Ethics and Philosophy

Ethics and Philosophy in Your World:

In Ethics and Philosophy our ambition is for all students, by the end of Key Stage Three, to have learned about a wide range of beliefs and cultures from the Ancient World to Modern Britain and the rest of the World. They will consider beliefs and values that are common to all people, those which relate only to those who hold religious beliefs and those beliefs which are specific to the six main World Religions. Non-religious beliefs are also studied and valued. In taking this approach, students have the opportunity to develop both broad and very specific knowledge and understanding of the diverse peoples of our World.

They will learn how to identify similarities and differences between beliefs, also developing a strong sense of self and of others. They will understand the impact of beliefs on individuals, and on local, national and global communities. They will learn to construct supported, reasoned arguments and how to understand and value the views of others, whilst challenging them when necessary.

Our curriculum is structured to encourage students to reflect on core beliefs and experiences of what it means to be human, developing into studies of different belief systems with ancient pasts, right up to the present day. By studying in this way, they will be able to develop a knowledge base starting from their own personal experience and growing into a much broader understanding of peoples’ different experiences over time and around the World. They will read about personal experiences, sources of wisdom and academic works written by a wide range of people over a long period of time. Through this reading they will better understand the human experience. They will also understand the value of working hard, being kind and avoiding excuses as they learn to take personal responsibility for their actions and recognise the significance of the actions of others.

Students choosing Ethics follow the popular EDUQAS course in Ethics and Religion. They study how ethical issues affect relationships, are reflected in the Human Rights agenda, lead to and resolve conflict and can be applied to the concepts of Good and Evil. Students also study Christianity and Judaism, developing their knowledge and understanding of religious beliefs, teachings and practices. An enquiry based approach is adopted and students seek to answer questions such as ‘If God is all knowing, all powerful and all kind, why is there suffering in the World?’ Their range of responses is always interesting.

Learning prepares students for GCSE examinations as well as learning for cultural enrichment and its own sake. Students are asked to demonstrate knowledge of basic concepts, describe real life situations, beliefs or features and to explain people’s actions or beliefs. They use reasoned ethical and religious arguments to explore issues such as the existence or otherwise of God; the moral issues involved in Euthanasia and attitudes towards same sex marriage. The subject material covered at GCSE is drawn from a rich range of issues affecting all types of people living in modern Britain and elsewhere.