EPR is fantastic. You get to debate big questions like ‘does god exist?’ and ‘is euthanasia acceptable?’ it develops your ability to make strong arguments.

Cat Veti

Cat Veti

Course Description

The Religious Studies A Level will enable students to develop a deeper understanding of answers to key ethical, philosophical and religious questions. It will cover a range of issues which have been debated throughout history, and which are still relevant today. The A Level course involves the study of three modules from the OCR Religious Studies course.

Entry Requirements

Achieve 5 or more standard GCSE passes or higher (grade 4 or higher).

If a student is applying for a course in a subject that they have studied at GCSE it is expected that a student would have achieved at least a standard pass (grade 4) in this subject.

Course Content

Philosophy of religion
Learners will study:

  • Ancient philosophical influences on the philosophy of religion, including Aristotle and Plato
  • The nature of the soul, mind and body
  • Arguments about the existence or non-existence of God
  • The nature and impact of religious experience
  • The challenge for religious belief of the problem of evil
  • Ideas about the nature of God
  • Issues in religious language.

Religion and ethics
Learners will study:

  • Normative ethical theories – theories which attempt to set rules for what is right and what is wrong, e.g. Utilitarianism and Natural Law
  • The application of ethical theory to two contemporary issues of importance – euthanasia and business ethics
  • Ethical language and thought
  • Debates surrounding the significant idea of conscience
  • Sexual ethics and the influence on ethical thought of developments in religious beliefs.

Developments in religious thought
Learners will study the following issues in the context of Christianity:

  • Beliefs about human nature
  • Death and the Afterlife
  • Beliefs about God and Jesus
  • Christian morality and ethics
  • Religious pluralism – how Christians respond to other religions
  • Gender
  • Secularism
  • Liberation Theology and Marx

Assessment

Each of the three components will be assessed through a 2 hour exam paper at the end of the second year. Each component is worth 33.3% of the total marks for A Level.

Future Opportunities

Religious Studies is a sought-after subject amongst employers and higher education institutions because it equips students with a wide range of different skills. It enables students to understand a variety of belief systems and, most importantly, to be able to evaluate beliefs and arguments. A Level Religious Studies students will develop skills in literacy, textual analysis, critical thinking, logical reasoning and evaluation of arguments. Religious Studies students enter a wide range of careers including journalism, policing, finance (accountancy, banking, management and consultancy), education, marketing, sales, advertising, law and social work. Recent Religious Studies students have gone on to study a very broad range of subjects at University, including Philosophy, Psychology, Accounting, Music Technology and Science, to name just a few.

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