Skip to content ↓

Religious Studies

Course Information

Literacy ****
Numeracy **
Communications ****
Creativity **
Practical *
Group Work **
Examination Assessment 100%
Non Examination Assessment 0%
EBacc x
Examination Board AQA
Course GCSE

General Information

The AQA GCSE Religious Studies course is about life and the issues pupils will face when they leave education and go into the multi-ethnic, multi-faith society which is the contemporary United Kingdom. Never before has an understanding of worldwide political, moral and religious issues been more important.

The course involves a great deal of thinking and discussion, making pupils more aware of other people’s beliefs and helping them form their own opinions about the world.  It helps pupils to adopt an enquiring, critical and reflective approach to the study of religion. Religious Studies enables pupils to have a much greater and deeper understanding of themselves, empowering them with the insight and maturity needed to succeed in a global economy.

It also gives pupils the opportunity to explore religious and moral beliefs in a safe but questioning environment, so that they respect other people’s ideas while clarifying their own.

Religious Studies is not about making pupils ‘religious’.  It is about enabling pupils to think for themselves about issues from a religious and non-religious viewpoint.

Christianity and Islam are the two religions that will be focused on.

Religious Studies is recognised as an increasingly important qualification for all careers where working with people is a key element. It is valued in a wide variety of careers from journalism, law, politics, education, social work, medicine, acting, the Police force or the military.  It is a recognised academic qualification valued as much as other Humanities by the Russell Group universities.

What will I need to succeed?

Pupils who do well in and enjoy this subject generally:

  • Enjoy discussing their views and opinions;
  • Have an interest in learning about the views and opinions of other people from Different cultures and backgrounds;
  • Need to be able to see both sides of an argument;
  • Need to be able to remember key quotes and examples to support their opinions;
  • Have an enquiring, inquisitive mind;
  • Have an ability to think (and write down your thoughts) logically;
  • Have an interest in psychology – i.e. where people get their ideas from;
  • Have a love of argument and discussion;
  • Show a willingness to listen to other people’s point of view.

Assessment details

100% Exam – May 2025

Paper 1:  Religious beliefs and practices Paper 2: Thematic study
What’s assessed: 
  • Christian beliefs
  • Christian practices
  • Islamic beliefs
  • Islamic practices
What’s assessed: 
  • Religion and life
  • Religion, peace and conflict
  • Religion, crime and punishment
  • Families and relationships
How is it assessed: 
  • Written exam: 1 hour 45 minutes
  • 96 marks (plus 6 marks for spelling, punctuation and grammar (SPaG)
  • 50% of GCSE
How is it assessed: 
  • Written exam: 1 hour 45 minutes
  • 96 marks (plus 3 marks for spelling, punctuation and grammar (SPaG)
  • 50% of GCSE

What careers it can lead to after leaving Swanmore College

Prominent careers

Teaching, Civil Service, National Security, Diplomatic Service, Defence Industry, Human Rights, Law, Politics, Emergency Services: Police, Fire, Ambulance, Coastguard, Human resources.

RS with English

Advertising, Publishing, Journalism, Media, Broadcasting, Copywriting.

RS with Science

Medicine, Dentistry, Veterinary, Medical laboratories, Research & development.

RS with Maths

Banking, Business, Management, Retail.

RS with Geography

Pilot, Armed Forces, Aid agencies, Charity worker, Travel & Tourism.

RS with other subjects

Hospitality, Youth & Social Work, Councillor, Translators, Self-Employment, Office Administrators.