The starting point of Religious Studies is the belief that religion has been and continues to be a significant influence on the way that the world has developed, and that these influences have affected societies and individuals alike, for good and for bad. It is therefore impossible to have a full understanding of either the historical or modern world without an understanding of religion: the creeds that underpin a religious worldview, and the practices that illustrate these beliefs.

During the first three years at Oundle, pupils are introduced to a range of belief systems as diverse as Animism and Buddhism. For IGCSE, pupils focus for half the paper on Islam and Christianity, and for the other half on Ethics and Philosophy. For Sixth Form study we have chosen to offer the Pre-U 'Philosophy and Theology' paper which develops the IGCSE course and goes into more depth on the philosophical, theological and ethical theories that have shaped Western society.

The Sixth Form Philosophy and Theology society regularly invites speakers to talk on a range of subjects. Recent speakers have been Dr Hugh Burling of Cambridge University on 'When should I believe in something I can't see?', and Professor Sir Ghillean Prance on 'The Ethics of Climate Change'. The department runs a bi-annual trip to Istanbul for Fourth and Fifth Form pupils, as well as a joint trip with the Spanish department to Northern Spain. We also run day trips to Walsingham, Peterborough mosque, and the London Jewish Museum.

Mr B Deane
Head of Department