Religious Studies

Course aims

To provide an understanding of the philosophical and ethical foundations of religious belief.

Entry requirements

You will require a grade 6 in English language and a grade 5 in a humanities subject (preferably R.E), in addition to the general entry requirements.

Course content

Unit 1 – Philosophy of Religion

Topics include:

  • Ancient philosophical influences
  • The nature of the soul, mind and body
  • Arguments about the existence or non-existence of God
  • The nature and impact of religious experience
  • The challenge for religious belief of the problem of evil
  • Ideas about the nature of God
  • Issues in religious language.

Unit 2 – Religion and ethics

Topics include:

  • Normative ethical theories
  • The application of ethical theory to two contemporary issues of importance
  • Ethical language and thought
  • Debates surrounding the significant idea of conscience
  • Sexual ethics and the influence on ethical thought of developments in religious beliefs.

Unit 3 – Developments in religious thought

Topics include:

  • Religious beliefs, values and teachings, their interconnections and how they vary historically and in the contemporary world
  • Sources of religious wisdom and authority
  • Practices which shape and express religious identity, and how these vary within a tradition
  • Significant social and historical developments in theology and religious thought
  • Key themes related to the relationship between religion and society in the context of Christianity.

Course assessment

Written examinations.


OCR textbooks can be loaned from the library.


Higher Education, teaching and social work.