Head of Department: Mrs C Harvey
Exam Board: Edexcel
Qualification: GCSE in Religious Studies
PROGRAMME OF STUDY
You will study themes within Foundational Catholic Theology, Applied Catholic Theology and Judaism, as outlined in more detail below. Religious Education is a ‘core’ subject at SJP, and is therefore compulsory.
HOW IS THE COURSE STRUCTURED & ASSESSED?
The course consists of three externally examined units.
You will be examined on the course at the end of Year 11. Papers 1 and 2 are both 1 hour 30 minutes and worth 90 marks each. Paper 3 is 1 hour and is worth 60 marks.
Paper 1: Foundational Catholic Theology – 37.5% of overall mark
Origins and Meaning: This theme requires you to consider religious and non-religious beliefs about the origins and value of the universe and human life. You are expected to make relevant references to scripture, other sources of authority and contrasting scientific and/or non-religious world-views such as those held by Atheists and Humanists.
Good and Evil: This theme requires you to consider philosophical questions concerning the origins and nature of good and evil and different religious answers to the problem of evil and suffering. You are expected to make relevant references to scripture and other sources of authority. This theme must also be studied, where appropriate, from the perspective of the Jewish religious tradition.
Paper 2: Applied Catholic Theology
Life and Death - 37.5% of overall mark: This theme requires you to consider religious beliefs about the nature of life and death. You will also learn about the Catholic teaching on the meaning of death, the importance of dying well and the importance of palliative care with reference to Catholic teaching on assisted suicide and euthanasia. You are expected to make relevant references to scripture and other sources of authority.
Sin and Forgiveness: This theme requires you to consider philosophical questions concerning the nature of criminality and the rationale for punishment. Through a study of teachings and beliefs, questions relating to the justifiability of capital punishment will be explored. You are expected to make relevant references to scripture and other sources of authority.
Paper 3: Judaism - 25% of overall mark
Beliefs and Teachings: You must know, understand and express common and divergent views and the basis for beliefs, teachings and practices. References to relevant sources of wisdom and authority are expected, including scripture and/or sacred texts.
Practices: You will learn about Jewish practices such as worship in the synagogue and at home, Jewish rituals such as Bar Mitzvah, Bat Mitzvah and Bat Chayil and features of the ceremonies. You will also learn about marriage and mourning rituals. You will learn about the origin, meaning and celebration of festivals among different Jewish communities in Britain.
WHAT CAN THESE QUALIFICATIONS LEAD TO?
A GCSE in Religious Studies demonstrates the ability to think critically and to be able to evaluate arguments and other differing opinions, in addition to developing respect, understanding and knowledge of the world in which we live. It is
regarded by employers, colleges and universities as a subject with academic rigour and high-order critical thinking skills. Traditionally it has led to careers in education, law, media, and social work.