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Religious Studies A Level (Linear) at Bennett Memorial Diocesan School

Course description

1 –Christianity and the Philosophy of Religion

Section A –Study of Religion 
In this section students study key beliefs and teachings of Christianity and how these impact on individuals, communities and societies. We also explore the significance of similarities and differences of opinion within Christianity about these topics.
1. God
2. Self, death and the afterlife
3. The challenge from science
4. Christianity and the nature and function of religion
5. Sources of religious wisdom and authority in Christianity

Section B–Philosophy of Religion
Students should also be able to draw on, critically analyse and evaluate the views of scholars, from both within and outside religious traditions, and use specialist language and terminology appropriately. Topics studied:
1. Arguments for the existence of God: design, ontological, cosmological
2. Evil and suffering
3. Religious Experience
4. Religious Language
5. Miracles
6. Self, death and the afterlife

Section C–The dialogue between Philosophy and Religion
Questions will test the students’ ability to explain, analyse and evaluate the way philosophy of religion has influenced developments in religious beliefs with reference to issues concerning:
- Sources of religious authority.
- God/Ultimate Reality – including the arguments for the existence of God.
- Self, death and the afterlife.
- The challenge of science.
- The challenge of secularism.
- The nature and function of religion.
- Evil.
- Religious experience.
- Religious language.
- Miracles.

2 –Christianity and Ethics 

Section A –Study of Religion 
In this section students study key beliefs and teachings of Christianity and how these impact on individuals, communities and societies. We also explore the significance of similarities and differences of opinion within Christianity about these topics.
-. Key moral principles
-. Christian religious identity
-. Christianity and sexual identity
- Christianity and religious pluralism

Section B –Ethics and Religion 
Students should also be able to draw on, critically analyse and evaluate the views of scholars, from both within and outside religious traditions, and use specialist language and terminology appropriately. Topics studied:
- Normative ethical theories: deontological, teleological and character based
- The application of natural moral law, situation ethics and virtue ethics
- Introduction to meta-ethics: the meaning of right and wrong
-. Free will and moral responsibility
-. Conscience
-. Bentham and Kant

Section C - The dialogue between Ethical Theories and Religion

Questions will test the students’ ability to explain, analyse and evaluate the way philosophy of religion has influenced developments in religious beliefs with reference to issues concerning:

- How far these two ethical theories are consistent with religious moral decision making.
- Sources of religious authority.
- Ethical theories: Natural moral law; situation ethics; virtue ethics, and the views of Bentham and Kant.
- Key religious moral principles.
- The range of ethical issues specified above, including lying and theft.
- Issues concerning religious identity.
- Feminism.
- Religion and religious pluralism.
- Meta ethics, free will and conscience.

Entry requirements

- You don’t need to be ‘religious’.
- You do need to be inquisitive and open minded.
- An ability to think clearly, logically and critically is important.
- Able to listen to and consider a variety of possibilities before coming to a judgement.
- Must be prepared to complete wider reading and write extended essays on a regular basis.
- Resilience to challenge and willingness to lead presentations.

- APS 4+ 

Future opportunities

Religious Studies is regarded as a ‘hard’ academic subject by all the leading universities in the UK and is highly valued by the Russell Group and Oxbridge. Bennett students who have studied Religious Studies in the past have gone on to study for BA degrees in Religious Studies or Theology at various universities, including Durham, Exeter and York. Other students have gone on to study subjects such as Philosophy, History, English, French, Teaching, Nursing, Journalism and Law at Russell Group universities.

A degree in Religious Studies can open the door to a variety of careers, including law, journalism, teaching, management, local and national government, finance, public relations and so on.

How to apply

You can apply for this course through UCAS Progress. Add this course to your favourites so you can start making an application.

Last updated date: 09 November 2017
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