For sixth formers with a real interest and passion for their work, we offer them the chance to take the Extended Project Qualification (or EPQ)
What is it?
This is an opportunity to research a topic, posed as a question, that interests you and is related to but not specifically on the syllabus of one of your AS subjects. You will learn the skills needed to produce a 5000 word research paper with supporting materials in your enrichment lessons through a series of taught sessions and will then be supported by a teacher who essentially supervises you through the process of producing that paper and a presentation about your EPQ. These skills are essentially a foundation for university style learning and universities are now acknowledging the value of the EPQ, offering successful EPQ students places on the strength of their performance. The skill set should also enhance your performance in your A Level studies.
The qualification is equal to an AS qualification that you can record on your UCAS form when applying to university. It often serves as a good topic of conversation at university interviews and demonstrates a high level of interest in that subject area that supports an application to study that subject effectively.
Is the EPQ right for me?
- your GCSE grades are good (this means mostly grades A* and A)
- your other commitments outside of school (including paid work) are reasonable
- You are well-organised, independent and motivated to excel.
- You enjoy the opportunity to work independently and are responsible enough to take control of your own project.
Structure of the course
Term 1: Initial planning, research, skill building through taught sessions, refinement of title, a log book.
Term 2: Drafting and refining the written project, compiling supporting material, e.g. a bibliography, an evaluation of resources, planning a short presentation to be given at a formal ‘Presentation Evening’ in which you speak about your research methods and answer questions about the content and process of your research.
Term 3: refining and submitting the EPQ for marking [note – this should be completed before other AS exams need to be prioritised]
It is expected that the majority of the work will be done in the allocated periods with some further research carried out beyond the classroom.