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Philosophy and Ethics A Level at St Joseph's Catholic Academy

Course description

Philosophy and Ethics at AS and A2 is a subject that challenges students to think critically and deeply about a number of areas.

The course explores fundamental questions of religious belief in a rigorous way, which enables students to increase their knowledge and understanding of key ethical, philosophical and theological ideas. It also enables students to engage with and explore their own beliefs and attitudes to life and existence. Thus the value of the course is both personal and academic.

Through a variety of activities students will develop the ability to construct coherent and logical arguments, as well as critically analysing the arguments of key philosophers and ethical theorists. You will gain the confidence to evaluate and challenge Plato and Aristotle, Kant and Hume and many more of the famous names of western Philosophy

Course content


Unit 1 Philosophy of Religion: One exam 90 minutes Ancient Greek influences on the philosophy of religion. Judaeo-Christian influences on the philosophy of religion. Traditional arguments for the existence of God: the ontological argument, the cosmological argument, the teleological argument and the moral argument. Challenges to religious belief: the challenge of evil and the challenge of science.

Unit 2 Religious Ethics: One exam 90 minutes Ethical theories: Absolute and relative morality, Natural Law, Kantian ethics, Utilitarianism,Christian Ethics. Applied Ethics: Abortion, euthanasia, right to a child, genetic engineering, war and peace.


Unit 3 Philosophy of Religion II: One exam 90 minutes Religious language, religious experience, miracle, attributes of God, life and death; the soul. Unit 4 Religious Ethics II: One exam 90 minutes. Meta-ethics, free will and determinism, conscience, virtue ethics, environmental and business ethics, sexual ethics.

Entry requirements

No specfic subject grades.



Future opportunities

The skills developed are also transferrable and vital to many more academic subjects. As well as being an extremely useful foundation for higher academic study Philosophy and Ethics, and the skills gained, are highly valued by a number of professions such as legal and business careers, the medical profession, journalism, teaching and social work.

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact St Joseph's Catholic Academy directly.

Last updated date: 12 June 2015

Key information

  • Start date: Next September
  • Duration: 1 - 2 Years