Religious Studies is a subject that challenges your knowledge of philosophical and ethical approaches. It is different to the study of religion. This subject develops skills of analysis, interpretation and debate. This A level allows you to explore classical arguments for and against theism, atheism and agnosticism. It comprises abstract thinking as well as logical arguments for and against the existence of God. You will also explore religious and secular arguments about morality, all of which are applied to medical ethics and war and peace.
Section A: Philosophy of religion Arguments for the existence of God
- Presentation: Paley’s analogical argument.
- Criticisms: Hume
- Presentation: Anselm’s a priori argument.
- Criticisms: Gaunilo and Kant.
- Presentation: Aquinas' Way 3. The argument from contingency and necessity.
- Criticisms: Hume and Russell
Evil and suffering
- The problem of evil and suffering.
- The nature of religious experience. Verifying religious experiences
Component 2: Ethics
- Normative ethical theories Applied Ethics, War, animal experimentation, abortion
Section 2 – 7061/2B Christianity
- Sources of wisdom and authority
- Self, death and afterlife
- Good conduct and key moral principles
- Expressions of religious identity
Students will be assessed through examinations at the end of the two year course.
Students with an interest in religion, philosophy, ethics and social history, and who have an open mind ready to explore topics and concepts that may conflict with, and contradict, their own beliefs. Students need to achieve a grade 5 or higher in English and Maths. They also need to achieve a grade 5 or higher in Religious Studies at GCSE level.
The course is highly regarded by both universities and employers and will therefore support your progression to a variety of professional careers in virtually any sector. You will develop a wide range of transferable skills, including written and oral communication, textual analysis and critical thinking