My EPQ is on the Nazi regime and despite me thinking the question was fairly narrow I have clearly researched too much and now my essay is around 8,500 words. My school is very strict but I really don't see how I can cut 3,000 words without completely ruining the whole flow of the essay! Does anyone know whether going this far over the word count will effect my grade drastically?
(The word count is supposed to be 5,000)
for a start, anything in footnotes doesn't count towards the final word count. Are you sure you've unticked the wordcount button where it adds the footnotes to the total. also if there is certain background information you've added to the essay to explain the topic a bit better, footnote that. my EPQ was on something very obscure (the wartime inventions of Barnes Wallis) so I ended up with about 1000 words in footnotes and several diagrams, which don't count either. if you can incorporate more footnotes it will look better researched and will cut down on length.
next get someone to blind-read it. this should be a friend or family member who hasn't read your draft before. this will give them fresh eyes to the whole thing. they'll point out any errors and things, and can also tell you if anything is superfluous. get a couple of people to do this, anything they agree is unnecessary probably is, and you can get rid of it.
finally I leave you with a very valuable quote from when I was doing my epq
"The most valuable of all talents is that of never using two words when one will do. "Thomas Jefferson
write briefly, clearly and simply.
If you've done those 8000 words well, it shouldn't affect your grade. My EPQ was 2000 words over and still got an A*.
Just make sure that you haven't repeated yourself unnecessarily and that you haven't wasted lots of words that don't add anything to your EPQ. (I cut down my EPQ by 1000 words that way.)
If it's a good essay, you should be fine! If your school disagrees, ask for some help from one of your teachers or family members about how to cut it down.
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