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Principles of Government
Guide: Types of Government

These resources explain the main types of government found around the world today. Use these resources to highlight for students the similarities and differences between the five main types of government. Use the Export to My Lists button above to turn this into a research list for your students.

Theme Key Understandings

  • Societies need government to promote harmony, reduce conflict, and increase economic productivity
  • Governments come in many forms, including rule by one, rule by a few, and rule by many
  • Philosophical thought often influences a society's form of government
  • New political systems are shaped by emulating and opposing older systems of government
  • Founding documents are a result of compromise and the direct experiences of those drafting them
  • Democratic governments derive their power from the consent of the governed
  • Protection of individual rights and liberties is central to American democracy
  • Democratic governments strike a balance between majority rule and minority rights

Key Questions

  • Compare and contrast the three primary forms of government. In what ways are they each positive? In what ways can they each be problematic?
  • What type of person is likely to favor each type of government?


  1. Overview: Types of Government
  2. Visuals: Types of Government (Visual)
  3. Outline: Outline
  4. Transcript: Transcript
  5. Lesson: Introduction
  6. Lesson: 1-Rule by One
  7. Lesson: 2-Rule by a Few
  8. Lesson: 3-Rule by Many
  9. Lesson: 4-Unitary vs. Federal
  10. Lesson: Closing
  11. Glossary Terms: dictator
  12. Glossary Terms: oligarchy
  13. Glossary Terms: monarchy
  14. Photos & Illustrations: Madison, James
  15. Photos & Illustrations: Nicholas II, Tsar
  16. Photos & Illustrations: Stalin, Joseph
  17. Reference Articles: Democracy
  18. Political, Government & Court Documents: Federalist, The, No. 10 (1788)
  19. Political, Government & Court Documents: U.S. Constitution (1787)
  20. Quotes: Paine, Thomas: quote on the monarchy

MLA Citation

"Types of Government." History Hub, ABC-CLIO, 2020, historyhub.abc-clio.com/Support/Content/2156116?cid=256. Accessed 18 Feb. 2020.

Entry ID: 2156116

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