Contact: Mr Hughes – Head of Religious Education
“The primary purpose of Catholic Religious Education is to come to know and understand God’s revelation which is fulfilled in the person of Jesus Christ.”
Religious Education at Our Lady and St Bede Catholic Academy is at the heart of our school community and curriculum. Pope St John Paul II stated that Religious Education is the "core of the core curriculum" in a Catholic school and should play a central role in helping educate each individual student to discern the meaning of their existence. Religious Education Curriculum is an essential element of our pupil’s formation and personal development, which helps them attain a vital harmony between faith and culture. Religion shapes everyday life, from politics and art to law and international relations. Therefore, our Religious Education curriculum seeks to enable our pupil’s to become religiously literate and develop engaged young people, who have the knowledge, understanding and skills to reflect spiritually, and think ethically and theologically, and who understand the blessings of religious devotion in everyday life.
Course Structure & Overview
Key Stage 4 Curriculum
Exam Board: Eduqas
Syllabus: Route B
Paper 1: Fundamental Catholic Theology
Paper 2: Applied Theology
Paper 3: Judaism
This exciting and highly relevant new GCSE aims to develop learners’ knowledge of 2 main Abrahamic religions as well as non-religious beliefs such as atheism and humanism. Learner’s will experience knowledge of different beliefs, teachings and practices, sources of wisdom through key texts as well as a greater study of religious art and imagery. The subject develops learners’ ability to construct well-informed arguments with balance and structure providing further opportunities to engage in questions of belief, meaning, purpose, value and truth. It challenges learners to develop their own values and beliefs and contributes to their preparation for adult life in a pluralistic and global society.
GCSE Course Content
The GCSE is made up of three sections.
Paper 1: Fundamental Catholic Theology – 1 hour 30 minutes examination. 37.5% of GCSE
There are 2 themes to this first component which include Origins and Meaning and will cover creation, sources, forms of expression through painting, forms through symbolism and practices covering loving and serving. The second theme of this exam will cover the theme of Good and Evil. Topics for this element will focus on an understanding of trinity, incarnation, Jesus’ moral authority, sculpture and statuary and popular devotion.
Paper 2: Applied Catholic Theology – 1 hour 30 minutes examination. 37.5% of the GCSE
Again there are 2 themes to this second component. Theme 3 is on Life and death which covers eschatology, magisterium, artefacts, music and the funeral rite and prayer. Theme 4 is on the theme of sin and forgiveness which focuses on crime and punishment, redemption, Church, religious buildings, sacraments, mission and evangelisation.
Paper 3: Study of a World faith- Judaism – 1 hour examination. 35% of the GCSE
There are 2 themes to component 3. Beliefs of Judaism covering the topics of the nature of God, Messiah, covenant, life on earth and afterlife. The second theme is on practices and the areas of study include worship, the synagogue, rituals, daily life and festivals.
• Communication skills.
• Scriptural understanding (exegesis).
• Spiritual enrichment and understanding of another Abrahamic faith.
• Literacy, historical enquiry and artistic skills.
• Understanding the purpose of the individual and charity.
• Interpersonal skills through debate, argument and discussion
Upon completion of this two year course, students will have the skills and experience to progress onto A-level and beyond. Many of our students go on to study the subject at A Level. As many of the skills developed in the subject are transferable, they will also prove useful in vocational post-16 courses such as the armed services, the police service, social work and health professions as well as religious vocations such as chaplaincy, priesthood or other religious orders. Many employers value GCSE Religious Studies due to the variety of skills the subject develops and the enriching respect for the individual.
Future careers include teaching, armed services, police, health professions, chaplaincy, religious orders, social work and charity organisation work.