Religious Studies

Mr J Walmsley (Subject Leader)  
Mrs R Easley

Philosophy, Ethics and Theology forms an integral part of Dover Grammar School for Girls. The department is committed to providing a high standard, in which students can develop their own beliefs and values whilst exploring the principal world religions, philosophical and ethical issues. The department works hard to increase the spiritual awareness of all students and to develop an appreciation of the world in which we live and those around us.

Students in Years 7 – 11 receive one lesson each week. Lessons are carefully planned to make them stimulating, enjoyable, interesting and thought provoking. Personalised learning is central to the success of the department, ensuring all students are challenged.

Assessments take place each term. Students are given constructive feedback and a target by their teacher to supplement their own target/indicator grade. These are evaluated on a regular basis, in order to raise standards. Years 7 – 8 students are assessed using the school criteria, whilst Years 9 – 11 students are marked according to the AQA examination board criteria.

The department follows the Kent Agreed Syllabus 2012, giving students a wide ranging and interesting variety of topics to study. The department takes an academic approach to religious and moral issues, recognising that a multitude of responses exist. Therefore, it is the role of the department to equip students with the knowledge and ability to consider these topic areas for themselves, namely:

Year 7:
A project based learning approach to Sikhism (continued from Key Stage 2)
Ideas about God and sources of authority in Sikhism and Christianity
Christianity – What’s that? Ensuring the basics are in place
What is pilgrimage? Pilgrimage to Canterbury - the medieval years to the present day
Animal Rights – How do I make decisions about my views on this?
What are the sources of authority in Buddhism?

Year 8:
Does God exist?
An Introduction to Islam
How do humans express their spirituality?
Interfaith Dialogue – Religious clothing
A taste of Philosophy
A focus on war

Year 9, 10 and 11 students follow the AQA Short Course GCSE, Specification A (first examination 2018) which comprises:
Beliefs and Teachings in Christianity
Beliefs and Teachings in Islam
Relationships and Families
Religion, Peace and Conflict

Students will study the OCR course in Religious Studies which comprises 3 components, namely Philosophy of Religion, Ethics and Theology.

Philosophy of religion (code H173/H573/01): an introduction to ancient philosophical issues from Plato and Aristotle, the nature of the soul mind and body, arguments about the existence and non-existence of God, the nature of religious experience, the problem of evil, ideas about the nature of God and a study of religious language.

Ethics (code H173/H573/02): students will study normative ethical theories, and apply their knowledge to issues of importance such as euthanasia and business ethics. They will study ethical language and thought, debates surrounding the idea of conscience, then study the influence of ethical thought on sexual ethics.

Theology (code H173/H573/03): an exploration of human nature, death and the afterlife, the different ways in which God is known to theists, Christian moral principles, Christian moral action, pluralism within society, gender and society, gender and theology, secularism, liberation theology and Marx.
Each component is assessed by a 2 hour examination paper.