Where did the universe come from?


Key Questions

  1. What do we believe about the world? Why?
  2. Did God create everything, including us?
  3. Are there different ways of seeing truth?
  4. Are science and religion in conflict?


About the unit

This unit investigates the ways in which science and religion are often perceived to be in conflict. It asks whether they can aid each other, and so facilitate learning about and from religion. The unit encourages pupils to examine and reflect upon information on meaning and purpose in life in the light of their study of elements of religious traditions, and so facilitates learning from religion and science about concepts of truth.

This unit is expected to take approximately 7 hours.

Where the unit fits in

This unit builds on unit 7A ‘Where do we look for God?’.

This unit would help to prepare pupils for later GCSE work in RE/RS by developing their ability for independent critical thinking, and consideration of the concepts of truth and meaning.


At the end of this unit

most pupils will: know that a person’s world-view shapes and is shaped by their scientific and religious beliefs; describe important features of a creation story, and compare and contrast it with scientific accounts of why human life exists; explain how personal beliefs affect and are affected by people’s understanding of truth; select and combine information from written sources evaluating other people’s views and opinions in order to answer questions on whether science and religion are in conflict; make informed responses to questions about existence, truth and purpose of human life; evaluate other people’s values and commitments in the light of their learning, reflecting on their own understanding of the uniqueness of human life

some pupils will not have made so much progress and will: know that a person’s world-view affects the beliefs they hold about religion; describe key beliefs and teachings about creation and evolution; make comparisons between religion and science; select relevant information from written sources to produce coherent answers to questions on the purpose of human life; ask questions from their own and others’ experiences about religious concepts such as myth; reflect on their own understanding of the uniqueness of human life

some pupils will have progressed further and will: know that a person’s beliefs affect their perceptions of the world and everything they do; analyse and account for the different stories and scientific accounts of creation, and concepts of truth; compare and contrast viewpoints within science and religion that are perceived to be contradictory, giving reasons for the differences of opinion; explain clearly religious perspectives on questions of meaning, truth and purpose, relating these to their own and others’ views; evaluate answers to questions of meaning and purpose with appropriate evidence and examples, as well as their own independent critical thought, reflecting on their own understanding of the uniqueness of human life

Prior learning

It is helpful if pupils have:

Language for learning

Through the activities in this unit pupils will be able to understand, use and spell correctly words relating to the study of:

Speaking and listening – through the activities pupils could:

Writing – through the activities pupils could:


As well as a range of textbooks and published resources, this unit will be enhanced by the use of original material from contemporary believers including:

Out of school learning

Pupils could:

Future learning

Pupils could go on to: