Skip to content ↓

GCSE Religious Education

Click the logo or link below if you would like to view the full course specification from the Exam Board website.

Exam Board Qualification Specification
AQA Exam Board - GCSE Religious Studies (4050) GCSE Religious Studies A 8062

The new syllabus offered at GCSE is more wide ranging than in previous years, offering a broader understanding of 2 religions, as well as studying a range of moral and philosophical issues. The aim of the RE GCSE is to build on the skills they have learnt in KS3, such as evaluating moral arguments and understanding issues from several points of view.  This ability to be able to understand many sides to an argument makes the RE GCSE ideal as a starting point for many careers, such as journalism, law, the medical profession and teaching.

The topics covered are divided into the following two categories:

1. A study of Christianity and Buddhism
This section looks in depth at the core beliefs of both Christianity and Buddhism.  The course looks at the key beliefs and teachings of these two religions, along with their worship and festivals.

2. Religious, philosophical and ethical studies
This topic covers 4 areas of study:
• Religion and life: this looks at the origins and value of the universe and human life.
• The existence of God and revelation: this looks at the philosophical arguments for and against the existence of God and the nature of the divine and revelation.
• Religion, peace and conflict:  this looks at religion, violence, terrorism and war, along with religion and belief in 21st century conflict.
• Religion, crime and punishment:  this looks at religion, crime and the causes of crime, along with religion and punishment.

There is a strong emphasis in both of these sections on evaluating issues, where students will need to be able to express their opinions, as well as understanding other points of view.  These are obviously invaluable skills which are needed in a wide range of fields.


Assessment in Religious Studies is not tiered, so all students take the same exam papers and are able to achieve the highest grade possible for them.

There is no coursework. 100% of the mark is based on two written examinations, with 50% of the marks allocated to each paper.  These will all be sat in the June of Year 11.

Other Information

The GCSE classes are taught in mixed ability groups.

For more information please speak to Ms K Stevenson