Religion and Society Network

Unit Resources

The VCE Study Design – Religion and Society


In this study, religions are defined as those forms of belief and practice through which human beings express their sense of ultimate reality. Such beliefs and practices form an important part of human experience and this experience is both individual and collective. Religious communities are formed and traditions of belief and practice are developed.

This study proposes that religions can be understood in a general way as meaning systems that have interrelated aspects. These guide students through their study of one or many religious traditions. The nine aspects are:

  • Beliefs
  • Sacred stories
  • Spaces, places, times and artifacts
  • Texts
  • Rituals
  • Symbols
  • Social structures
  • Ethics
  • Spiritual experiences

The nine aspects presented above provide a useful framework for discussion, but each tradition has its own characteristic emphases.