This year’s theme is “Our Changing World: Census 2021 and Religion”.

We invite video submissions to bring the Census 2021 numbers to life by telling us a story about how religion is changing in the area around your school.

The competition is open to students enrolled on GCSE and A-level courses in the 2023 to 24 academic year.

The David Garlick Prize is named in memory of a former student, David Garlick, who made a generous bequest to the department, and is intended to promote our joint disciplines of Theology and Religious Studies.

Your video

Each video must include some data from the Census, and should aim to explain or explore that data.

For example, you could:

  • use the Census data to explore some of the diversity in your area
  • share the history of your local religious communities to explain that diversity
  • use the Census data to test some classic Religious Studies ideas
  • use Religious Studies ideas to explain the trends revealed by the Census
  • compare your region to other parts of the country and explain the differences
  • propose your own theory to explain why religious identity is changing
  • introduce a local faith community that is growing and ask why
  • show the limitations of the Census by exploring the diversity within religions and worldviews
  • challenge the Census data and disagree with the question (was it biased?) 
  • use the Census data to show why Religious Studies matters.

Be creative! These are just a few suggestions, and you might think of lots of other ideas.

Videos should briefly and accurately outline the census data used and explain what it shows. Be creative in using the data as a stepping stone to a story or explanation about religion. Be sure your narrative or explanation is simple, engaging, and coherent, and shows evidence of critical thinking.

Before recording your video

Talk to your teacher. Your school will have rules about photography and video permissions and research ethics, so it is essential to follow these. You might be able to interview other pupils, members of the public and local faith communities as part of your video, but this is completely optional. If you prefer not to show your face on the video at all, you can record a voiceover instead. Ask your teacher to explain what you can do and what rules you need to follow.

Be data privacy aware

If you do film people in way that they can be recognised, and your video is published by us, then we will need to send them a privacy notice. This tells them of their right to request their identifying content be removed at any point in the future. Please keep a record of the contact details of anyone who appears in your video in case we need to do this.

Technical specification

  • Maximum length: 4 minutes
  • Format: MP4 or MOV

Submitting your video

Use the WeTransfer file transfer service using the following details:

  • Email to:
  • Title: David Garlick prize 2024
  • Also include your name, school, year group and the name and email address of your teacher in the message box. Please see our privacy notice for information on how your data is processed and stored.

Submission deadline

  • Monday 1 July 2024


The Census

The question "What is your religion?" has now been asked on the England and Wales Census three times (in 2001, 2011 and 2021). The results show a drop in the number of people identifying as Christian, from 72% of the population in 2001 to 59% in 2011 to 46% in 2021. The number of people who identified as having no religion has gone up from 15% to 25% to 37%. Lots of other religious groups grew in size, including people identifying as Muslim (3% to 5% to 7%), Hindi, Sikh, Jewish and pagan.

All of these Census reports show the same trend: the UK is more diverse in religion and belief than ever before. Learning to make sense of religious and non-religious worldviews has never been so important!

Census data

You can use data relevant to your own region. Each Census asks a different set of questions.

England and Wales

The Office of National Statistics allows us to explore this data in lots of ways. One of the most interesting is the Census Map, which allows us to see which religious and nonreligious identities are most popular in different parts of England and Wales, from your region or county right down to the street you live on.


Northern Ireland


One prize of £100 will be awarded to the winning entry by a GCSE student, and one prize of £100 will be awarded to the winning entry by an A-Level student.

Group submissions are welcome, but in case of a group winner the prize would be divided equally among the members of the group.

The winning entries will be chosen by teachers in the Department of Theology and Religious Studies, with help from undergraduate students in the School of Cultural, Media and Visual Studies.

Winning entries will be published on the University of Nottingham website with permission.

 Theologies and religious studies

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