Religious, Moral and Philosophical Studies

Why do we study RMPS?

RMPS is the study of Religious, Moral and Philosophical studies (RMPS) is the study of the nature of knowledge, morality and religion (so it’s a pretty big subject!). As long as there have been people to ask questions, there has been philosophy, morality and religion.

RMPS allows you to develop your thinking ability in order to engage, in a more meaningful way, with the world around them. The world is an ever increasingly complicated place; we face a variety of challenges every single day  and we should be equipped to deal with these issues. We are a very thought based subject and our aim is to develop independent thinking skills in a relevant, interesting and challenging way. Pupils are also encouraged to consider their own personal beliefs and values, the reasoning behind them and why these beliefs matter.

Skills Developed in RMPS


Who gets RMPS?

During S1, S2 and S3 pupils are taught one period of Religious, Moral and Philosophical Studies a week by Miss Stewart. Pupils are taught a huge variety of different topics across their three years.

In S5/6 pupils are given the option to take Higher Philosophy.



Our S1 course begins with a journey into philosophy, as with all things in life, and we start with the Big Questions in life. This unit examines huge questions such as, can a machine think? Does God Exist? Where do right and wrong come from? This unit helps to develop the skills required to think like a philosopher.

From here pupils then go on to look at World Religions. Looking at a variety of ancient and modern religions, from Islam to Jediism, learners learn to evaluate different religious beliefs and reflect on how they influence the actions of their followers.

Following this the final unit of work brings the pupils to Animal Ethics. This is the moral studies topics for S1. Through this unit we hope to ensure that through understanding different perspectives pupils will learn to become more empathetic, open and peace-seeking in an ever more complex and interconnected world. This unit will help pupils to further develop their ability to articulate their own views confidently.

Information Leaflet for Parents


As part of progression in the RMPS and Philosophy department, our S2 course moves on to look at a variety of morality units. Units include Medical ethics, where we examine three main topics, abortion, and euthanasia and organ donation. We analyse different opinions and responses to these ethical topics and pupils are encouraged to engage in debate and discussion about their own opinions. We also focus on Gangs and the Good Samaritan. Pupils analyse different lifestyle choices and the experiences of gang members. For example the use of facial tattoos, initiation ceremonies and how members are viewed by society.

Finally, to round up S2, our last unit of morality is Capital Punishment. In recent years there have been numerous, morally evil acts that have happened e.g. Boston marathon bomb, the Colorado movie shooting etc. In a society where the death penalty was gradually fading into the background it has jumped once more to the forefront of our news.

Information Leaflet for Parents


RMPS changes significantly in S3. In S3 pupils complete their Religious, Belief and Values (RBV) Award. An SQA qualification to gain some SCQF points. The levels in question are chosen by pupils during class time and it is up to them to continue their workload at the appropriate level to achieve these awards.

Information Leaflet for Parents



Senior Phase (S5/6)


Higher Philosophy

Philosophy is the study of problems involving maters such as knowledge, existence, reason, values, language and the mind. The methods of philosophy include questioning things such as rational argument, critical discussion, and systematic presentation. Philosophy questions the way the world and everything in it in such a way that can completely change your perspective on the universe and our entire lives.

Read the attachments for even more information about Higher Philosophy and Revision guidelines.