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Religious Studies

The Religious Studies Department delivers a curriculum focussed on the impact and importance of the six main world religions practiced today in the UK and throughout the world e.g. Buddhism, Christianity, Islam and Judaism etc. Students are also introduced to philosophy, morality and ethics and are encouraged to reflect upon their own (and different) responses to key religious, spiritual & non-religious questions. Throughout we aim to develop religious and theological literacy through religions and worldviews. At all times students are encouraged to think, question, evaluate and respect others.

Another key feature of the Religious Studies Department is its reputation for international travel. We continue to play a major role within the school in organising successful adventures to countries all over the world including China, Egypt, India, Israel, Morocco, South Africa, Ecuador and the Galapagos Islands, Namibia and more recently Costa Rica (July 2018). These trips are hugely popular.

Namibia, including the Tropic of Capricorn, Namib Desert and Africa Cheetah Reserve (July 2016)

Standing in front of Mount Cotpaxi near Quito; fishing for piranha in the Amazon and swimming with sealions in the Galapagos Islands (Ecuador & Galapagos Islands, July 2013)

Literally ‘in the lion’s den’; feeding elephants at Knysna and Table Mountain from Robben Island (South Africa, July 2011)

Key Stage 3

The Religious Studies Department adopts the ‘Hertfordshire Agreed Syllabus (2017-2022) for Religious Education’ as a basis for its KS3 curriculum. As a general overview pupils consider philosophical questions about the existence and non-existence of God; key religious events (including festivals, pilgrimage, worship and rites of passage); prejudice & discrimination in the context of Judaism and the relevance of key religious beliefs and practices today e.g. the Parables of Jesus; the Sermon on the Mount; the Five Pillars of Faith and Hindu beliefs about life after death etc.

Key Stage 4

Students are following the new GCSE ‘AQA Religious Studies A Specification’ (8062). The focus of this exam is the two principal religions of Christianity and Islam. Students can expect to explore in detail a variety of themes including Christian and Muslim beliefs about crime and punishment; war, peace and conflict etc. They will also explore the key beliefs & practices associated with Christianity and Islam e.g. the nature of God, worship & festivals etc.

Key Stage 5

Students are following the new GCE ‘AQA Religious Studies Specification’ (7062). This syllabus allows students to explore and evaluate philosophical arguments for the existence of God (Design, Cosmological & Ontological arguments etc.); philosophical problems about evil and suffering; religious language; miracles and life after death. Students also study ethical theories (Utilitarianism & Situation Ethics); Meta ethics; issues of human and animal life after death and free will & moral responsibility etc.

Finally, we are a high achieving department with a history of excellent exam results and a reputation for encouraging students to explore and enquire.

Mr J Johnstone (Head of Religious Studies)