Students of any religious faith or none, who are interested in exploring issues of meaning and purpose, life and death, will be excited by the A-level Religious Studies syllabus.
The A level course offers an introduction to philosophical thinking and the opportunity to develop rigorous intellectual skills that are valuable in any university course and any career. Students will adopt an enquiring, critical and reflective approach to the study of religion and learn to evaluate philosophical arguments. In the light of their learning they will reflect on and develop their own values, opinions and attitudes.
We follow the OCR specification and the course comprises three papers: Philosophy of Religion, Ethics and Developments in Christian Thought. The Philosophy paper asks the students to consider the nature of the judeo-Christian concept of God and proof of his/its existence. The Ethics paper is a study of moral philosophy and requires students to examine what we mean when we say something is good in addition to discussing different methods of determining the correct course of action. The third element of the course (developments of Christian thought) was new in 2016 and it requires the students to examine ways in which Christian thought has changed over time. We cover topics such as the influence of secularism and the development of feminist theology.
The exam comprises the three papers which are all two hours long. In each exam students have to write three essays of forty marks each.