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The key outcomes of the 2015 A level results in England and Wales for Religious Education are as follows:
The contextual evidence shows the growing status of RS as a subject for Higher Education entry:
Comment from Daniel Hugill, Chair, National Association of Teachers of RE (NATRE):
“Congratulations to the many students receiving their Religious Studies results today. The grades they have achieved are the product of their hard work grappling with some of the most difficult questions to ever puzzle humankind. Thanks are due to their teachers, too, who have worked tirelessly to ensure that their students can reach their full potential.
These students, and teachers, will tell you that A level RS is certainly not an easy option. As the research from Durham University proves, it is more challenging than some of the so-called ‘facilitating’ subjects, and universities are recognising this fact. A-level RS helps to equip students with the skills, knowledge, and attitudes necessary to succeed in modern Britain.”
Comment from Joyce Miller, Chair, Religious Education Council of England and Wales (REC):
“No one should be surprised to see how popular Religious Studies A level has become. Pupils want to study the subject because it allows them to explore crucial questions in relation to beliefs, values and morality, and contributes to their preparation for living in a multi-faith, multi-cultural world. It also provides an excellent foundation for further study in a range of academic subjects, not limited to theology, religious studies and philosophy, and remains a very attractive qualification to universities. Pupils and their teachers deserve congratulations for this impressive set of results.”
Religious Studies A-level pupils explain why they chose the subject:
“I chose RS at A level for a couple of reasons. One being I did quite well at GCSE. Also In this day and age, as we live in a somewhat ignorant society, it’s important to understand other cultures and religions, and break down the negative stereotypes portrayed by the media. I also enjoy debating in moral and religious arguments and in my course there were plenty of opportunities to do so.”
“I chose A level Religious Studies because it develops and nurtures a range of skills that are useful across so many subjects: critical analysis, evaluation, exploring contexts, detailed explanation, conceptual development and many more.”
“I took Religious Studies at AS level because other people’s opinions on ethical issues and philosophical ideas fascinate me. I love learning about theories from different thinkers and applying them to ethical situations. The subject has also taught me a wide variety of skills, from essay writing to analysing different conceptual ideas. You also learn to argue from different perspectives which can help you see the bigger picture.”
“I chose A Level Religious Studies because it is such an intriguing and rewarding subject, where no question is out of bounds.”
Colin Hallmark / Harriet Johnson, 3:nine Communications
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Numbers of A level entries in arts, humanities and social sciences in England and Wales by selected subject area, 2003 to 2015
National Association of Teachers of RE
NATRE is the subject teacher association for RE professionals in primary and secondary schools and higher education, providing a representative voice at national level and publications and courses to promote professional development. NATRE’s Executive consists of a majority of serving teachers from primary and secondary schools who are elected for a three-year term of service.
Religious Education Council of England and Wales
Established in 1973, the Religious Education Council of England and Wales (REC) brings together over 60 national organisations. These comprise academic and professional associations specialising in religions and religious education, as well as individual religion and belief organisations inclusive of the range of faith communities found nationally, including the British Humanist Association.