Lemur14
Badges: 21
Rep:
?
#1
Report Thread starter 1 month ago
#1
Plenty of people each year want to know if they should take an EPQ, so here's TSR's guide to whether you should take it!

What is an EPQ?
An EPQ is an extended project qualification. It is a level 3 qualification, so you typically take it while doing A levels/Level 3 BTECs etc. It is an independent research project, which you can do on any topic as long as it is not something directly covered in qualifications you are completing (eg. you couldn't use your coursework for a subject and your EPQ)

What do I gain from doing an EPQ?
You will gain research skills such as finding, analysing and evaluating sources, you will have to remain organised throughout the project and it will give you time to research into a topic you are interested in. Some universities will give you a reduced offer in the event you complete an EPQ in a relevant area to a good standard.

Which universities reduce offers if you complete an EPQ?
Most expect you to obtain an A*/A in your EPQ to reduce your offer, but universities such as Bath, Southampton, Liverpool, Birmingham and Sheffield often look at your EPQ

How does EPQ work in schools?
This varies depending on the school. Some complete it in year 12, some year 13 and some over the summer between the two. You typically will not have as much contact time for EPQ as you do for one of your subjects, and you won't usually have specific homework (certainly after the first few weeks) so have to be self motivating and independently working on it outside of lessons.

Should I take 4 subjects or 3+EPQ?
This really depends on how much you like your subjects and whether taking a 4th subject will lower your grades in the other 3. You should always try and get 3 grades at the highest level you can since most people take 3 so often places will only look at your first 3. If you don't need whatever your fourth subject is for the future (for instance, don't drop maths if you want to take a physics degree or similar!) then an EPQ may help both in terms of reducing your workload overall and improving your independent research skills which you often need for university courses if you want to go down that route. You should talk to someone at your school who knows you if you are unsure however

So should I take an EPQ?
Do you have a subject you are interested in researching? Do you think you could handle an independent project on top of your existing subjects? If the answer to these is yes then why not give it a go? Most schools make it relatively easy to drop if you don't like it in the first few weeks so try it :yep:

Got other questions? Ask them in the thread below
3
reply
Hiro2468
Badges: 17
Rep:
?
#2
Report 1 month ago
#2
Thanks for this! The problem is that I can't think of a topic at all (>_< ) I've been told to do it based on what I'm planning to study at Uni but I don't know either! I'm not sure whether to do it about languages, accountancy or economics?
0
reply
Lemur14
Badges: 21
Rep:
?
#3
Report Thread starter 1 month ago
#3
(Original post by Hiro2468)
Thanks for this! The problem is that I can't think of a topic at all (>_< ) I've been told to do it based on what I'm planning to study at Uni but I don't know either! I'm not sure whether to do it about languages, accountancy or economics?
Do you take a language for A level? I believe you do a research project for that so if so then perhaps not a language?
Economics was certainly a popular option at my college but I'm struggling to think of an area of accountancy that could be researched in enough depth etc. (although admittedly I know very little about accountancy which might not help that).
For us we all had to start with a mindmap, choose a few subjects we liked and go from there into more detail of areas that interested us. Then once we had a few ideas we'd have been happy with we had to find some sources for it. If it was extremely easy to find out about then it was possibly too broad, whereas if we couldn't find much then it was either too narrow or not an area that was suitable for research, perhaps you could try something along those lines? Your supervisor should be able to help guide you too
0
reply
BlueEyedGirl_
Badges: 13
Rep:
?
#4
Report 1 month ago
#4
(Original post by Hiro2468)
Thanks for this! The problem is that I can't think of a topic at all (>_< ) I've been told to do it based on what I'm planning to study at Uni but I don't know either! I'm not sure whether to do it about languages, accountancy or economics?
Languages and economics could perhaps be combined in a slightly roundabout way - for example looking at the economy of the country? Obviously you’d need a much more specific topic and it isn’t directly related to the language itself, but more the culture side which is also focused on during A levels and at uni
1
reply
Hiro2468
Badges: 17
Rep:
?
#5
Report 1 month ago
#5
(Original post by Lemur14)
Do you take a language for A level? I believe you do a research project for that so if so then perhaps not a language?
Economics was certainly a popular option at my college but I'm struggling to think of an area of accountancy that could be researched in enough depth etc. (although admittedly I know very little about accountancy which might not help that).
For us we all had to start with a mindmap, choose a few subjects we liked and go from there into more detail of areas that interested us. Then once we had a few ideas we'd have been happy with we had to find some sources for it. If it was extremely easy to find out about then it was possibly too broad, whereas if we couldn't find much then it was either too narrow or not an area that was suitable for research, perhaps you could try something along those lines? Your supervisor should be able to help guide you too
Thanks! We're having our first lesson tomorrow so I'll talk to them about it and hopefully I can think of something. Tbh I don't know anything about accountancy nor law but I wanted to find a way to mix economics, accountancy and law in one.

I plan to think of 2 ideas since we're doing AQA and we apparently get more points from changing our EPQ idea.
0
reply
Hiro2468
Badges: 17
Rep:
?
#6
Report 1 month ago
#6
(Original post by BlueEyedGirl_)
Languages and economics could perhaps be combined in a slightly roundabout way - for example looking at the economy of the country? Obviously you’d need a much more specific topic and it isn’t directly related to the language itself, but more the culture side which is also focused on during A levels and at uni
Thanks! For languages I originally wanted to teach myself Spanish and then do an interview with my Spanish teacher but I just couldn't think of a topic for that.
0
reply
Lemur14
Badges: 21
Rep:
?
#7
Report Thread starter 1 month ago
#7
(Original post by Hiro2468)
Thanks! We're having our first lesson tomorrow so I'll talk to them about it and hopefully I can think of something. Tbh I don't know anything about accountancy nor law but I wanted to find a way to mix economics, accountancy and law in one.

I plan to think of 2 ideas since we're doing AQA and we apparently get more points from changing our EPQ idea.
I didn't do AQA, but I very much doubt you get more marks for switching, it'll be for amending your title to make it more specific/appropriate to the sources required or something rather than outright changing it :yep:
Good luck for tomorrow!
0
reply
yasminxsarah
Badges: 15
Rep:
?
#8
Report 1 month ago
#8
Hi guys,

Lovely thread here, I did the Extended Project (specifically a dissertation) myself too and got an A in it (1 mark off an A* ), not to mention, I really enjoyed the qualification, it is tough at times but the outcome is worth it.

If anyone wants any assistance or help etc. I'm more than happy to help.
A quick reply to this post or a pm will be more than fine.
2
reply
Qualms&Facepalms
Badges: 6
Rep:
?
#9
Report 1 month ago
#9
Can you take an EPQ with international baccalaureate?
0
reply
Lemur14
Badges: 21
Rep:
?
#10
Report Thread starter 1 month ago
#10
(Original post by Qualms&amp;Facepalms)
Can you take an EPQ with international baccalaureate?
I mean I suppose there's nothing to stop you if your school will enter you :dontknow: I think the extended essay you do is meant to be the equivalent, but not sure if there's as much research and planning done in that as I'm not very familiar with it
0
reply
Hiro2468
Badges: 17
Rep:
?
#11
Report 1 month ago
#11
(Original post by yasminxsarah)
Hi guys,

Lovely thread here, I did the Extended Project (specifically a dissertation) myself too and got an A in it (1 mark off an A* ), not to mention, I really enjoyed the qualification, it is tough at times but the outcome is worth it.

If anyone wants any assistance or help etc. I'm more than happy to help.
A quick reply to this post or a pm will be more than fine.
That's awesome! What topic did you write yours about please?

I still don't know who our EPQ advisor is and I thought we'd have a lesson on it but we didn't. I'm seriously stuck on a topic idea.

Any advice for getting an A?
0
reply
yasminxsarah
Badges: 15
Rep:
?
#12
Report 1 month ago
#12
(Original post by Hiro2468)
That's awesome! What topic did you write yours about please?

I still don't know who our EPQ advisor is and I thought we'd have a lesson on it but we didn't. I'm seriously stuck on a topic idea.

Any advice for getting an A?
Hello!

I wrote my EPQ on two -somewhat- similar topics (abortion and euthanasia), so I basically combined them. My project title ended up being "Abortion and Euthanasia: Whose right is it to decide whether we live or die?" It's not a common thing to do (two combined topics in one), but it's also not prohibited. I realised it definitely made things easier for me, writing-the-essay wise.

I found that even with our EPQ tutor, the project and lesson structure was confusing, so I referred to the previous A-A* grade EPQ project folders our tutor held, I'd definitely recommend that because it gives you a sense of direction; would be more than happy to lend you mine if you ever need it.

With the topic of your EPQ, you can essentially do it on anything (I had a classmate who did it on DofE), but it's best to relate it to your chosen uni degree/career aspirations. I'd say create a mindmap of topics you are interested in and go from there.

In regards to getting an A, make sure your plans and folder are clearly structured, as this will be a guide for showing you what it is that you need to do. A large bulk of your marks will come from your main piece (the dissertation) and your research. Your research is one of the most important parts so make sure you refer to it throughout your project, especially so in your main piece.

Let me know if you need anything else!
Last edited by yasminxsarah; 1 month ago
0
reply
Angela1001
Badges: 6
Rep:
?
#13
Report 1 month ago
#13
(Original post by Lemur14)
Plenty of people each year want to know if they should take an EPQ, so here's TSR's guide to whether you should take it!

What is an EPQ?
An EPQ is an extended project qualification. It is a level 3 qualification, so you typically take it while doing A levels/Level 3 BTECs etc. It is an independent research project, which you can do on any topic as long as it is not something directly covered in qualifications you are completing (eg. you couldn't use your coursework for a subject and your EPQ)

What do I gain from doing an EPQ?
You will gain research skills such as finding, analysing and evaluating sources, you will have to remain organised throughout the project and it will give you time to research into a topic you are interested in. Some universities will give you a reduced offer in the event you complete an EPQ in a relevant area to a good standard.

Which universities reduce offers if you complete an EPQ?
Most expect you to obtain an A*/A in your EPQ to reduce your offer, but universities such as Bath, Southampton, Liverpool, Birmingham and Sheffield often look at your EPQ

How does EPQ work in schools?
This varies depending on the school. Some complete it in year 12, some year 13 and some over the summer between the two. You typically will not have as much contact time for EPQ as you do for one of your subjects, and you won't usually have specific homework (certainly after the first few weeks) so have to be self motivating and independently working on it outside of lessons.

Should I take 4 subjects or 3+EPQ?
This really depends on how much you like your subjects and whether taking a 4th subject will lower your grades in the other 3. You should always try and get 3 grades at the highest level you can since most people take 3 so often places will only look at your first 3. If you don't need whatever your fourth subject is for the future (for instance, don't drop maths if you want to take a physics degree or similar!) then an EPQ may help both in terms of reducing your workload overall and improving your independent research skills which you often need for university courses if you want to go down that route. You should talk to someone at your school who knows you if you are unsure however

So should I take an EPQ?
Do you have a subject you are interested in researching? Do you think you could handle an independent project on top of your existing subjects? If the answer to these is yes then why not give it a go? Most schools make it relatively easy to drop if you don't like it in the first few weeks so try it :yep:

Got other questions? Ask them in the thread below
I have a friend who got an ubconditional offer to study Archaeology on her EPQ on "Cattle in Roman England" based on a study of bones in museums!
0
reply
04MR17
Badges: 22
Rep:
?
#14
Report 1 month ago
#14
(Original post by Angela1001)
I have a friend who got an ubconditional offer to study Archaeology on her EPQ on "Cattle in Roman England" based on a study of bones in museums!
What institution was this from?
And was it uncondition if firm?
0
reply
Angela1001
Badges: 6
Rep:
?
#15
Report 1 month ago
#15
(Original post by 04MR17)
What institution was this from?
And was it uncondition if firm?
York and yes, firm!
0
reply
04MR17
Badges: 22
Rep:
?
#16
Report 1 month ago
#16
(Original post by Angela1001)
York and yes, firm!
And had the EPQ been completed at the time of offer? Or was grade pending.

Lots of universities have given out unconditional if firm offers (as opposed to true unconditionals) to candidates as part of a marketing tactic to attract students there. I haven't looked into whether York is particularly bad for this and I don't wish to discredit your friend, but it is rather unlikely that universities in general will dish out unconditionals (if firm or otherwise) to students based on the EPQ. I'm not saying you're wrong, just that your friend is probably a bit exceptional.
0
reply
999tigger
Badges: 19
#17
Report 1 month ago
#17
Imo only do an EPQ if there is a definite advantage to doing one. That requires research. It is not always the best option or use of your time.
0
reply
04MR17
Badges: 22
Rep:
?
#18
Report 1 month ago
#18
(Original post by Hiro2468)
That's awesome! What topic did you write yours about please?

I still don't know who our EPQ advisor is and I thought we'd have a lesson on it but we didn't. I'm seriously stuck on a topic idea.

Any advice for getting an A?
Time management more than anything. Don't put it off, keep on top of it regularly is far better than sitting on it for a week and getting frustrated with yourself when you hit a wall.
0
reply
Angela1001
Badges: 6
Rep:
?
#19
Report 1 month ago
#19
(Original post by 04MR17)
And had the EPQ been completed at the time of offer? Or was grade pending.

Lots of universities have given out unconditional if firm offers (as opposed to true unconditionals) to candidates as part of a marketing tactic to attract students there. I haven't looked into whether York is particularly bad for this and I don't wish to discredit your friend, but it is rather unlikely that universities in general will dish out unconditionals (if firm or otherwise) to students based on the EPQ. I'm not saying you're wrong, just that your friend is probably a bit exceptional.
Her EPQ was 15,000 words with much research, measurements etc! She had her EPQ result before she got her offer!
0
reply
04MR17
Badges: 22
Rep:
?
#20
Report 1 month ago
#20
(Original post by Angela1001)
Her EPQ was 15,000 words with much research, measurements etc! She had her EPQ result before she got her offer!
That would explain it yes. If someone was applying who was doing their EPQ that year they'd be unlikely to get the same treatment. I just wanted to make that clear for anyone reading the thread. :yy:

Congratulations to your friend though, sounds like a fantastic piece of work. :woo:
1
reply
X

Quick Reply

Attached files
Write a reply...
Reply
new posts
Back
to top
Latest
My Feed

See more of what you like on
The Student Room

You can personalise what you see on TSR. Tell us a little about yourself to get started.

Personalise

University open days

  • University of West London
    Postgraduate Open Day - Ealing Site Postgraduate
    Thu, 21 Nov '19
  • University of East Anglia
    Mini Open Day Undergraduate
    Fri, 22 Nov '19
  • University of Hull
    Undergraduate Open Day Undergraduate
    Sat, 23 Nov '19

Have you made up your mind on your five uni choices? (November update)

Yes I know where I'm applying (192)
71.38%
No I haven't decided yet (47)
17.47%
Yes but I might change my mind (30)
11.15%

Watched Threads

View All