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Carshalton High School for Girls

Carshalton High School for Girls

Carshalton High School for Girls is a highly successful school, judged by Ofsted in November 2017 as ‘Good’ in all categories.

Philosophy in the Sixth Form

A Level Philosophy & Ethics

Option 1: OCR Religious Studies

The qualification you receive is in Religious Studies, but the content of the course is very different to GCSE Religious Studies. The A Level specification is divided into three, equally weighted areas and modules are assessed in three 120-minute papers at the end of Upper Sixth which are two hours long. Students write three essays worth 40 marks each. 

Philosophy of Religion: 

  • Ancient philosophical influences
  • The nature of the soul, mind and body
  • Arguments about the existence of non-existence of God - The nature and impact of religious experience
  • the problem of evil religious language
  • ideas about the nature of God - issues in religious language

Religion and Ethics: 

  • Normative ethical theories (i.e. Kantian Ethics/Utilitarianism)  
  • The application of ethical theory to two contemporary issues (Business Ethics and Euthanasia)  
  • Ethical language and thought  
  • Debates surrounding the significant idea of conscience  
  • Sexual ethics and the influence on ethical thought of developments in religious beliefs  

Developments in Christian Thought: 

  • The person of Jesus  
  • Christian moral principles and Christian moral action  
  • Augustinian theology  
  • Knowledge of God’s existence  
  • Religious pluralism in theology and society  
  • Gender in both society and theology  
  • The challenge of secularism  
  • The theology of liberation  

Option 2: AQA Philosophy 

The qualification you receive is in Philosophy. The specification is divided into two equally weighted areas of study. There are two exam papers at the end of Upper Sixth which are three hours long. There are five questions under each section, ranging from 3-25 marks.  

Paper 1: Epistemology and moral philosophy 


  • What is knowledge? 
  • Perception as a source of knowledge
  • Reason as source of knowledge - The limits of knowledge 

Moral philosophy: 

  • Normative ethical theories (Utilitarianism, Kantian Ethics, Aristotelean Virtue Ethics)  
  • Applied ethics (stealing, simulated killing, eating animals, telling lies)  -            Meta ethics (realism and anti-realism)  

Paper 2: The metaphysics of God and the metaphysics of mind 

The metaphysics of God: 

  • The concept and nature of ‘God’
  • Arguments relating to the existence of God 
  • The problem of evil -         Religious language 

The metaphysics of mind: 

  • What do we mean by ‘mind’?  
  • Dualist theories (substance and property dualism)  
  • Physicalist theories (mind/brain identity)  
  • Functionalism