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Key Stage 5


A Level Religious Studies

Exam Board

OCR (H573)

Course Content

Students will cover three different aspects of Religious studies; Philosophy of Religion, Ethics, and Development in Christian thought.




Development in Christian Thought

Year 1

Ancient Philosophical Influences

Soul, Mind, & Body

Arguments based on Observation

Arguments based on Reason

Religious Experience

The Problem of Evil

Normative Ethical Theories:

Natural Moral Law

Situation Ethics

Kantian Ethics


Applied Ethics:


Business Ethics

Augustine’s teaching on human nature

Death & The Afterlife

Knowledge of God’s existence

The Person of Jesus

Christian Moral Principles

Christian Moral Action

Year 2

Nature & Attributes of God

Religious Language – Negative, Analogical and Symbolic

21st Century perspectives & Philosophical comparisons 


Meta Ethical Theory


Applied Ethics:

Sexual Ethics

Religious Pluralism and Theology

Religious Pluralism and Society

Gender and Theology

Gender and Society

The Challenge of Secularism

Liberation Theology and Marx


Students are expected to show their ability to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of religion and belief, including: religious, philosophical and/or ethical thought and teaching.  The influence of beliefs, teachings and practices on individuals, communities and societies.  They must identify the approaches to the study of religion and belief within their responses.  The majority of the marks within question responses will come from students’ abilities to analyse and evaluate aspects of, and approaches to, religion and belief, including their significance, influence and study.

These are assessed through 3 extended pieces of writing that must be completed in a 2-hour exam. Each question is worth 40 marks. Students will sit 3 papers (Philosophy, Ethics and Philosophy). Each paper is worth 33.3% of a student’s overall grade.

Why you should consider studying Religious Studies

A Level Religious Studies has been designed to provide a coherent and thought- provoking programme of study for students, whilst also acting as a rigorous course of study which prepares learners for progression to Higher Education. This qualification is designed to develop a greater understanding and appreciation of religious beliefs and teachings, as well as the disciplines of ethics and philosophy of religion. Students will develop their skills of critical analysis in order to construct balanced, informed arguments and responses to religious, philosophical and ethical ideas. A Level Religious Studies aims to engage students thoroughly and develop an interest in Religious Studies which extends beyond the classroom and can be applied to the world around them.

What future opportunities might Religious Studies lead to? [university courses, apprenticeships, careers]

An A-Level in Religious Studies leaves open a world of opportunities for higher studies. The critical analysis skills needed for this subject are highly desirable across a number of different subjects at university such as Law and Science including Medicine. The history and development of Philosophical, Ethical and Christian Theology can also lend itself to courses spanning all of the humanity subjects, as well as further studies in Philosophy and Theology. Particular studies in bio-ethics and business ethics can lead to further studies in bio-sciences and business and economics.

Is it the right course for me?

As the course is assessed purely through extended responses, candidates must have a competent level of written and spoken English. Whilst there are no specific entry requirements students will find it extremely beneficial if they have studied Religious Studies previously. Students should have an open mind, be willing to debate and discuss and have a keen interest in wider fields of study within the course. Students should enjoy learning about current affairs and be able to consider different points of view.

For more information please contact Miss Boland (Curriculum Leader) or Mrs Moggan (Assistant Curriculum Leader). Alternatively, you can find more information on the OCR website.

OCR website