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Department Staff

Mrs A Boyle ( Head of Department)

Mrs F Mc Keever

Mrs A Mullan

Miss A Malone

Subject Information

The Religious Education Department is committed to the promotion of the spiritual and moral development of each student in conjunction with the pursuit of academic excellence.  There is a close relationship between Religious Education, the School Ethos and the Pastoral Care Programme.  The fostering of the student’s self-esteem, the development of self-respect and respect for others, as well as the promotion of rationality, responsibility and compassion, is central to the Department’s focus.

Religious Education is a compulsory subject at Key Stage 3 and 4.  RE enjoys a high profile both within and beyond the classroom, for example assemblies, liturgies, retreats, fundraising activities and community outreach projects.

Our Oratory provides an ambience of peace and calm, away from the pressures of our busy modern world.

Curriculum Information

Key Stage 3 (GCSE)

The Irish Catechetical Programme as published by Veritas is followed by all Key Stage 3 pupils.  As part of the Fully Alive programme, key themes such as morality, Advent, Christmas, Easter are revisited each year.  Over the course of the Key Stage, pupils are introduced to some critical matters in Christian belief which they learn to evaluate. 

Year 8 pupils start the course by learning about the Bible; they also study the sacraments of Baptism and the Eucharist.  Much of the year will be given over to learning about the World, Life and Ministry of Jesus. 

Year 9 students learn about the story of Creation, God’s covenant, Luke’s Gospel, the World of Judaism and Christianity today. 

Year 10 pupils learn about the sanctity of life and some challenges to this such as prejudice and discrimination.  They also learn about friendship with God and others, St. Paul and some key Muslim beliefs and practices.  In the final term, Mark’s Gospel is introduced to Year 10 students to prepare them for GCSE Religious Studies.

Key Stage 4 (GCSE/OCN)

Religious Studies is a compulsory subject at Key Stage 4. The GCSE Religious Studies (CCEA Specification) encourages students to develop an enquiring, critical and reflective approach.  They explore religion and beliefs, reflecting on and responding personally to fundamental questions.  This worthwhile course of study challenges young people and equips them to lead constructive lives in the modern world. 


GCSE Religious Studies:

Scheme of Assessment The scheme of Assessment is MODULAR.  There is NO coursework.

Written Examinations:  Compromises TWO papers – 1 hour 30 minutes each unit.

Year 11:  Students will study Unit 5 Christianity through a Study of the Gospel of Mark.  (50%)

The specification continues certain themes which are as follows:

  •  The Identity of Jesus

  • Jesus the Miracle Worker

  • The Kingdom of God

  • The Death and Resurrection of Jesus; and 

  • The Role and Nature of Christian Discipleship.

Year 12:  Students will study Unit 6 An Introduction to Christian Ethics.  (50%)

This unit aims to introduce students to ethics within the study of religion.  Students study the following themes:

  •  Personal and family issues,

  • Matters of life and death,

  • Developments in Bioethics,

  • Contemporary issues in Christianity

  • Modern Warfare.

Awarding Grade Students results will be reported on a nine grade scale:

A*, A, B, C, C*, D, E, F and G.


OCN NI Level II Certificate in Religious Studies

The OCN NI Level  Certificate in Religious Studies is designed for learners who wish to develop knowledge and understanding in religious studies in order to make sense of religious choices people make in today’s society. It is intended that learners will develop empathy, respect and awareness of other religious beliefs and cultural diversity. 


By continuous assessment through building a portfolio, learners will be more motivated and engaged to successfully complete the qualification.



Grading for this qualification is pass/fail.


Methods of Assessment

All evidence will be internally assessed by qualified Centre Assessors and Internally Verified by the approved Centres.  External Verification visits and monitoring activities will be conducted with Centres annually to confirm the evaluation of risk, assure the quality of assessment and compliance and to ensure the integrity of the qualification.


Structure and Content

In order to achieve the Level 2 Certificate learners must complete all units for a total of 15 credits. The Total Qualification Time (TQT) for this qualification is 150 hours. The minimum Guided Learning Hours (GLH) is 120.


OCN NI Units

  •  Addiction 

  • Charity and Religious Charities 

  • Exploring Personal Identity and Faith 

  • Exploring Religious Traditions within Own Community  

  • Life and Death Issues 

  • Life of a Famous Person of Faith 

  • Marriage and Divorce  

  • Prejudice and Reconciliation 

  • World Faith 

Key Stage 5 (GCE/A-Level)

The CCEA GCE Religious Studies specification offers an academic approach to the study of religion, ethics and philosophy.  It gives students opportunities to develop their knowledge and understanding of religion.  This specification is available at two levels: AS and A2.  Students take the AS units plus the A2 units for a full GCE A Level qualification.  The full Advanced GCE award is based on students’ marks from the AS (40 percent) and the A2 (60 percent).

For both AS level and A2, students complete two units from the following areas of study: Textual Studies, Systematic Study of One Religion, Religion and Ethics, and Philosophy of Religion. Students must study two of these units at AS level and a further two units at A2. Students must not choose two units from the same area of study.

AS Content

Systematic Study of One Religion

AS 6: An Introduction to Islam

Religion and Ethics

AS 7: Foundations of Ethics with Special Reference with Issues in Medical Ethics


Two 1 hour 20 minute external written examinations.  Students answer one from two questions in Section A and one from two questions in Section B.


Each paper is worth 50% of AS and 20% of A level

A2 Content

Systematic Study of One Religion

A2 6: Islam in a Contemporary Context

Religion and Ethics

A2 7: Global Ethics


Two 2 hour external written examinations. Students answer two from three questions in Section A and the compulsory synoptic question in Section B. 


Each paper is worth 50% of A2 and 30% of A level


  • Liturgy Group

  • Carmelite Monastery, Glenvale retreats for Year 8, 12, 13 and 14 students.

  • Pope John Paul II Award

  • Trócaire

  • Samaritans Purse Appeal

  • Christmas Hampers for SVP

  • Year 12 talk with members from Cuan Mhuire.

  • Living Youth diocesan links.

  • Dromore Diocesan Youth summer camp for years 8, 9 and 10.


Students studying Religious Studies have tended to follow careers in the following fields – Teaching, Law, Medicine, Accounting, Business Management, Journalism/Media, Nursing, Counselling, Humanities and Social Sciences.

Useful Links

GCSE Religious Studies Microsite

GCE Religious Studies Microsite

OCN NI Certificate in Religious Studies Specification

Social Media

The RE department often posts on Facebook about the retreats that we embark upon, the extracurricular religious activities that the students complete, and competitions that the pupils participate in that are related to their religious studies e.g. Year 8 Bible Design Competition. 

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