Religious & Moral Education

Religious Moral and Philosophical Studies (RMPS) at Forres Academy is committed to enabling each pupil to achieve the four capacities promoted in the Curriculum for Excellence.  In particular, our department helps support confident individuals who have self-respect, a sense of mental and emotional well-being and are developing secure values and beliefs.  Religious, Moral and Philosophical Studies encourages pupils to become self-aware; giving them a location to develop and communicate their opinions, beliefs and values as well as respecting those of others.  Our aim is to equip pupils with the thinking skills required to investigate, process, and communicate a wide variety of views.  This is in the context of the universal search for meaning and purpose in life.

RMPS at Forres Academy promotes respect for people of all backgrounds and beliefs, and attempts to develop empathy in pupils. Openness to new thinking and ideas helps pupils become successful learners and responsible citizens able to make reasoned evaluations while understanding opinions which may differ from their own.

Courses & Qualifications

S1: The S1 RMPS course is designed for pupils to develop important thinking skills through a variety of activities in the study of Philosophy. The pupils will be introduced to ultimate questions such as: Is there life after death?  Does God exist? What is the meaning of life?

The course includes the following Units:

– Introduction to Philosophy

– Ultimate Questions

– Descartes

– Nature of Reality

– Life, Death and Beyond

In S2, the pupils start the year with YPI: Youth and Philanthropy Initiative Scotland: This is an international programme that aims to develop community leaders. The pupils are given hands-on experience of philanthropy that provides them with the skills to make a positive difference in their community. The pupils work in groups investigating a local social issue. They work with their designated charity and put forward a presentation as to why this charity should receive £3000.

They will develop 21st century skills such as teamwork, problem solving, creative thinking, communication and presentation skills.

This project is delivered in Partnership with the English department (for further information please see the English subject page.

S2 students will then move on to focus on shaping their own responses to questions about the origin of the universe and one world religion through the following Units:

  • Belief and Science – Origins of the Universe
  • World Religion

In S3 (core), the students will develop moral decision making skills and investigate moral issues through the study of Moral Philosophy.  They will continue to develop their knowledge and understanding of a world religion and gender issues whilst consolidating the skills they have developed in S1 and S2.  This will be delivered through the following units:

  • Moral Philosophy
  • Organ Donation
  • World religion: Islam (subject to change 2019/20)
  • Gender issues

S3 Meaning of Life:  This course examines what it means to be human and aims to take a different approach to understanding the human being’s desire to be religious.  Pupils are introduced to the course by studying basic approaches in Psychology so they have some appreciation of the causes of human behaviour, beliefs and philosophy.  Units covered include:

  • Introductions to Psychology and Human Behaviour
  • Beliefs
  • Life after Death
  • Philosophy
  • Morality and Belief unit

S.4 (core) students will explore challenges to their own beliefs and values while they also consolidate skills they have developed in S1, S2 and S3. Units covered include:

– Philosophy – Arguments in Action

– Morality and Belief

– World religion

The core S4 students will work towards National 4/5/6 unit assessments as standalone units as well as Added Value Units.

National 4/5

From S4 and beyond, pupils can take the National 4 or 5 qualification which includes 3 units plus an assignment (Added Value Unit). The 3 units are:

  • World Religion: Buddhism
  • Morality and Belief – Morality, Medicine and the Human Body
  • Religious and Philosophical Question – Existence of God

N4 Added Value Unit – pupils pose their own moral question and answer it in an assignment where they look at different views and finally come to their own conclusion.

N5 Added Value Unit – pupils pose their own moral question and prepare to answer it within an hour under exam conditions. Their answer will cover the topic in more depth than the N4.

Link to National 4/5 RMPS :


Forres Academy enjoys many pupils electing to continue with the subject in S5/6 and results at this level are consistently excellent.

The Higher course includes 3 units:

  • World Religion: Buddhism (subject to change 2019/20)
  • Morality and Belief: Morality and Justice
  • Religious and Philosophical Question: Origins

Link to SQA Higher RMPS:

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