The Year 7 curriculum focuses on the foundations of world religion. Taught on 1 hour per week, students develop the essential RS skills of description, explanation, analysis and evaluation as well as gain a fundamental knowledge base of 4 of the main world religions; Christianity, Buddhism, Hinduism and Judaism. Pupils study the background to these religions, key features, inspirational leaders, festivals, stories and the influence that these religious have on Britain and the rest of the world.
The Year 8 curriculum expands students understanding of religious knowledge and and begins to introduce moral and key philosophical discussions. Taught on 1 hour per week, students analyse; how religion can be a force for good/bad, differing interpretations of creation, wealth and poverty and animal rights. This is paired with a exploration of Islam and Sikhism.
All students study Religious Studies to GCSE. Students are studying AQA Religious Studies specification and are taught over two lessons per week. This GCSE has two components each assessed in an exam at the end of Year 11 and will be awarded under the 1-9 grading system.
Component 1: Beliefs, teachings and practices of two religions (Exam 1 – 1 hr and 45 minutes)
This unit teaches students an understanding of specific aspects and qualities of religious belief so that students can really understand the beliefs, practices and motivations of Christianity and Islam. It is assessed through one 1.45hr exam paper at the end of Year 11. In this unit students will study:
- Christianity; Key Christian beliefs, The importance of Jesus Christ and his role in Salvation, Christian worship and important festivals, the role of the Church in the local and worldwide community.
- Islam: Key Islamic beliefs, the authority of the Qur’an, the life of Muhammad and the importance of him as a role model, Islamic worship, Islamic moral duties and key festivals.
Component 2: Thematic studies
This unit applies religious knowledge and will consider the religious, philosophical and ethical studies from both religious and non-religious viewpoints. It is assessed through a 1.45hr exam at the end of Year 11 and will be worth 50% of the total GCSE marks. This unit contains 4 themes, which are:
- Theme A: Relationships and families; ethical views on contraception, sexual relationships before marriage, homosexual relationships, families and gender equality
- Theme B: Religion and life: the ethics of abortion and euthanasia, the use of animal experimentation, the origins and value of the universe, the origins and value of human life
- Theme D: Religion, peace and conflict: The use of violence to solve conflict, weapons of mass destruction, differing views on pacifism, the causes of violence, the nature of terrorism and just war
- Theme E: Religion, crime and punishment: the use of corporal and capital punishment, religious attitudes towards forgiveness, the causes of crime and the aims of punishment.