Philosophy & Ethics Faculty
Mr P Chapman
Mrs R Cummings (Year 13 only)
For more details on our Philosophy & Ethics curriculum, please contact PChapman@leaf.bournemouth.sch.uk or 01202 578886 ext. 0204
The educational purpose of Philosophy and Ethics is to provide students with the necessary skills to thrive in a multicultural progressive society. Students of this topic will enhance their awareness and understanding of various cultures, religions, values, traditions and perspectives. This will enable them to discuss and explore a range of crucial current issues sensitively, demonstrating tolerance, respect and flexibility of thought.
For this purpose, students will initially learn about two religious outlooks. This will include beliefs, teachings and practices of Christianity and Buddhism as well as their impact on society. Following this they will use the knowledge they have obtained to explore the religious, philosophical and ethical dimensions of various themes and topics. The chosen themes are Relationships and Families, The Existence of God and Revelation, Religion, Crime and Punishment and Religion, Peace and Conflict.
Common philosophical questions will occur frequently, either directly or indirectly, in the context of these topics, including: the ultimate meaning and purpose of life, beliefs about God, the self, the nature of reality, issues of right and wrong and what it means to be human.
The current issues that we will focus on are quite challenging, thought provoking and sensitive, often leading to heated classroom debates. By using their knowledge of religions and societal attitudes to discuss these topics, students will develop a range of skills enabling them to analyse, interpret, evaluate, and reflect on issues and to apply their knowledge to real life situations.
The AQA specification has been chosen because it includes all of the major world religions and it offers six contemporary ethical themes to choose from, ensuring that our students have a number of exciting subjects to study. This examination board is dedicated to enabling pupils to develop their attitudes towards contemporary religious and secular issues, by challenging them with questions about belief, values, meaning, purpose and truth. In this context they will develop analytical and critical thinking skills, the ability to work with abstract ideas, leadership and research skills that will help them prepare for further study and are important in all workplace environments.
Students will study for the GCSE exams according to the AQA board. They will be required to write two papers at the end of their studies.
• The first written exam will be on the beliefs, teachings and practices of Christianity and Buddhism. It will last 1 hour and 45 minutes giving a maximum of 96 marks, plus 6 marks for spelling punctuation and grammar, and will account for 50% of the GCSE result. Each religion assessed has a common structure of two five-part questions of 1, 2, 4, 5 and 12 marks.
• The second paper will focus on the four themes which were discussed in lessons in the context of Christianity. Students will have 1 hour and 45 minutes to complete this exam, achieving a maximum of 96 marks, plus 3 marks for spelling, punctuation and grammar, which will account for 50% of the GCSE result. Each of the four themes assessed has a common structure of one five-part question of 1, 2, 4, 5 and 12 marks.