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Stewards Academy

Stewards Academy

Science Specialist

Religious Studies

Subject Intent

Religious Studies is a rigorous and demanding academic discipline, that encourages those studying it to develop critical thinking in the search for truths with uncertainty. It encourages philosophical thought, decision making skills, collaboration and independent working skills whilst understanding why a faith acts and beliefs in certain customs. It creates opportunities for young people to develop their skills of dialogue, interpretation and analysis in a whilst also developing their ability to synthesis text and understand hard hitting issues that arise in our everyday lives. All these are vital skills in contemporary British society, where communication, collaboration and cooperation are core skills. Religious Studies aims to extend pupils thinking and challenge stereotypes within society, whilst allowing a safe environment for young people to delve deeper into their own beliefs and ways of thinking.


Within Religious Studies we aim to ensure that all pupils:

  • Develop a lifelong love of learning
  • Develop a knowledge and understanding of religious and non-religious beliefs and values.
  • Experience challenge and enjoyment.
  • Develop a sense of self and desire to explore both their own faith and others.
  • Develop their ability to communicate information and synthesise key elements that can be shared with others.
  • Reflect upon their learning and develop their own beliefs and attitudes towards modern day society.
  • Develop lifelong values based upon reason and experiences.

Key Stage 3

In Year 7 pupils are introduced to the six major world religions: Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, Islam, Judaism and Sikhism. In the Autumn term pupils learn about the key beliefs, festivals and practices. In the Spring term pupils learn about religion and death then worship. Finally, in the Summer term pupils learn about religious texts and matters of the soul.

In Year 8 pupils study religion and life focusing on philosophical questions. In the second half if the Autumn term they study prejudice and historical figures. In the Spring term the focus is Religion, Peace and Conflict. Finally, in the Summer term pupils will study Crime and Punishment followed by Evil and Suffering.

Year 7 Unit Titles

Year 8 Unit Titles

  • Major religions: Christianity, Buddhism and Judaism
  • Major religions: Islam, Hinduism and Sikhism
  • Religion, Life and Death
  • Worship
  • Code Breakers: religious texts, images and symbols.
  • The Soul
  • Religion and Life
  • Prejudice and historical figures
  • Religion, Peace and Conflict
  • Crime and Punishment
  • Evil and Suffering


Pupils have knowledge organisers for each topic and are expected to use these to revise for tests in class every fortnight.

Pupils have an assessment every term and are expected to complete research to support their in class studies.

Key Stage 4

Pupils follow the AQA GCSE Religious Studies course in which they complete two components of study. Pupils study the beliefs and worship of two of the world’s major religions (Christianity and Buddhism) alongside four thematical studies. Pupils will cover the following Thematic:

  • Religion and life
  • Relationships and families 
  • Religion, crime and punishment
  • Religion, peace and conflict

Paper 1  Study of Religion (50%)

This unit is made up of two sections. Each section aims to cover one religion and focus on developing a critical understanding of their beliefs, teachings and practices. Pupils will be encouraged to develop an understanding of key religious content that aims to enhance their thinking skills. Whilst focusing on two religions, pupils will be expected to develop an understanding of basic concepts and begin to link them together and develop their knowledge and understanding of religious and non-religious beliefs, such as atheism and humanism. Pupils will also consider religious beliefs, teachings and sources of wisdom and authority, through their reading of key religious texts, other texts and scriptures of the religions they are studying.

How will it be assessed:

  • Exam: Section A: Study of religion (Christianity, 51 marks)
  • Exam: Section B: Study of religion (Buddhism, 51 marks)
  • Total: 102 marks
  • Time: 1 hour 45 minutes


Paper 2 Thematic Studies - Philosophy, Ethics or Textual Studies (50%)

This unit offers a choice of topics through which the themes of relationships, life, peace, conflict, crime, punishment and human rights are developed. It builds upon the knowledge and skills previously acquired in component one. These skills are then linked to the philosophical and ethical values with religious views and opinions. Pupils are encouraged to reflect on and develop their own values, beliefs, meanings, purposes, truths and their influence on human life. Additionally, we support pupils to develop and think about their own values, beliefs and attitudes in the light of what they have learnt and contribute to their preparation for adult life in a pluralistic society and global community. The course aims to enhance pupils’ ability to construct well-argued, well-informed, balanced and structured written arguments, demonstrating their depth and breadth of understanding of the subject. Within this component pupils are required to answer questions on 4 topics.

How will it be assessed:

  • Exam: Thematical Studies (Life, Family, Crime and Conflict 102 marks)
  • Total: 102 marks
  • Time: 1 hour 45 minutes


Please provide a brief description of the departments homework policy for pupils at KS4

Pupils are set an exam question every fortnight. The exam question is planned in class then completed at home. Pupils also complete their knowledge organisers on a weekly basis to support the study of each unit.