Philosophy and Ethics
It is our aim in the department to encourage students to ask fundamental questions about existence and belief, to encourage a questioning attitude and a level of tolerance towards those of other belief systems to their own.
In Year 7 students begin a programme of study which considers looking at the reasons for studying RE in schools and includes reference to the major religions of the world and their views on God, and ultimate questions such as “Why are we here” and whether or not humans have a soul. There is also a study of the life of Moses as well as the life and teachings of Jesus. The year ends with a unit on festivals from some of the different religious traditions.
The Year 8 programme then develops these themes a little further looking at further issues concerning the existence of God and also views on the Afterlife. There are 2 major units of study on Buddhism and Islam as well as a smaller unity on People of Faith.
Year 9 and GCSE sees most students begin to study the OCR Religious Studies GCSE course which focuses on Philosophy and Applied Ethics. This is a course which focuses on Christianity and its views about God, the end of life as well as the beginning of life. It also further builds on the environment issues addressed in year 8 as well as finishing with a new unit on Media studies. Students are encouraged to consider these views from a religious perspective and to evaluate their use in contemporary society.