What is it?
EPQ is an A Level standard standalone qualification designed to extend and develop students’ abilities beyond the A Level syllabus and prepare them for university or their future career.
- It is worth half an A Level (28 UCAS points)
- It is recognised by universities and employers
- Many universities make lower A Level offers to students undertaking an EPQ
How does it work?
The EPQ allows students to lead their own projects. Students will plan and carry out research on a topic that they’ve chosen and isn’t covered by their other qualifications. They can take inspiration from something touched on in class or something personal and unrelated to their studies. They then use this research to produce a written report and, in the case of practical projects, an artefact or a production. The project finishes with a presentation of the project including the conclusions found and an evaluation of their process.
By taking responsibility for the choice, design and decision making of an individual project, students:
- Become more critical, reflective and independent learners
- Develop and apply decision-making and problem-solving skills
- Increase their planning, research, analysis, synthesis, evaluation and presentation skills
- Learn to apply technologies confidently
- Demonstrate creativity, initiative and enterprise.
The EPQ at Wallingford Sixth Form
At Wallingford, students elect to take the EPQ in the summer term of Year 12. At this point, they formulate their idea(s) for the project topic and are guided in the formation of their project title, ready to start their research over the summer. With weekly supervision throughout Year 13, students write an extended essay, evaluate the process and create a presentation about their findings, which are usually presented in an evening to staff, friends and parents.
Recent topics include:
- To what extent is the eradication of cancer outside of the capabilities of modern medicine?
- To what extent can renewable energy meet the demands of global consumption?
- To what extent does social media have a negative impact on mental health?
- To what extent do psychological factors influence your performance in running?
- Can quality of life be improved for people living with Alzheimer’s disease?
- How fair is it to say that Ted Bundy was born a killer?
- Using statistics, was the March 2020 lockdown timed right?
- To what extent did the Ancient Greek’s influence the direction of modern mathematics?