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Choosing an EPQ topic? Here's some ideas to help you choose!

So you've decided you should do an EPQ right? But what topic should you choose :eek:? Here's some steps to help you narrow it down.

1. Make a mindmap
This may seem obvious, but people miss this step all the time then get stuck! Start with 3-4 broad areas you are interested in (eg. cricket, history, programming and fashion) on the first layer, then think about specifics you are interested in in those areas. Try linking ideas back together if that's appropriate. If you decide an idea isn't what you want to do then write down (briefly) why, don't just rub it out or delete it.
(also you can use this as evidence of planning when you put your EPQ together at the end)

2. Decide if you want to do a dissertation or an artifact
If you started out with no idea what you wanted to do, you may not have decided this before hand. Or you may like one of your ideas so much you've changed your mind about what you want to do. But it's good to have an idea which one you would prefer before settling down to any further ideas.

3. Pick your favourite 3-4 ideas
Choose them from your mindmap. Then do a bit of source research...is it easy to find sources? Is it next to impossible? Do they all say the same thing/quote the same other source/are otherwise exceedingly similar? Are the sources relevant or are they just on the broad topic you've chosen?
These are all things to consider. If there's too many sources then perhaps consider narrowing your topic so that there's less to choose from, if there's not enough then try widening it a bit. If you can't find enough sources for your project then it's not going to be viable.

4. Consider other factors
Is your project going to be possible to complete in the time available? (more applicable for people producing a product, but worth considering nonetheless) Is it possible to reach a conclusion/judgement? Has it got enough depth to potentially write 5000 words on?

5. Pick your topic
Once you've considered all the questions above, you should be able to choose any of the remaining topics you have as they are viable (you may have had to go back and repeat steps if your original ideas were not viable). Pick your favourite and make a start analysing those sources you found! Remember, if you find (particularly early on) the topic isn't working for you, you can amend it to fit with the work you've done so far, or early enough on you can even restart as long as you evaluate why you did it! The joy of EPQ is it is all about evaluation and planning rather than the final project, so you can mess that up all you like as long as you evaluate it :tongue:

Good luck with making your choices!
love this!! usually ideas develop as you go and having your question change or alter slightly is completely normal!
Reply 2
Original post by troubletracking
love this!! usually ideas develop as you go and having your question change or alter slightly is completely normal!

If documented, this qualifies for AO4, I believe.
i'm interested in forensic science and after doing some research I quite like some form of title such as "what is the perfect murder?" but I wasn't sure if this sort of thing would be a good topic for an EPQ because I don't know much about them. I know i'd have to make the title more specific but before I do this I just wanted to ask.
Original post by EMBaguette
i'm interested in forensic science and after doing some research I quite like some form of title such as "what is the perfect murder?" but I wasn't sure if this sort of thing would be a good topic for an EPQ because I don't know much about them. I know i'd have to make the title more specific but before I do this I just wanted to ask.

HI, did you decide on anything more specific by anychance, are you allowed to do it?? my title is kinda similar
Original post by Lemur14
So you've decided you should do an EPQ right? But what topic should you choose :eek:? Here's some steps to help you narrow it down.

1. Make a mindmap
This may seem obvious, but people miss this step all the time then get stuck! Start with 3-4 broad areas you are interested in (eg. cricket, history, programming and fashion) on the first layer, then think about specifics you are interested in in those areas. Try linking ideas back together if that's appropriate. If you decide an idea isn't what you want to do then write down (briefly) why, don't just rub it out or delete it.
(also you can use this as evidence of planning when you put your EPQ together at the end)

2. Decide if you want to do a dissertation or an artifact
If you started out with no idea what you wanted to do, you may not have decided this before hand. Or you may like one of your ideas so much you've changed your mind about what you want to do. But it's good to have an idea which one you would prefer before settling down to any further ideas.

3. Pick your favourite 3-4 ideas
Choose them from your mindmap. Then do a bit of source research...is it easy to find sources? Is it next to impossible? Do they all say the same thing/quote the same other source/are otherwise exceedingly similar? Are the sources relevant or are they just on the broad topic you've chosen?
These are all things to consider. If there's too many sources then perhaps consider narrowing your topic so that there's less to choose from, if there's not enough then try widening it a bit. If you can't find enough sources for your project then it's not going to be viable.

4. Consider other factors
Is your project going to be possible to complete in the time available? (more applicable for people producing a product, but worth considering nonetheless) Is it possible to reach a conclusion/judgement? Has it got enough depth to potentially write 5000 words on?

5. Pick your topic
Once you've considered all the questions above, you should be able to choose any of the remaining topics you have as they are viable (you may have had to go back and repeat steps if your original ideas were not viable). Pick your favourite and make a start analysing those sources you found! Remember, if you find (particularly early on) the topic isn't working for you, you can amend it to fit with the work you've done so far, or early enough on you can even restart as long as you evaluate why you did it! The joy of EPQ is it is all about evaluation and planning rather than the final project, so you can mess that up all you like as long as you evaluate it :tongue:

Good luck with making your choices!


Nice! Used this to come up with my topic 'Is It Possible To Find Meaning In Life?' Never thought I'd be able to finish a 5000 word dissertation, but I did! I'm super proud of it, so message me if you'd be interested in reading 10 pages of confused rambling about philosophy!

PS. Absurdism is so cool. It combines the nihilistic 'Oh crap nothing means anything we're all gonna die' with a chill 'Eh who cares, might as well enjoy stuff.'
Reply 6
Original post by AshWasTaken
Nice! Used this to come up with my topic 'Is It Possible To Find Meaning In Life?' Never thought I'd be able to finish a 5000 word dissertation, but I did! I'm super proud of it, so message me if you'd be interested in reading 10 pages of confused rambling about philosophy!

PS. Absurdism is so cool. It combines the nihilistic 'Oh crap nothing means anything we're all gonna die' with a chill 'Eh who cares, might as well enjoy stuff.'

Can I please read your 10 pages of philosophy?
Original post by 15kaurm
Can I please read your 10 pages of philosophy?

Sure! https://medium.com/@arthur.mayfieldhowson/is-it-possible-to-find-meaning-in-life-740c2670bfe1
This is my first foray into philosophy so don't be too surprised if it isn't top notch. It was certainly fun writing it, thouugh, hope it'll be kinda fun to read.
This is a list of EPQ topics divided up according to the subject

Psychology
Violence
Prejudiced Brains
Children and different parenting practices
Blended families
Growth mindset
Informed choices
Street smart vs book smart

Math

Impact of made up numbers on society
Equations in general do they make sense
A look at the maths behind bitcoin mining
Evaluation of the golden ratio

http://thinkstudent.co.uk/epq-ideas/#EPQ_Ideas_Relating_To_Psychology
Original post by AshWasTaken
Nice! Used this to come up with my topic 'Is It Possible To Find Meaning In Life?' Never thought I'd be able to finish a 5000 word dissertation, but I did! I'm super proud of it, so message me if you'd be interested in reading 10 pages of confused rambling about philosophy!

PS. Absurdism is so cool. It combines the nihilistic 'Oh crap nothing means anything we're all gonna die' with a chill 'Eh who cares, might as well enjoy stuff.'

i would really love to read it as i think it would be very helpful and interesting, please let me know if you could send it :smile:
Original post by Lemur14
So you've decided you should do an EPQ right? But what topic should you choose :eek:? Here's some steps to help you narrow it down.

1. Make a mindmap
This may seem obvious, but people miss this step all the time then get stuck! Start with 3-4 broad areas you are interested in (eg. cricket, history, programming and fashion) on the first layer, then think about specifics you are interested in in those areas. Try linking ideas back together if that's appropriate. If you decide an idea isn't what you want to do then write down (briefly) why, don't just rub it out or delete it.
(also you can use this as evidence of planning when you put your EPQ together at the end)

2. Decide if you want to do a dissertation or an artifact
If you started out with no idea what you wanted to do, you may not have decided this before hand. Or you may like one of your ideas so much you've changed your mind about what you want to do. But it's good to have an idea which one you would prefer before settling down to any further ideas.

3. Pick your favourite 3-4 ideas
Choose them from your mindmap. Then do a bit of source research...is it easy to find sources? Is it next to impossible? Do they all say the same thing/quote the same other source/are otherwise exceedingly similar? Are the sources relevant or are they just on the broad topic you've chosen?
These are all things to consider. If there's too many sources then perhaps consider narrowing your topic so that there's less to choose from, if there's not enough then try widening it a bit. If you can't find enough sources for your project then it's not going to be viable.

4. Consider other factors
Is your project going to be possible to complete in the time available? (more applicable for people producing a product, but worth considering nonetheless) Is it possible to reach a conclusion/judgement? Has it got enough depth to potentially write 5000 words on?

5. Pick your topic
Once you've considered all the questions above, you should be able to choose any of the remaining topics you have as they are viable (you may have had to go back and repeat steps if your original ideas were not viable). Pick your favourite and make a start analysing those sources you found! Remember, if you find (particularly early on) the topic isn't working for you, you can amend it to fit with the work you've done so far, or early enough on you can even restart as long as you evaluate why you did it! The joy of EPQ is it is all about evaluation and planning rather than the final project, so you can mess that up all you like as long as you evaluate it :tongue:

Good luck with making your choices!


Thank you so much!

:shakehand:

This is really helpful.
Reply 11
I’m doing my epq on mathematics in gambling but I’m slightly concerned about whether there will be enough to say about it. Anyone got any suggestions for a title for this project or a specific route I could take with this?

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