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Sunday, 23 November 2014

Syllabus Content

Cambridge O Level Islamiyat (2058) Syllabus for examination in 2015. 
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Syllabus content
Candidates should study the whole of the syllabus.

5.1 Paper 1

1. Major themes of the Qur’an

Three groups of passages are set for close study. These relate to the themes of:
God in himself
God’s relationship with the created world
God’s Messengers.

Candidates should explore:
• the major theme or themes of the Qur’an that appear in each passage, and
• the way each passage presents its theme(s) in its own particular way.

Candidates should study the passages in a recognised English translation, but with reference to the
original Arabic text. In the examination, passages will be set in both Arabic and English. Candidates shoulddemonstrate knowledge of the original as well as the translation.
Appendix 1 lists the passages for examination in 2015. These are reviewed each year and may change.

2. The history and importance of the Qur’an

Candidates should study:
• the revelation of the Qur’an to the Prophet between the years 610 and 632
• the account of the compilation of the Qur’an under the Rightly Guided Caliphs
• the major themes of the Qur’an as contained both in the passages set for special study and in other
similar passages
• the use of the Qur’an in legal thinking, and its relationship with the Hadiths, consensus (ijma‘ ) and
analogy (qiyas)
• its significance as the basis of all thought and action in Islam.

3. The life and importance of the Prophet Muhammad

Candidates should study:
• the main events of the Prophet’s life from his birth to his call to prophethood
• the main events of his activities in Makka and his experiences with his opponents
• the main events of his activities in Madina, his leadership of the community there and his conflicts withthe Makkans and others
• his actions and character
• the importance of his actions as examples for Muslim individuals in their personal conduct and relations with others including women and non-Muslims
• the importance of his actions as examples for Muslim communities in their relations with other states
• his significance as Seal of the Prophets and last Messenger of God.

Candidates should be able to give accounts of the main events of the Prophet’s life, and his significance in Muslim beliefs. They should also be able to explain the importance of his actions and experiences in the history and beliefs of Islam, particularly in the way they provide examples for present day Muslim individuals and communities.

In the examination, there will be either one or two questions on this topic.

4. The first Islamic community

Candidates should study:
• the Prophet’s wives
• his descendants, including his children, grandchildren and the direct line recognised among Shi‘a
Muslims as Imams
• his leading Companions, including the Ten Blessed Companions, his Scribes, the major characters who surrounded him in his ministry, the Emigrants and Helpers, and the four Rightly Guided Caliphs during his lifetime. (Note that the period of the Rightly Guided Caliphs’ rules after the time of the Prophet is included in the Syllabus under Paper 2.)

Candidates should know the names of the main characters who lived with and near the Prophet, and
the significant facts of their lives. They should also be able to explain the importance of their actions and experiences in the history and beliefs of Islam.In the examination, there will be either one or two questions on this topic


5.2 Paper 2


1. Major teachings in the Hadiths of the Prophet

Two groups of passages are set for close study. These relate to:
• individual conduct
• life in the community.

Candidates should study the teachings contained in each passage about what Muslims should believe and how they should act.

Candidates should study the passages with reference to the original Arabic text as well as the English
translation. In the examination, passages will be set in both Arabic and English.
Appendix 2 contains the passages for examination in 2015. These are reviewed each year and may
change.

2. The history and importance of the Hadiths

Candidates should study:
• the history of the compilation of the Hadiths
• the earliest collections
• the main musnad and musannaf collections
• the main compilers and their activities
• The methods based on examination of the chain of transmitters (isnad) and the text (matn) of a Hadith to test the reliability of the Hadith
• The main features of the six collections of Sunni Hadiths and the four collections of Shi‘a Hadiths
• The major themes of the Hadiths as these are contained both in the passages set for special study and in other similar passages
• their use in legal thinking, and their relationship with the Qur’an, consensus (ijma‘) and analogy (qiyas)
• their significance in thought and action in Islam.

3. The period of rule of the Rightly Guided Caliphs and their importance as leaders

Candidates should study:
• the main events of the rules of the four Caliphs
• their policies in maintaining and expanding the state
• their approaches to leading the community
• their main achievements
• the main difficulties they encountered
• their significance as examples of leadership
• the importance of their rules as models for government today
• their importance as examples for Muslim communities in their relations with other states.
 (Note that the lives and activities of the Caliphs during the Prophet’s lifetime are included in the Syllabus in Paper 1.)

Candidates should know the main events of the rules of the four Caliphs, and should explore the
significance of these events for the early and later history of Islam. They should also understand the
importance of their rules as examples for later times.

In the examination, there will be either one or two questions on this topic.

4. The Articles of Faith and the Pillars of Islam

Candidates should study:
• the Six Articles of Faith:
• God, including what Muslims believe about him
• angels, their nature and duties
• books, their contents and purpose
• prophets, their character and function
• God’s predestination and decree, its meaning and significance
• Resurrection and the last day, the main events and its significance.
• Jihad in its range of meanings, physical, mental and spiritual.
• the Five Pillars of Islam:
• the declaration of faith, shahada, including the significance of what it contains
• prayer, salat, including preparations, its performance and importance, congregational prayers on
Fridays and festivals, times of prayer, the place of prayer, private prayer, delayed prayer
• alms-giving, zakat, how it is performed and its significance in the community
• fasting, sawm, including the way it is observed, its significance and those exempted
• pilgrimage, hajj, including the main observances involved and their significance.

Candidates should know about each of these beliefs and observances, and should also understand theirsignificance in the faith and action of individual Muslims and of Muslim communities.

In the examination, there will be either one or two questions on this topic.
"Education is not preparation for life; education is life itself."
John Dewey