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Welcome to

St Albans Girls' School

GCSE & A Level

The Department

Curriculum Leader: Ms S Wilson


Exam Board: Eduqas

Specification Number: C120P3

What will be studied?

At GCSE in Religion, Ethics and Philosophy our aim is to encourage students to think outside the box; for students to develop an understanding of other cultures and traditions as well as challenge ignorance by demonstrating knowledge of religions and different interpretations of the texts. Students will be stretched and challenged in their thinking, they will be able to develop and deepen their thoughts and opinions as well as improve in their debating skills, essay writing and awareness. Lessons are made up of theoretical work, P4C (Philosophy for Children), essay skills and exam practice.

Students will study two religions; Christianity and Islam, students will then have four ‘themes’ that students will learn and then have to link to the two religions. The themes include; Relationships, Life and Death, Good and Evil and Human Rights.

Students studying the EDUQAS specification find that it helps them in their English writing, their understanding and interpretation of texts in English, Media and in History. Students also find links in all subjects including Business, Geography and Sociology.

Students are encouraged to attend Philosophy and Film Club as well as given opportunities to go on trips during Curriculum Enrichment Week.

How is the course assessed?

EDUQAS: Route A3 – including Component 3 Option 3: Islam, Course code: C120P3
Students will take three exams in the following sections:

Component A: Religious, Philosophical and Ethical Studies in the Modern World
Written examination: 2 hours
50% of qualification 120 marks (plus 6 for spelling, punctuation and grammar)

Component 2: Study of Christianity
Written examination: 1 hour
25% of qualification 60 marks (plus 6 for spelling, punctuation and grammar)

Component 3: Study of a World Faith: Islam
Written examination: 1 hour
25% of qualification 60 marks

What texts are recommended?

We have EDUQAS textbooks that we would recommend. Parents can contact the department if they would like the ISBN numbers.

RS Review which can be found in the Library or in Room RP1.

What websites are recommended?

What equipment is needed?

A pen, ruler, highlighter, their exercise book and an open mind.

A Level

The Russell Group of top universities has made it clear that Religious Studies A level provides ‘suitable preparation for University generally’.

Exam Board: OCR

Specification Number: H573

What will be studied?

Students will focus on the concept of good and evil, discussing the issues surrounding moral and natural evil as well as the problems of war.

At A Level we follow the OCR course in Religious Studies H573.  Students will study the following three sections:

Philosophy of Religion (01)

Students will look at the following topics within this section:

  • ancient philosophical influences
  • 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 (02)

Students will look at the following topics within this section:

  • normative ethical theories
  • the application of ethical theory to two contemporary issues of importance
  • 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 (03)

Students will look at the following topics within this section:

  • religious beliefs, values and teachings, their interconnections and how they vary historically and in the contemporary world
  • sources of religious wisdom and authority
  • practices which shape and express religious identity, and how these vary within a tradition
  • significant social and historical developments in theology and religious thought
  • key themes related to the relationship between religion and society in the context of one religion- Christianity (03).

Students will follow the course for two years before taking exams at the end of Year 13.

How is the course assessed?

Each section is worth 33.3% of the overall A Level grade.

There will be an exam for each section which will be 2 hours and consist of 120 marks each.

What texts are recommended?

Aristotle, Physics II.3 and Metaphysics V.2
Annas, J. (1998) An Introduction to Plato’s Republic, Oxford University Press
Blackmore, S. (2010) Consciousness; an introduction, Routledge
Davies, B. (2000) Philosophy of Religion: a guide and anthology, Oxford University Press
Dawkins, R. (1991) The Blind Watchmaker, Penguin
Hick, J. (1985) Death and Eternal Life, Palgrave Macmillan
Murray, M. J. (ed) (1999) Philosophy of Religion: The Big Questions, Blackwell
Plato, Republic Book
Singer, P. (1993) Practical Ethics, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press
Vardy, P. (1999) The Puzzle of God, Harper Collins
Wilcockson, M. (2010) Social Ethics, Hodder Education

What websites are recommended?

What equipment is needed?

A4 Ring Binder, hole punch, file dividers, lined paper, highlighter, pencils and pens.

Get in touch

Mr P O'Neill

Sandridgebury Lane

St Albans



(To request a paper copy, please contact our Administration Department)

01727 853134