Dominican College
Griffith Avenue, Dublin 9

JC - Religious Education

Religion Learning Journey

Religious Education aims to develop knowledge, understanding, skills, attitudes, and values to enable young people to come to an understanding of religion and its relevance to life, relationships, society, and the wider world.

It aims to:

  • develop the students’ ability to examine questions of meaning, purpose, and relationships
  • help students understand, respect and appreciate people’s expression of beliefs
  • facilitate dialogue and reflection on the diversity of beliefs and values that inform responsible decision-making and ways of living.

Structure of the Specification


Expressing beliefs: develops students’ ability to understand, respect and appreciate how people’s beliefs have been expressed in the past and continue to be expressed today through lifestyle, culture, rites and rituals, community building, social action and ways of life. It enables students to appreciate that people live out of their different beliefs— religious or otherwise. It also focuses on understanding and appreciating that diversity exists within religions.

Exploring questions: enables students to explore some of the questions of meaning, purpose, and relationships that people wonder about and to discover how people with different religious beliefs and other interpretations of life respond to these questions. It focuses on students developing a set of knowledge, understanding, skills, attitudes, and values that allows them to question, probe, interpret, analyse and reflect on these big questions, in dialogue with each other.

Living our values: focuses on enabling students to understand and reflect on the norms and values that underlie actions and to recognise how moral decisionmaking works in their own lives and in the lives of others, based on particular values and/or beliefs. It also enables students to engage in an informed discussion about moral issues and respectfully communicate and explain opinions and beliefs.

The Elements

Enquiry: This element focuses on stimulating students’ curiosity and prompting their engagement in a topic or question. Through a process of enquiry, students engage with a range of stimulus materials to uncover ideas, facts, information, images, and perspectives related to a topic or question.

Exploration: This element focuses on examining a topic or question in detail, questioning, probing, discussing, listening, imagining, interpreting and drawing conclusions, for the purpose of discovery. It also focuses on encouraging dialogue and appreciation of the diversity of interpretations and responses that may exist.

Reflection and action: This element focuses on students reflecting on what they have learned and on their own experience of, and/or response to, the topic. It encourages students to examine what they have learned to gain deeper insight and understanding. It also enables students to consider how the learning relates to their lives and/or to the lives of others, thus prompting active and responsible citizenship.

Assessment and the learning journey

CBA 1: A person of commitment

Format: Individual or group report that may be presented in a wide range of formats

Student preparation: During a period of 3 weeks, with support/guidance by the teacher, students will research and report on a person whose religious beliefs or worldview have had a positive impact on the world, past or present.

Completion of assessment: Term two in 2nd year

CBA 2: The Human Search For Meaning

Structured inquiry into a geographical aspect(s) in a local area.

Format: Report that may be presented in a variety of formats

Student preparation: Students will, over a period of 3 weeks, with support/guidance by the teacher, explore artistic or architectural or archaeological evidence that shows ways that people have engaged in religious belief/the human search for meaning and purpose of life

Completion of assessment: Term one in 3rd year

After completion of each CBA, a Subject Learning and Assessment Review (SLAR) meeting takes place providing teachers with the opportunity to share samples of their assessment of student work and build a common understanding about the quality of student learning.

Assessment Task

On completion of the second Classroom-Based Assessment, students will undertake an Assessment Task. It will be marked by the State Examinations Commission and will be allocated 10% of the marks used to determine the final examination grade awarded by the SEC.

Final Examination

There will be one examination paper at a common level, set and marked by the State Examinations Commission (SEC). The examination will be no longer than two hours in duration and will take place in June of third year. In any year, the learning outcomes to be assessed will constitute a sample of the relevant outcomes from the tables of learning outcomes.

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