Learners who have an interest in the big questions in life, are accepting of a range of beliefs and approaches to life and who are passionate about voicing their own opinions opt to do Philosophy, Ethics and Religious Studies for GCSE and receive 300 minutes of session time over the two-week timetable. In the new specification learners are also required to do detailed studies into two religions. As a school we have chosen to look into
Christianty and Islam. Both will exams will equate to 25% of their final exam with Philosophy and Ethics making up the remaining 50%.

The course allows learners to explore, develop, enhance and change their views on a range of moral and philosophical questions facing the world and provides them with opportunities to hone their skills on independent thought and argument. By presenting learners with a range of both religious and non-religious approaches to these issues learners can develop an awareness and empathy around the views of others; equipping them with the ability to relate to people from different standpoints whilst affirming or questioning their own pre-conceived views. The main religion focused on at Honywood is Christianity and learners will grapple with interpreting bible scripture and applying it to support the beliefs and opinions in response to controversial statements. Learners will also spend 25% of the course exploring Islam. They will delve into the beliefs teachings and practices of the religion. The exam board currently used is OCR Religious Studies and learners will sit two exams in the summer of Cohort 11.

Learners will study


  • The Nature of God & The Holy Trinity
  • Concepts of God
  • Jesus
  • Importance of incarnation, crucifixion, resurrection and ascension
  • Role of the Church
  • Worship
  • Sacrament
  • Importance of Pilgrimage


  • Nature of Allah
  • Prophethood
  • Risalah
  • Books in Islam
  • Angels
  • Schatological beliefs and teachings
  • Life after Death
  • Public Acts of Worship
  • Hajj
  • Zakah & Sawm
  • Festivals/Special Days
  • Jihad

Philosophy and Ethics

  • Does God exist
  • What happens when we die
  • Does science replace the need for religion
  • What is Evil
  • Can God still exist when there is so much suffering?
  • Value of Life
  • Human Relationships
  • Medical Ethics
  • Capital Punishment
  • Justifications for War
  • Discrimination

Learners will then study a further 6 units in Cohort 10.  The aim for the final year of study is for learners to explore their 6 units of study in more depth and develop expertise in these as well as in their essay writing capabilities ready for the final summative exams at the end of cohort 11.