rising impact. Whereas others state that despite the reform their findings and their influence is alleged to be minimal. 

Excluding committees, assess the means by which Parliament is able to control the executive. (25)

 There is PM questions, where MPs can ask the PM questions directly on executive affairs. The Official Opposition has a clear role in PM question time, which heightens scrutiny. However, critics point out that this is a…


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