Course at a glance

Examining Board: Edexcel
Next Examination Period: May/June 2024
Exam Specification Code: 8RSO
Coursework Element: None
Practical Element: None
Course Fee Includes: Online course materials and tutor support. Additional materials available at extra cost.


The topics which will be studied are Old Testament, New Testament and development in ways of reading and understanding scripture.

The Advanced GCE specification requires students to demonstrate a wide range and depth of knowledge and understanding, a maturity of thought and expression and developed analytical skills.

AS Level Religious Studies Entry Requirements

Although the AS Level Religious Studies programmes build on the course content of GCSE, it is not necessary to have this qualification before undertaking an AS Level. However, in order to meet the demands of the course, it is recommended that candidates have literacy and communication skills equivalent to C or higher at GCSE. Please note that full tutor support is still provided throughout your course duration.

All students must be 16 years of age or above.

Course Duration

1 year.

Study Hours Required

Approximately 150 hours.

Awarding Body

Pearson Edexcel

Edexcel A Levels are available for study anywhere in the world. Examinations can be taken at any registered examination centre in the world. It is recommended students check with examining centres that the chosen exam is available.

Examination Information

Students are required to arrange and pay for their examinations and manage the course work element if the subject requires this. Students must check the relevant examination board website for further information and final examination sitting dates for the specification.

All examinations are held during the May / June exam period of every year.

AS Level Religious Studies course consists of two units:

  • Unit 1 – RSS06: Old Testament Unit F
  • Unit 2 – RSS07: New Testament Unit G

The AS Units

Unit 1 : Old Testament

This unit explores the world of the Old Testament, God’s relationship with his people and the importance of prophecy

Students must answer two questions from a choice of three

1. An introduction to the world of the Old Testament:
Through studying Exodus 15-16, I Samuel 8-10 and I Kings 1817-46 students will gain knowledge and understanding of the life of pre-exilic Israel. Focus will be made to the period in the wilderness, the development of nationhood and the search for a king. Prophetic warnings and the anointing of Saul and how the Israelite nation established itself in the land of the Canaanites with reference to its continuing struggle will also be studied.

2. Old Testament views of God’s relationship with the people:
Through studying Genesis 17, 221–18 and Exodus 19-20 students will develop their understanding of God’s covenant with his people, how this affected the social and political life at the time including modern criticisms. Key individuals such as Abraham and Moses will be investigated with particular emphasis on the Torah.

3. The phenomenon of prophecy:
Through studying I Samuel 91–1016, I Kings 1817–1918 and I Kings 21 students will appreciate the features and importance of prophets and their role in advising the authorities of the day. A focus will be made of the development of prophecy in the 10th and 9th centuries, with particular reference to Samuel and Elijah

Unit 2 – New Testament (Unit G)

This unit explores key aspects within the New Testament including, the writing of the Synoptic Gospels, features of Jesus’ teaching and the passion and resurrection narratives

Students must answer two questions from a choice of three

1. How the Synoptic Gospels came into being:
Through a study of the three Synoptic Gospels students will gain knowledge and understanding of the importance of oral tradition and the priority given to Mark’s Gospel, the reasons why the Gospels were written, the editing processes contained within the text and their translation into Greek.

2. Aspects of Jesus’ teaching and action, parables and healings:
Through a study of key passages including the parables of The Sower (Matt 133-23 & Mk 43-20) and The Tenants in the Vineyard (Matt 2133-46 & Mk 121-12): the healings of the Centurion’s Slave (Matt 85-13 & Lk 71-10) and the Legion Mk 51-20 & Lk 826-39), students will develop their understanding of the purpose of parables and healings in the ministry of Jesus. Focus will also be made of certain scholars’ views regarding the theology of these key aspects of Jesus’ actions and teaching.

3. The arrest, trial and death of Jesus:
Through studying the similarities and differences between the three synoptic accounts of the passion and resurrection narratives, students will be able to demonstrate their knowledge and understanding of different scholars’ views of the theological message and key teaching about the person of Jesus offered by the evangelists.

AS Religious Studies Assessment

Unit 1 – Old Testament Unit F (RSS06)
Examination 1hr 15

Unit 2- New Testament Unit G (RSS07)
Examination 1hr 15


Our AS Level Religious Studies programmes are eligible for UCAS points, making them a great choice for students aiming to progress to University. UCAS points are awarded according to the grade earned, please see below for details.

A levels are also widely recognised by employers and are useful for students looking to progress their careers or meet requirements for promotion.

UCAS Points Table

A = 20
B = 16
C = 12
D = 10
E = 6