Head of Department
Mr R Banks
Miss R Gamble
Given the importance and influence of religion in general and of Christianity in particular, both in our history and in the contemporary world, a broad and balanced education for our children requires a place for Religious Studies in the curriculum. Pupils’ understanding of history, literature, music, art, and the cultural and political diversity of our modern world is enhanced by an academic study of religion, based on sound educational principles. Also, in our increasingly secular, materialistic and technological society, Religious Studies allows pupils to consider religious and spiritual perspectives on life.
The Religious Studies department seeks to further the general aims of the school and has a particular role to play in the whole school’s aim ‘to foster a respect for spiritual and moral values and a tolerance towards other races, religions and ways of life’. In addition to this, the department aims:
- to help pupils in their quest for meaning and purpose by promoting an understanding and appreciation of the spiritual dimension of humanity and in particular of its religious beliefs and practices
- to assist pupils to know about, to understand and to be able to evaluate religious insights, experiences, concepts, beliefs and practices so that they can make a thoughtful response
- to examine and reflect upon contemporary moral questions and to note the influence of Christianity on personal moral behaviour, thus enabling pupils to become responsible, rational and independent decision makers
- to develop a deeper awareness and a more sensitive understanding of the contribution of religion in general and of Christianity in particular to both the religious and cultural dimensions of our society
- to contribute, along with the other departments, to the total development of pupils - spiritually, morally and socially
Key Stage 3
In Year 8 pupils study a selection of Old Testament narratives as a background to the coming of Jesus Christ and Christianity in the New Testament.
This is followed in Year 9 by a study of the life and teachings of Jesus and a brief introduction to the origins and development of the Church.
Year 10 examine three world religions, namely Hinduism, Judaism and Sikhism.
At Regent House, pupils study either OCR GCSE short or full course. The short course includes:
- Ethics – involving a study of marriage and divorce, family relationships, medical ethics (e.g. fertility treatment, abortion, euthanasia) and poverty and wealth
- Ethics – involving a study of peace and justice, equality, the media and religion
In addition, those following the full course GCSE will study:
- Philosophy – belief about deity, religious and spiritual experience, the end of life
- Philosophy – good and evil, reason and revelation, religion and science
Pupils study the CCEA GCE Religious Studies course.
In Year 13 at AS Level, pupils follow an Introduction to the Acts of the Apostles (the earliest history of the Christian Church) and an Introduction to the Philosophy of Religion (the existence of God, the existence of evil, miracles, religious experience and the afterlife).
In Year 14 at A2 Level, pupils follow A Study of Acts, Galatians and I Corinthians, as well as Religious Belief and Competing Claims (religion and science, religion and psychology, Marxism, Humanism, Existentialism, religion and morality and relationships between religions).
No religious faith is required or assumed in the delivery of the Religious Studies curriculum and the completion of the courses outlined above.
As with other A Level courses, Religious Studies is fully recognized by universities and is relevant for courses in, for example, Theology, Philosophy, Psychology, Sociology, Ancient History, Classical Civilisations, Anthropology and Archaeology.
Religious Studies is especially useful for those considering Christian ministry or mission, school teaching or any of the caring professions. The reasoning and debating skills developed in the philosophical side of the subject are particularly relevant for a legal career.