Philosophy, Religion and Ethics

Exam Board: AQA


Course Content:

Philosophy, Religion and Ethics is a popular course which considers a range of issues and questions. It is linear so all examined content takes place at the end of the course.


Ethics - is the study of ‘right and wrong’ and considers a range of ethical theories and their strengths and weaknesses. These are then applied to issues such as embryo research, cloning and voluntary euthanasia. The studied ethical theories are also applied to the use of animals in intensive farming and ‘designer babies’.   The second year of the course will explore further different teleological and deontological ethical theories. The course also investigates the issues of ‘freewill and determinism’ and ‘conscience.’


Religion - is the study of beliefs, practices and values from a world faith. For the purpose of this course we will be exploring topics such as ‘wisdom and authority’, ‘life after death’ and ‘God’ from a Christian perspective.  Year 2 of the course will focus on gender and sexuality within Christianity, the relationship between science and Christianity and religious pluralism.


Philosophy of Religion - considers ultimate questions such as ‘Does God exist?’ and ‘why is there evil and suffering in the world?’ In Year 1 students study several arguments for the existence of God, such as ‘The Cosmological Argument’ and ‘The Design Argument.’ Students can question beliefs surrounding the purpose and meaning of life, the existence of evil and suffering in the world and the validity of religious experiences.  Year 2 topics include ‘miracles’, ‘self, death and the afterlife’ and ‘religious language.’


There is also a further ‘Dialogues’ section of the course where synoptic links have to be made between all aspects of Year 1 and Year 2 study. This allows students to explore how Christian beliefs have been influenced and developed by philosophical and ethical studies.



100% Examination – 2 papers

Paper 1 – Philosophy of religion and Ethics – 3hours

Paper 2 – Study of religion and Dialogues – 3 hours


Career Opportunities:       

This is an excellent course for developing important skills of analysis and evaluation. It encourages students to critically evaluate and engage with a variety of scholars. These skills are necessary for a whole range of courses in higher education including some Science courses with an ethical focus. University courses in Medicine, Law, Teaching, Politics, and Journalism all benefit from this qualification.


All universities respect and value Religious Studies A Level.


Entry Requirements:

Minimum Grade 6 is required in Religious Studies and Grade 6 in English or History. Students who have not studied the subject at GCSE will be welcome.