Edexcel A Level in Religious Studies
The Religious Studies A level is divided into 3 parts, Religion (Islam), Philosophy and Ethics.
The Philosophy section looks at the very first ideas about what God was like from the ancient Greeks and the early Jews/Christians. It then looks at classical arguments to prove that God exists such as the argument from design - the world is too complex to have happened by chance and so must have been designed by God, and the argument from cause - everything has a first cause which must be God. In contrast you will then look at arguments to prove that God does not exist such as the problem of evil - if God exists, why do people suffer, and the problem of science - how does God fit in with evolution.
The Ethics section looks at what we mean by right and wrong and why something may be right for one person but not for another, where do we get our morals from and the influence of society on our values and morals. You will look at Utilitarianism - doing the greater good for the greater number and Natural Moral law - the idea that God has set down laws for us to follow. Ethical theories are then applied to modern issues such as genetic engineering, abortion, euthanasia and war and peace.
The Islam Component will explore the origins of Islam and what it means to be a Muslim, both in the past and in modern times. Students will study the life of Muhammad (pbuh) and why the way he lived is still important to Muslims today, key Muslim beliefs, and the relationships Muslims have with Allah. Students will also research texts from the Quran and investigate how Muslims use the Quran to make moral decision. Once students have developed a deep understanding of Islamic beliefs and practices they will explore how these beliefs and practice differ between Sunni, Shiah and Sufi Muslims, and how they relate to modern day issues such as Muslim attitudes towards Jews and Christians, family, money, sex and divorce.
By the end of the course students will have a deep understanding of what motivates Muslims, and what they hope to achieve from life. They will be able to recognise and understand the similarities and differences between believers in Islam and believers in other faiths, and have a greater appreciation of the variety and diversity that different religions bring to the world we live in.
Specific entry requirements for this course are as follows:
You should have at least a minimum of grade 4 in GCSE Religious Studies. You will also need a 5 grade in English.
Exam specification - https://qualifications.pearson.com/en/qualifications/edexcel-a-levels/religious-studies-2016.coursematerials.html#filterQuery=Pearson-UK:Category%2FTeaching-and-learning-materials