SR006: The Pale Blue Dot – Karl Rahner, Space Exploration and the Overview Effect – Wright

This project examines whether Karl Rahner’s anthropological approach to theology is a useful lens through which to view the curiosity inherent in our investigation of the universe.  Are human spaceflight and robotic exploration and the solar system a manifestation of the search for God? And what of White’s Overview Effect, the cognitive shift occurring in observation of the earth during spaceflight?  How can we use images from space to encourage deeper engagement with today’s pressing existential and theological questions such as the urgent issues of environmental awareness and the fragility of our planet;  in Sagan’s words, this Pale Blue Dot?

TT459: Bringing Anthropology to Religious Education – Jennings

I was very disappointed when anthropology was axed as an A level in Michael Gove’s educational reforms, (described by the Guardian as ‘cultural barbarism’) just as I was just introducing it into my Methodist independent school in Yorkshire.  It had received an incredibly positive response across the school community.  The course was diverse, interesting to students, and offered the opportunity for independent research, which many subjects didn’t. This project gave me the opportunity to see how the work I had done to prepare for the A level could be resurrected and used for the benefit of RE.  With pandemic, economic inequality, […]

TT404: A Triad of Possibilities by Julie Easton

In England, around one person in every hundred is on the autism spectrum.  Autism is the primary need for 27% of pupils with an Education and Health Care Plan (EHCP) and more than 70% of children on the autism spectrum in England attend mainsteam schools. One subject where I have noticed these children have more difficulty than others is RE.  The concepts are often abstract and they are asked to think about other people’s points of view and emotions, neither of which are skills that come easily to them.  Through this scholarship I wanted to investigate two things: How does […]

SR05: Life, Death and Beyond – Gateways and Resources at A2 by J Stephen Lightfoot

Recently, the emphasis of this topic on the AQA RS syllabus changed from a multi-faith to a multi-worldview perspective, with secular/scientific understandings receiving equal prominence to those of religion. Having talked to colleagues and attended training days, I am aware that many teachers are unsure how to access and teach these new aspects of the course. The purpose of this research is to explore entry points, and suggest information and materials that enhance delivery of these themes.

SR01: The Tension between Scientism and Postmodernism by Adrian Brown

The author examines scientism and postmodernity with an eye to the future of Religious Education, particularly at sixth form level. He starts with reviews of 4 new books on postmodernism, the first 2 focusing on the interaction of postmodernism and Christian thought and the second pair on education and postmodernity. He progresses to an examination of the way world views influence our theories about the origin and development of the world looking at the science-religion debate as seen in the book he co-authored with Sue Hookway and Mike Poole called ‘God Talk, Science Talk’. Includes a useful Bibliography on science, […]

SR02: Probability and Theistic Explanation: Some Introductory Remarks by Paul Elliott

A detailed analysis of both theistic and atheistic interpretations of the mystery of the universe. Starts with a look at Scientific Theism with its teleological underpinnings, which provides a religious interpretation of the existence, form and content of the universe. The teleological or so-called ‘Design Argument’ over the creation of the universe is seen as an internally complex ‘probability argument’ reflecting human experience of the whole cosmos-hence the title of the Report. Several key figures are referred to including Einstein, Pascal and Swinburne. The author’s conclusion is that the universe invites both religious and naturalistic interpretations, yet maintains its inscrutable […]

SR03: Darwin and the Death of God by Reg Luhman

Examines Darwin’s discovery of evolution and his theories of the origin of life and the survival of the fittest. Considers Richard Dawkins’ notion of the ‘selfish gene’ and creationism. Includes Christian views of the biblical account of creation. Looks at the fossil records and the theories of a variety of scholars on this complex subject including reference to the so-called ‘missing link’ theory. Concludes with reference to science and the interpretation of Genesis and in particular the accident versus design argument

SR04: Fanning the Flames of Faith by Theresa Fong

Introduction “Fanning the Flames of Faith,” is a study of how Catholic schools, within the United Kingdom remain authentic to the faith in secularised times. Although reflective of Catholic schools in general, the research and recommendations within this report can be applied to schools of any faith affiliation. It is also important to note that even though the study was undertaken in 2010, the inspiration behind it harked back to 2002, when a significant decline was noted in the number of families practicing the faith, within the author’s (here after referred to in the first person) workplace and parish communities(1980 […]