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Religious Studies Curriculum

At SRMS, the study of Religion, Philosophy and Ethics is a meaningful and thought-provoking exploration of major world faiths and contemporary moral issues. Carried out in a non-doctrinal and open way, this subject allows learners to gain an awareness of where beliefs come from and how they influence individuals and communities. Our guiding aim as a department is to provide all students with a moral grounding and awareness of the impact religious and cultural beliefs have on individuals and wider societies.

We encourage all students to learn from each other in a respectful manner and engage with a challenging curriculum which allows all to gain a deep insight into beliefs and practices alongside philosophical and ethical enquiry. Through a rigorous and systematic study, students develop skills in analysis, critical thinking and developing an informed argument, which prepares students as citizens who are well informed, inquisitive and considerate.

In KS3 there is an overriding theme or focus for the year whereby units of study and lessons are sequenced in a way that aims to provide a detailed investigation of the topic, which allows students to build upon knowledge and skills throughout their RPE journey. 

In KS4 students either study the full AQA GCSE course or Core (non-examined) RPE. The full AQA GCSE involves an in-depth study of beliefs and practices in Christianity and Islam and Philosophical and Ethical Themes including, Existence and Revelation, Religion and Life, Crime and Punishment and Relationships and Families. Core (non-examined) RPE involves a sequence of lessons exploring debates within religion and science.

Students who choose to study the OCR A Level in Religious Studies will build on the knowledge, understanding and skills established at GCSE. Learners will be introduced to a more advanced approach to Religious Studies, and will develop a deeper understanding of the beliefs, teachings and philosophy.

Year 7

Students begin their RPE journey with exploring the theme Faith and Action, this starts with comparative study of religious and non-religious beliefs and practices through examining creations narratives and expressions of faith. The following units of study involve investigating the questions; What does it mean to be Sikh and British? Who was Jesus? What kind of world did Jesus want? How do Hindu’s express and celebrate their faith? What are the different worldviews about caring for the Earth and Animals?

Year 8

The Year 8 course concentrates on understanding the Abrahamic religions. With units of study on Judaism, Islam and Christianity, students examine biblical and historical events and debates within these belief systems. Through looking at the lives and teachings of the prophets Abraham, Moses and Muhammad, learners gain and awareness and understanding of fundamental beliefs and moral codes as well and the influence teachings have had on religious communities.

Year 9

In Year 9 students focus on Moral Philosophy, which involves engaging with big ultimate questions like; Should happiness be the purpose of life? and Can we be good without a God? As well as this, students examine contemporary spirituality and atheistic belief systems including Buddhism and Humanism. Throughout the year, students apply religious and non-religious belief teachings and logical arguments to examine current ethical matters.

Year 10 GCSE Full Course

In the first GCSE year, students learn and are assessed on the following topics of component one (Study of Religions); The nature of God and Jesus Christ and salvation, key Islamic beliefs and authority in Islam. As well as the following topics in component two (Thematic Studies); Origins and value of the universe, Origins and value of human life (Theme B: Religion and Life) and Religion, crime and the causes of crime and punishment (Theme E: Crime and Punishment).

Year 10 Core RPE

Students begin the year by examining the place of religion in society engaging in debates about how faith and belief systems interact in aspects of public life.  Students also explore matters of life and death (from cradle to grave) by looking at how faith presents itself within important life stages.

Year 11 GCSE Full Course

In the second GCSE year, students learn and are assessed on the following topics of component one (Study of Religions); Christian worship and festivals, the role of the church in the local and worldwide community, Islamic worship and Islamic worship, duties and festivals. As well as the following topics in component two (Thematic Studies): Sex, marriage, divorce and gender equality (Theme A: Relationships and Families) and human rights, wealth and poverty (Theme F)

Year 11 Core RPE

Students continue their philosophical enquiry, by focusing on the problem of evil and suffering considering a range of theistic and atheistic viewpoints. Learners also focus on developing written and verbal skills for forming philosophical argument.

Year 12 A-Level Religion, Philosophy and Ethics

During the first Year of A-Level, in the Philosophy component of the course, students will investigate; Ancient philosophical influences, Arguments based on observation, Arguments based on reason, The problem of evil and Soul, mind and body. In the Ethics component students learn about normative theories and applied ethics, including; Natural Law, Situation Ethics, Utilitarianism, Kantian Ethics, Euthanasia, Business Ethics. In the Religion component, students explore; Augustine’s Teaching on Human Nature, Death and the Afterlife, Knowledge of God’s Existence, The person of Jesus Christ, Christian moral principles, Christian moral action.

Year 13 A-Level Religion, Philosophy and Ethics

During the second year of A-Level, in the Philosophy component of the course, students will investigate; Attributes of God, Religious experience, Religious Language and Religious Language in the Twentieth Century. In the Ethics component students learn about Meta-ethical theories, Conscience and Sexual Ethics. In the Religion component, students explore; Gender Equality, Philosophy & Science, Tolerance, Justice & Liberation, Islam & the State and Islam in Europe.