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Welcome to Religious Studies


Mrs G Coley

Subject Leader for Religious Studies
Teacher of Religious Studies
Teacher of Values and Ethics

Mr S Barratt

Teacher of Religious Studies and Values and

Miss B Woods

Teacher of Religious Studies and Values and Ethics

Mrs L Poyser

Teacher of Religious Studies and Values and Ethics
About Our Subject

The principle aim of Religious Studies is to explore the big questions about life, to find out what people believe and what differences this makes to how they live. RS helps students to make sense of their own ideas and ways of living.

Religious Studies at Christopher Whitehead Language College and Sixth Form is a mandatory subject that seeks to encourage students to develop their knowledge and understanding of different religious and non-religious beliefs and reflect on their own personal values.
Our ‘Religion and Worldviews’ curriculum is concerned with people’s beliefs, their religious practices, and what beliefs mean for people’s way of living and behaviour. We focus on the three disciplines of theology, sociology, and philosophy, which develops students knowledge of religious traditions, understanding that we all have different worldviews, and reflecting on what this means for people’s lives and how the can relate that to their own personal worldviews. We encourage students to think things through for themselves, discover their own opinions and be able to communicate their knowledge and understanding thoughtfully. We want students to leave lessons wanting to know more, their heads full of questions and excited about their next lesson.

At KS3 we follow the Worcestershire agreed syllabus.
Year 7 begins with an introduction to religion and worldviews. Followed by:
What is so radical about Jesus?
Religion in the UK: Islam, Judaism, Hinduism, Sikhism,
Should happiness be the purpose of life?
The Buddha: how and why does his teachings have meaning for people today?

Year 8
Does the world need prophets today?
Why are people good and bad?
Good, bad, right and wrong, how do I decide?
What difference does it make to be an atheist/agnostic in Britain today?
How far does it make a difference if you believe in life after death?
NATRE Spirited Arts project

Year 9
Who is God?
Why is there suffering?
Should Christians be greener than everyone else?
Are humans more important than animals?
What do people do when life gets hard?
What wisdom did famous philosophers contribute to today’s human thinking?

At GCSE students can choose Religious Studies as an option.

Our GCSE course is the AQA Specification A. 

RS GCSE challenges students with questions about belief, values, meaning, purpose and truth, enabling them to develop their own attitudes towards religious issues.

Students will also gain an appreciation of how religion, philosophy and ethics form the basis of our culture. They will develop analytical and critical thinking skills, the ability to work with abstract ideas, leadership and research skills. All these skills will help prepare them for further study.

Year 10 Component 1: The study of religion, beliefs, teachings and practices.

Students develop and understanding of the main religious tradition of Britain, Christianity and the religion of Islam. They are required to understand the diversity within each of these religions, and be able to know and understand their key beliefs, teachings and practices.


Beliefs, teachings and practices of Christianity

  • Key beliefs – nature of God, creation, life after death.
  • Jesus Christ and Salvation – incarnation, crucifixion, resurrection.
  • Worship and Festivals – baptism, eucharist , prayer, Christmas, Easter.
  • The role of the Church in the local and global community – evangelism, reconciliation, persecution, food banks, responses to poverty.

Belief, teachings and practices of Islam

  • Key beliefs – Sunni and Shi’a beliefs, nature of God, angels, predestination, life after death.
  • Authority – prophethood, holy books, imamate.
  • Worship – five pillars, 10 obligatory acts.
  • Duties and festivals – Id ul Adha, Id ul Fitr.

Year 11 Component 2: Thematic Studies

Students develop an understanding of different religious perspectives on the issues studied within and / or between religious and non-religious beliefs such as atheism and humanism.

Students also study religious, philosophical and ethical arguments related to the issues raised, and their impact and influence on the modern world. Students develop their understanding of religion through the application of teachings from religion and beliefs.


  • Theme B: Religion and Life – abortion, euthanasia, origins of the universe and humanity, animal experimentation, use and abuse of the environment, value of the world, life after death.
  • Theme D: Religion, Peace and Conflict – violence, weapons of mass destruction, holy war, just war, forgiveness, reconciliation, peacemaking, pacifism, terrorism, responses to victims of war.
  • Theme E: Religion, Crime and Punishment – intentions and actions, reasons for crime, types of crime, aims of punishment, treatment of criminals, corporal punishment, forgiveness, death penalty.
  • Theme F: Religion, Human Rights and Social Justice – human rights, social justice, discrimination, racial prejudice, positive discrimination, wealth, poverty, exploitation, charity.

At the end of Year 11 students are examined on both components and sit two examinations, each are 1hour 45 minutes.

In addition to the optional GCSE, statutory RS is delivered through their PSHE lessons, with a focus in Year 10 on Culture and Diversity and in Year 11 Human Rights and Social Justice.

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