Religion, Philosophy and Ethics

The GCSE course in Religion, Philosophy and Ethics covers a number of topics of relevance to living in Britain today.  Students will learn about issues in relationships, issues of life and death, issues of good and evil, and human rights.

The GCSE course explores moral and ethical issues that we all face; students evaluate choices and news points and issues in society.  Students will discuss and explore their own opinions and beliefs, challenge accepted ways of thinking and gain insights into the beliefs and values of others in Britain today.

The department follows the WJEC Edugas Specification: Route A.  Religions studied are Christianity and Islam; students must also refer to atheist views such as Humanism when responding to religious beliefs and practices, as well as moral/ethical issues in society.

Course content

Component 1: Religious, Philosophical and Ethical Studies in the Modern World

Relationships:  • Love  • Family and community  • Marriage and divorce
Life and Death:  • Abortion • Euthanasia  • The afterlife  • Environment
Good and Evil:  • Morality  • Justice  • Suffering  • Punishment
Human Rights:  • Prejudice  Discrimination  • Human rights  • Social Justice

Component 2: Christianity

Beliefs and Teachings: The nature of: • God • Creation • Jesus • Salvation • The afterlife
Practices:  •  Forms of worship: • Sacraments • Pilgrimages • Celebrations  •  Christianity in Britain  •  The role of the Church in the local community  •  The worldwide Church

Component 3: Islam

Beliefs and Teachings:  •  The foundations of Faith  •  The nature of God  •  Prophethood, angels and the afterlife
Practices:  • The Five Pillars  •Jihad (striving for right)  • Festivals and commemoration  • The ten obligatory acts of Shi’a Islam

Exams and Assessment

In Years 9, 10 and 11 students follow the WJEC Full course GCSE Route A. Students sit three written examinations at the end of Year 11.

All three components have structured questions consisting of a series of paragraphs and extended written answers, testing AO1 and AO2 skills.

Component 1:  2 hours 50%
Component 2:  1 hour 25%
Component 3:  1 hour 25%

Why choose Philosophy and Ethics?

Philosophy and Ethics is highly regarded by universities and employers as it proves that you are able to think discuss and evaluate.  The GCSE is excellent preparation for academic A levels in any of the humanities subjects.

It particularly prepares students for the following careers:

• Law
• Legal and medical services
• Journalism and publishing
• Education and social work
• Broadcast, film, video and media sector
• Politics

Famous people who have studied Philosophy (P.P.E) at degree level include:

•  Edward Heath and David Cameron  Former Prime Ministers of the United Kingdom
• Ed Miliband – Former leader of the Labour Party
• Tony Abbott – Former Prime Minister of Australia
• Benazir Bhutto – Former Prime Minister of Pakistan