Key Stage 3 – Religious Education

Programme of study for KS3

The areas of study in Religious Education in KS3 are;

Where do we belong? [Community – Identity and Belonging]

Where can we find guidance? [Sacred books and revered literature]

What matters most? [Philosophy]

Throughout Key Stage 3, students extend their quest for personal meaning by seeking even deeper understanding of Christianity and the other principal religions in a local, national and global context. They extend their understanding of important beliefs, values, concepts and issues of truth and authority in religion. They apply their understanding of religious and philosophical beliefs, teachings and practices to a range of questions of belief and values with a focus on self-awareness, relationships, rights and responsibilities. They further develop their enquiry skills and explain some reasons for similarities and differences in religious beliefs and values. They advance the use of questioning in their learning. They interpret religious texts and other sources, recognising both the power and limitations of language and other forms of communication in expressing ideas and beliefs. They reflect on the impact of religion and belief in the world, and for themselves. They begin to consider religions in relation to each other and in relation to nonreligious ways of life, considering both the importance of interfaith dialogue and the tensions that exist within and between religions and beliefs. They develop their evaluative skills, showing reasoned and balanced viewpoints when considering their own and others’ responses to religious, philosophical and spiritual issues.

Students are assessed at the end of each unit of study.


Year 7 Year 8 Year 9

Belonging to a Religious Community.


The Church,

The Bible,




Religion and Science.

The origins of the universe.

Theories of creation.

Every Child Matters,

Festivals and celebrations



The Quran,





Good and Evil.


Examples of Good and Evil in Society,

Christian, Muslim and Hindu teachings on good and evil,

Personal response.

Making Positive contributions.

Drug awareness



10 Gurus,

The 5K’s and way of life,

Guru Granth Sahib,


Death and the Afterlife.

Life after death,

The soul,

Christian, Muslim and Hindu death rights,

Non-religious death rights.

Democracy and Justice,

10 Commandments

Right and wrong.

Political Systems.


The Buddha,

The eightfold path,




Religion in todays’ society

Demographics of UK,

Importance of religion,

Is religion relevant today?

Charity- The importance of giving.

Faith Leaders enquiry.



Existence of God,

Apostles creed,

Jesus human or divine.

Religion and the media.

Positive and negative stereotypes,

How God is portrayed in Media,

The power of the media.


A key element of RE is the focus it provides for pupils spiritual, moral, social and cultural development.

Promoting Spiritual, Moral, Social and Cultural Development

The Lancashire Agreed Syllabus for RE makes a clear and intended connection between RE and pupils spiritual, moral, social and cultural development.

The Contribution of RE to Pupils
Spiritual, Moral, Social and Cultural Development with Reference to the Lancashire RE Agreed Syllabuss Field of Enquiry.

The spiritual, moral social and cultural development of pupils in RE is connected to all four of the elements of the field of enquiry for RE, and centres on the exploration of the question what does it mean to be human?


Spiritual, Moral, Social and Cultural Development:

A distinctive contribution from RE

Marsden Heights Community College follows the Lancashire Agreed Syllabus for RE. This enables the teaching of RE to make a distinctive and significant contribution to these four aspects of pupils’ development.

Spiritual development enables people to look within themselves, at their human relationships, at the wider world and at their vision of the divine or the ultimate reality with characteristics such as courage, hope, acceptance, strength, insight, compassion and love, so that they can better face all the sufferings, challenges and opportunities of human life. Opportunities for spiritual development in the RE curriculum may occur through reflection on many aspects of the syllabus content, and enrich pupils understanding. RE makes a leading contribution to all aspects of spiritual education.

RE at Marsden Heights Community College provides opportunities to promote spiritual development through:

  • Discussing and reflecting on key questions of meaning and truth about such topics as the origins of the universe, life after death, good and evil, beliefs about God and human values such as justice, integrity, honesty and truth.
  • Learning about and reflecting on important concepts, experiences and beliefs that are at the heart of religious and other traditions of belief and practice.
  • Considering how beliefs and concepts in religion may be expressed through the creative and expressive arts and related to the human and natural sciences, thereby contributing to personal and communal identity.
  • Investigating and considering how religions and other world views perceive the value of human beings, and their relationships with one another, with the natural world, and with God.
  • Valuing relationships and developing a sense of belonging.
  • Enquiring into and developing their own views and ideas on religious and spiritual issues.

Moral development enables pupils to take an increasingly thoughtful view of what is right and wrong, to recognise the needs and interests of others as well as themselves and develop characteristics such as truthfulness, kindness, unselfishness and commitments to virtues such as integrity, justice and the will to do what is right. This can enable pupils to reflect on the value of living in ways that respect the well-being and rights of each person. Opportunities for moral development in the RE curriculum may occur through reflection on many aspects of the syllabus content, and enrich pupils understanding of how religions and beliefs handle moral questions and challenges. RE makes a particular contribution to attitudes that take moral issues, and moral dimensions of other issues, seriously.

RE provides opportunities to promote moral development through:

  • Enquiring into the values identified within the National Curriculum, particularly valuing diversity and enquiring into issues of truth, justice and trust
  • Exploring the influence of family, friends, society and media on moral choices and how society is influenced by beliefs, teachings, sacred texts and guidance from religious leaders
  • Considering what is of ultimate value to pupils and believers through studying the key beliefs and teachings from religion and philosophy about values and ethical codes of practice
  • Exploring the impact and consequences of actions and ideas for different groups of people within our society
  • Investigating a range of ethical issues, including those that focus on justice, to promote racial and religious respect and personal integrity
  • Considering the importance of rights and responsibilities and developing a sense of conscience.

Social development enables pupils to relate to others successfully through an understanding of the responsibilities and rights of being a member of various family, local, national and global communities. It enables them to develop social skills, qualities, attitudes and characteristics such as respectfulness, tolerance, and a willingness to get involved. This can help to enable pupils to play a full and fulfilling part in their community and society as, for example, family members, citizens, learners and workers. Opportunities for social development in the RE curriculum may occur through reflection on many aspects of the syllabus content, and enrich pupils understanding. RE makes a particular contribution to exploring and developing committed attitudes to social change for the well being of all.

RE provides opportunities to promote social development through:

  • Examining the social role of religion in bringing people together, building a sense of identity, encouraging community life and giving a context in which the challenges of human life can be met.
  • Exploring how religious community life works and the contributions community living makes to human well being.
  • Considering how religious and other beliefs lead to particular actions and concerns.
  • Investigating social issues from religious perspectives, recognising the diversity of viewpoints within and between religions as well as the common ground between religions.
  • Articulating pupils own and others ideas on a range of contemporary social issues.
  • Considering ways in which religion can contribute to the community cohesion or to the common good.

Cultural development enables people to develop their sense of their own place and identity in society and to value and participate creatively in their own culture and the cultures of others by developing their appreciation of the arts, sport, music, travel, tradition, custom and other aspects of culture. Cultural development contributes to human wellbeing through enabling participation in diverse cultural life, enriching both individuals and communities. Cultural development enables people to appreciate or participate in local, regional, national, European and global cultures. Opportunities for cultural development in the RE curriculum may occur through reflection on aspects of the syllabus content, and enrich pupils understanding. RE makes a particular contribution to open minded attitudes to cultural and religious diversity, and to the promotion of cultural enrichment.

RE provides opportunities to promote cultural development through:

  • Encountering people, literature, the creative and expressive arts and resources from differing cultures and religions.
  • Enquiring into the richness of local and national examples of cultural diversity in relation to religious ways of living.
  • Investigating the ways in which religion is embodied in culture, and exploring the relationships between religions and cultures.
  • Considering the relationship between religions and cultures and how religions and beliefs contribute to cultural identity and practices.
  • Promoting racial and inter faith harmony and respect for all, combating prejudice and discrimination, contributing positively to community cohesion.
  • Promoting awareness of how inter faith cooperation can support the pursuit of the common good.

What is the nature of RE?

RE develops pupils’ knowledge and understanding of, and their ability to respond to Christianity and the other principal religions presented in Great Britain. By exploring issues within and across faiths, pupils learn to understand and respect different religions, beliefs, values and traditions (including ethical life stances), and their influence on individuals, societies, communities and cultures.

Through the uses of distinctive language, listening and empathy, RE develops pupils’ skills of enquiry and response. RE encourages pupils to reflect on, analyse and evaluate their beliefs, values and practices and communicate their responses.

RE does not seek to urge religious beliefs on pupils by promoting one religion over another. RE is not the same as collective worship which has its own place within school life.

Key Stage 4

GCSE STUDY IN Religious Education

All the students will study a GCSE in Religious Education following the AQA examining board. The exams take place in May and June. This course is 100% exam. The examination takes place in the summer of the students’ Year 11. This consists of 2 one and a half hour papers.

Course content

Students will study 2 of the 6 units offered by the examination board. This consists of an in depth study of the 4 programmes of study. The exams offers students to answer questions from any of the 6 major world religions but are taught the course content in Christianity and Islam.

YEAR 10 Year 11
Pilgrimage In Islam and Christianity. Places of Worship
Religious Attitudes to Rich and

Poor in British Society

Religious Attitudes to the

Elderly and Death

Origins and Beliefs of major world religions Practices and Belonging and the way people live.
Religious Attitudes to Crime

and Punishment

Religious Attitudes to World


GCSE courses based on this the AQA specification encourages students to be inspired, moved and changed by a broad, satisfying and worthwhile course of study that challenges young people and equips them to lead constructive lives in

the modern world.

This specification enables candidates to:

  • adopt an enquiring, critical and reflective approach to the study of religion;
  • explore religions and beliefs, reflect upon fundamental questions, engage with them intellectually and respond personally;
  • enhance their spiritual and moral development, and contribute to their health and well being;
  • enhance their personal, social and cultural development, their understanding of different cultures locally, nationally and in the wider world to contribute to social and community cohesion;
  • develop their interest and enthusiasm for the study of religion, and relate it to the wider world;
  • reflect on and develop their own values, opinions and attitudes in light of their learning.