Religious Education

Key Stage 4 Religious Studies

At Sir Jonathan North Girls’ College GCSE Religious Studies is a GCSE Option. Students that select RS as one of their option choices will have 5 lessons a fortnight and follow the two-year Eduqas GCSE Religious Studies course.

The two-year Eduqas GCSE Religious Studies course uses thematic topics to explore the way we make decisions and investigate different views on ethical dilemmas which impact on society today. Issues such as relationships; life after death; good and evil and human rights are investigated. In Year 11 students study the beliefs, teachings and practices of Christianity and Islam.

The course has three components:

  • Component 1: Religious, Philosophical and Ethical Studies in the Modern World (50% of final mark)
  • Component 2: Study of Christianity (25% of final mark)
  • Component 3: Study of Islam (25% of final mark)

Religious Studies provides opportunities for learners to understand more about the world, the religious challenges it faces and their place within it. Following this GCSE course will deepen understanding of religions and their effect on society. It develops students' competence in a wide range of skills and approaches and enables students to become religiously informed and thoughtful, engaged citizens.

The teachers within the Religious Studies department encourage all students to think critically, listen empathetically and write in a clear and concise manner- all valuable skills for later life. Students are encouraged to develop their own sense of identity and belonging enabling them to flourish individually within their communities and as citizens in a diverse society and global community.

Programme of Study

Year 10 Religious Studies

  • Issues of relationships: Family relationships, sexual relationships, marriage, changes in relationships and issues of equality
  • Issues of life after death:The world, the value of life, beliefs about death and the afterlife, issues about sanctity and quality of life and medical ethics
  • Christianity- Beliefs and teachings: the nature of God, Creation, Jesus Christ, Salvation, the afterlife
  • Islam- Beliefs and teachings: the nature of God, Creation, Holy books, Risalah, Akhirah

Year 11

  • Issues of good and evil:Good, evil, suffering, crime and punishment and forgiveness
  • Issues of human rights:Human rights, racial prejudice and discrimination, issues of wealth and poverty, issues of social justice and religion in the twenty-first century Britain
  • Christianity- Practices: Forms of worship, Sacraments, Pilgrimage, The Church in the local community, the worldwide Church
  • Islam- Practices: the Five Pillars of Islam, Greater and Lesser Jihad, festivals and commemoration, Sunni and Shi’a beliefs and practices


In each topic students will have a formative assessment. This will be a practice exam question based on the current content that they are studying in class. This could be in one of the three different styles of exam questions:

    • Question B: Describing a viewpoint or religious belief
    • Question C: Explaining the different attitudes between two religious beliefs
    • Question D: Examining in detail the different responses to a statement showing a clear, concise and justified conclusion


  • At the end of each topic students will have a summative assessment. This is where students will be asked to complete a previous exam paper on the topic that they have studied. This is a fantastic opportunity to engage not only with the content but also to practice crucial exam skills.

Extra-curricular opportunities: 

Students are given regular opportunities to speak to and meet visitors. Recent speakers have included a humanist, a Fairtrade farmer, students from Christian and Islamic Unions from Leicester University, a chaplain from Leicester Prison and a Holocaust Survivor. These experiences enrich student learning and understanding that religion is a living breathing relative organism and important in modern day society.