Religious Studies (RS)
Religious Studies is the study of religions and non-religious beliefs such as atheism and humanism, developing an understanding of divinity, faith, action, morality, human life and death, critical reflection of beliefs as well as the personal reflection of students' own values, opinions and attitudes in light of their study.
The study of Religious Studies assesses what it means to be 'ethical' and how we all, as human beings, try to make the right decisions when faced with moral dilemmas in life. This promotes a student's sense of moral and social responsibility as well as understanding, respect and tolerance of a range of beliefs, opinions and cultures, both past and present.
Our key principle in Religious Studies is to introduce philosophical, religious and ethical studies to allow students to explore 'ultimate' or philosophical questions through critical thinking and class debate.
The curriculum is designed to embed esoteric knowledge (powerful knowledge), which can contribute to developing well-rounded human beings.
Our aim is that students are enabled to think independently, to question and change society for the better. Our curriculum stops the marginalisation of groups of people by developing a better understanding of the social world and provides intellectual challenges that are empowering.
Within Religious Studies our aim is for students to display personal growth, compassion and empathy, in addition to respect.
Students are encouraged to ask Big Questions and to understand morality, engaging with questions of belief, value, meaning, purpose, truth and their influence on human life, which will offer opportunities to both learn about and learn from religion to develop a strength of character and equip students, so they are able to cope with choices they are likely to encounter in life.
The curriculum analyses the six main world religions: Christianity, Islam, Judaism, Sikhism, Hinduism and Buddhism and reflects on their beliefs, teachings and practices in order to develop spiritual, moral, social and cultural awareness. Through this, our students gain extensive, relevant knowledge and understanding of religious beliefs, teachings, practice, and sources of wisdom and authority, including through their reading of key religious texts, other texts, and scriptures of the religions they are studying.
Our students will engage in enquiry based learning to develop as critical and reflective thinkers, with inquisitive minds and will learn to think independently and organise and communicate articulately their religious knowledge and understanding in different ways and reach substantiated conclusions.
The Religious Studies curriculum is designed taking into account the Ofsted research review series which identified the promotion of the three lenses of the subject: Theology; Philosophy and Ethics and Social Sciences through the teaching of a wide range of religious and non-religious worldviews. Additionally, consideration has been given to teaching students subject-specific vocabulary before they encounter it in content in longer length text
The curriculum spirals substantive core concepts of hermeneutics (scripture), existence of God, role of society and belief in society, morality, freewill and the afterlife. These are introduced in Year 7 and revisited throughout the curriculum in increasing levels of complexity, in order to develop students' skills, knowledge and understanding over time.
Please click the link to view our Core Religious Studies Curriculum Year Overview
Please click the link to view our Religious Studies GCSE and A level Curriculum Year Overview
Future Pathways and Next Steps
Through the study of Religious Education we aim to unlock each students' potential and inspire them to achieve excellence by being the best they can be. This can lead to a wide range of future opportunities, some of which include:
University Degrees: Liberal Arts and Sciences, Theology and Religion
Apprenticeships: Nursery Assistant, Youth Work
Careers: Charity / Aid Worker, Family Support Worker, Politician, Religious Minister, Social Worker, Student Advisor
Students can find out more about the subject and careers above by logging into their Unifrog account at https://www.unifrog.org/sign-in and using the Subject Library and Careers Library tools.