GCSE Religious Studies
At New College we use the AQA syllabus (Religious Studies A) and learn about Christianity and Buddhism.
We also look at how beliefs influence people’s moral decisions about relationships, crime and punishment, violence, war, peace, social justice, human rights and poverty. If you are buying a textbook to support you, make sure it is for the AQA syllabus A and covers Christianity and/or Buddhism. https://www.aqa.org.uk/subjects/religious-studies/gcse-religious-studies-textbooks-print-and-digital
Most students find a Buddhism textbook especially helpful. But all the information you need will be in the course workpacks and other course materials and there are books in the college library (LRC) too.
Buddhism: Most of our students don’t really know much about Buddhism before starting this course. You can find out some more about Buddhism using this website:
Answer these questions using this website and bring them in to your first class:
1. Do Buddhists believe in a God?
2. Who started Buddhism?
3. Where and when was he born?
4. What was his life like when he was young?
Christianity: During the first part of the course we focus on finding out about Christianity. After that we can find out about how Christian beliefs and other beliefs influence attitudes to social and ethical issues in the UK today and get started on learning about Buddhism.
Find out some more about Christianity using this website:
https://www.bbc.co.uk/bitesize/clips/zvhyr82 and hand in your answers at the start of the course.
5.. How long ago did Christianity start?
6.. Who started Christianity?
7. What do Christians believe about him?
8. How do Christians find out about his life?
Going further: You could make a timeline of the life of the Buddha and/or the life of Jesus.
Some frequently asked questions about the course:
Q. What’s the point of doing Religious Studies GCSE?
It could help you to go on to study a range of A levels such as Religious Studies (at New College, we study Buddhism at A level too, so the GCSE will really helpl), History, Government & Politics or Sociology or other Level 3 courses.
It will also help you if you are looking at working in a range of jobs such as youth work, the police, teaching, care work or any job where understanding a bit more about what different people believe will be useful.
You will learn critical and analytical skills and how to write an evaluative essay. You will be supported in your learning with a wide range of activities.
Q. Do I have to be religious to study this?
You do not need to be religious to enjoy this course! It will help you understand more about how religion and belief shape the society we live in.
During the course you will learn more about articulating your own views on issues and listening carefully to the different views of others.