Carmel College, Prescot Road, St Helens, Merseyside, WA10 3AG

01744 452200

Philosophy and Religion

Philosophy and Religion

Carmel offers two separate courses: the new linear A Level in Philosophy & Religion (Religious Studies) and the AS/A2 Level in Philosophy.

Why choose Philosophy & Religion (Religious Studies) at Carmel?

This new linear A Level offers students the opportunity to explore key ideas, concepts, themes and practices within philosophy, ethics and religion. The first strand of the course involves the in-depth study of one religion (either Buddhism or Christianity), covering religious figures, sacred texts, religious life, social and historical developments, and religious identity. The second strand, Philosophy of Religion, involves the study of arguments for the existence of God; challenges to religious belief; and religious experience. The third strand considers whether we really have free will, and covers theories relating to ethical decision making.

The over-arching aim of the Philosophy & Religion course at Carmel is to help students to become knowledgeable and reflective, critical and creative thinkers - able to approach academic work and intellectual discourse confidently and effectively.

Comments from former students give a good idea of the appeal of Philosophy & Religion:
"I've enjoyed examining the whole question of right and wrong - when people say that you shouldn't use genetic engineering how do they know?"
"It's a subject that teaches you to analyse and to argue - it goes brilliantly with my other subjects, Psychology, Sociology and English."

Download the course leaflet click here

For the full exam specification visit

Why choose Philosophy at Carmel?

The AS/A2 Philosophy course is a new addition to the curriculum at Carmel. A demanding but very rewarding course, Philosophy explores a range of key branches within the discipline, including Epistemology (philosophy of knowledge); Philosophy of Mind; Moral Philosophy; and Philosophy of Religion. The course allows students the opportunity to nurture advanced skills of argument analysis and precision of thought. Complemented by independent study of primary texts, from Plato through to Descartes, students can expect lessons in which complex arguments are unpacked and evaluated - excellent preparation for the intellectual demands of higher level study.

"You've got to like thinking and you've got to enjoy asking questions - even be prepared for not knowing definite answers."

NB: There is very little overlap in terms of content for both of these courses. We anticipate there will be a number of students who choose to study both. There are merits to this and, in terms of university applications, students are at no disadvantage for having qualifications in both.

What our students say

Philosophy is a subject like no other. If you are looking for something to take you out of your comfort zone and challenge you then this is the subject for you. Philosophy is probably the most perplexing, yet interesting subject I have ever studied.
Lucy Brabin