This course develops your understanding of current affairs, and religious and ethical issues. You will develop a critical and empathetic approach to the study of religious, political and legal events and ethical developments in society.
A level Religious Studies could help you to progress into careers in politics, journalism, legal and medical services, education and social work or the media.
You will develop your interest in an in depth study of religion and belief and relate it to the wider world and you will develop your knowledge and understanding appropriate to a specialist study of religion.
You will develop an understanding of religious thought and its contribution to individuals, communities and societies. You will adopt an enquiring, critical and reflective approach to religious study and you will reflect on and develop your own values and attitudes in light of your studies.
Method of assessment
The course will be divided into three key areas:
1. Philosophy of religion
2. Religion and ethics
3. Development in religious thought (in the context of one religion chosen from Christianity, Hinduism, Buddhism, Judaism or Islam).
There will be three exams at the end of the linear two year course:
Each of the exams will be two hours in duration
Each will be worth 33.3% of the final grade.
Topic areas covered
Philosophy of Religion
You will study philosophical issues and questions raised by religion and belief; these include: arguments regarding the existence or non-existence of God, the nature and influence of religious experience and the problems of evil and suffering. You will also explore philosophical language and thought, through significant concepts and the works of key thinkers, illustrated in issues or debates.
Religion and Ethics
You will study ethical language and thought, with exploration of key concepts and the works of influential thinkers. Ethical theory will also be applied to issues of importance, namely euthanasia, business ethics and sexual ethics.
Developments in Religious Thought
You will have the opportunity to study one religious tradition. This will include the exploration of religious beliefs, values, teachings and practices that shape religious identity, as well as sources of wisdom and authority. Central to this unit will be a study of the ways traditions have developed over time and religious responses to challenges and significant contemporary social issues.