Constitutions play a critical role in the governance structures of countries around the world. They serve as the foundational legal document that outlines the framework for government operations, the distribution of power, and the rights of citizens within a nation. In this course material, we will delve into the multifaceted concept of constitutions, exploring their meaning, sources, functions, and various types.

Meaning: A constitution can be defined as the supreme law of a country that establishes the organization, powers, and limits of the government. It sets out the principles that govern the political system and the rights of individuals. Constitutions are essential for maintaining order, resolving conflicts, and upholding justice within a society.

Sources: Constitutions derive their authority from various sources, which may include historical documents, statutes, judicial decisions, customs, and conventions. These sources provide legitimacy to the constitution and ensure its continuity over time. Additionally, some constitutions may be influenced by external factors such as international treaties or conventions.

Functions: The primary function of a constitution is to establish the structure of government and allocate powers among its different branches. It also defines the relationship between the government and the governed, ensuring accountability and protection of individual rights. Constitutions serve as a basis for the rule of law, guiding the actions of policymakers and institutions.

Types: Constitutions can be categorized into written and unwritten, rigid and flexible. Written constitutions are explicitly codified into a single document or a set of documents, while unwritten constitutions are based on historical documents, statutes, and customs. Rigid constitutions are difficult to amend and often require special procedures for changes, whereas flexible constitutions can be amended through regular legislative processes.

Understanding the significance of constitutions is crucial for appreciating the complexities of governance systems and the protection of individual rights within a society. As we explore the nuances of constitutions, we will analyze their role in shaping political processes, defining power structures, and safeguarding democracy in various countries.


  1. Define And Identify Sources And Functions Of Constitutions
  2. Compare The Nature Of Constitutions

Lesson Note

The concept of a Constitution is fundamental to the governance and organization of a nation. It is a comprehensive set of laws and principles that outline the framework of government, delineate the powers and duties of various government entities, and enumerate the rights and responsibilities of citizens.

Lesson Evaluation

Congratulations on completing the lesson on Constitution. Now that youve explored the key concepts and ideas, its time to put your knowledge to the test. This section offers a variety of practice questions designed to reinforce your understanding and help you gauge your grasp of the material.

You will encounter a mix of question types, including multiple-choice questions, short answer questions, and essay questions. Each question is thoughtfully crafted to assess different aspects of your knowledge and critical thinking skills.

Use this evaluation section as an opportunity to reinforce your understanding of the topic and to identify any areas where you may need additional study. Don't be discouraged by any challenges you encounter; instead, view them as opportunities for growth and improvement.

  1. What are the sources of a constitution? A. Government recommendations B. Divine authority C. Legislature decisions D. Constituent Assembly deliberations Answer: B. Divine authority
  2. What is the main function of a constitution? A. To establish political parties B. To declare war C. To set up the judiciary system D. To organize and limit government power Answer: D. To organize and limit government power
  3. Which of the following is a type of constitution based on specific documents created at a particular time? A. Unwritten constitution B. Democratic constitution C. Rigid constitution D. Flexible constitution Answer: C. Rigid constitution
  4. In a flexible constitution, how easy is it to amend the constitution? A. Extremely difficult B. Very easy C. Moderately difficult D. Requires a referendum Answer: B. Very easy
  5. What does sovereignty refer to in a constitution? A. Power resides with the military B. Supreme power within a state C. Power solely in the hands of the President D. Supreme power in the judiciary Answer: B. Supreme power within a state
  6. Which type of government organization consists of a monarch as the head of state? A. Autocracy B. Oligarchy C. Democracy D. Monarchy Answer: D. Monarchy
  7. In a parliamentary system, who is the head of government? A. President B. Prime Minister C. Monarch D. Speaker of the House Answer: B. Prime Minister
  8. What type of government structure involves a division of power between a central government and regional governments? A. Unitary B. Confederation C. Federal D. Autocratic Answer: C. Federal
  9. Which economic system is based on private ownership of the means of production and distribution of goods? A. Socialism B. Communism C. Capitalism D. Totalitarianism Answer: C. Capitalism

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Past Questions

Wondering what past questions for this topic looks like? Here are a number of questions about Constitution from previous years

Question 1 Report

A country's constitution may be derived from which one of the following sources?

Question 1 Report

The Nigerian constitution guarantees freedom of speech under which fundamental right?

Practice a number of Constitution past questions