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Religious Studies

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Religious Studies is an exciting and dynamic department that seeks to educate students, not only in the basics of religion, but to encourage students to consider major philosophical and ethical ideas.


In Years 7-9, students will gain a basic knowledge of the six world faiths and how they have shaped our communities, our nation and the world. Various themes of philosophy are explored, including many existential questions and students will leave lessons with more questions raised than answered. Students enjoy RS throughout the school and it is a popular subject at GCSE and A Level. Our course at GCSE and AL is named ‘Philosophy and Ethics’. Be warned, we encourage our students to raise these important and relevant issues around the dinner table!

Whether one believes in a religion or not, and whether one believes in rebirth or not, there isn't anyone who doesn't appreciate kindness and compassion- Dalai Lama

At Key Stage 3, students study all the main six world faiths and also the following themes –

Year 7 - Abraham and Isaac, existence of God, inspirational individuals and religious experience

Year 8 – Festivals of light, pilgrimage and life after death

Year 9 – Relationships and sexuality, medical ethics, the problem of evil and The Shoah


Religious Studies GCSE

We study AQA GCSE Specification A – Religious Studies.

Main beliefs, teachings and practices of two religions (Christianity and Hinduism)

Christianity

  • The nature of God, life after death, life of Jesus, worship and ritual, rites of passage, festivals and the role of the church in the local community
  • How the worldwide church has worked for reconciliation and response to persection.
  • Christianity charities, including Cafod / Christian Aid / Tearfund

Hinduism

  • Nature of God – Brahman and the trimurti
  • Beliefs about the nature of human life, including dharma, samsara, moksha and ahimsa
  • Worship in the temple and at home. Festivals, including Diwali and Holi
  • Meditation and pilgrimage, including Kumbh Mela

Religious, Philosophical and ethical studies (Christianity and Hinduism)

  • Sexuality, marriage and divorce
  • Families and gender equality
  • Origins of the universe
  • Existence of God and revelation
  • Religion, violence, terrorism and war, religion and belief in the 21st century
  • Crime and punishment
  • Human rights, wealth and poverty

Religious Studies A Level

We study AQA Religious Studies at A Level

Topics include:

Study of Christianity including:

  • Nature of God
  • Life after death
  • Challenges from science
  • Nature and role of authority

Philosophy of religion including:

  • Arguments for the existence of God
  • Evil and suffering
  • Religious experience
  • Religious language
  • Miracles
  • Self and life after death
  • Nature and function of religion
  • Ethics, religion and society
  • Religious identity,
  • Religion and sexual identity
  • Religious pluralism
  • Ethical theories, including utilitarianism and situation ethics
  • Issues of animal life and death
  • Meta ethics
  • Free will and moral responsibility
  • Conscience
  • Bentham and Kant

Follow @RS_WHS on Twitter

Enrichment Opportunities

We run the club ‘Horizons’ – which is a current affairs club on a Friday for all students.

We have run many trips abroad to Malta and Rome and this year, will be running a trip to Poland to visit the sites of Auschwitz – Birkenau for students in Years 10 – 13.

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