Ky_in_the_sky
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I’m very excited that I managed to get an A* for my EPQ this year! I wanted to use this opportunity to help others currently doing/ starting their EPQ by answering any questions and giving advice and guidance

Extra context for my situation (can especially help with):
- Part-time school and EPQ
- Autism and similar learning difficulties
- Mental health/ depression and EPQ (meeting deadlines and motivation)
- Doing an ‘express’ EPQ (in six months!)

Even if I’m not too sure on your topic, I’ll try to help out where I can, my teacher was absolutely wonderful and I hope to pass on some of her guidance!
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Mesopotamian.
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I’m not doing an EPQ but congratulations on your achievement
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Ky_in_the_sky
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(Original post by Mesopotamian.)
I’m not doing an EPQ but congratulations on your achievement
Thank you very much!!
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Kareena0110
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Congrats on getting an A* on your EPQ. I am currently working on my own which focuses on how mental health can be impacted my religion, culture, ethnicity and other factors. I decided to do this topic because I have my own mental health struggles. I would like to know how you structured and presented your EPQ and what you think was effective in achieving the A*. Again congratulations and any advice would be appreciated.
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Ky_in_the_sky
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(Original post by Kareena0110)
Congrats on getting an A* on your EPQ. I am currently working on my own which focuses on how mental health can be impacted my religion, culture, ethnicity and other factors. I decided to do this topic because I have my own mental health struggles. I would like to know how you structured and presented your EPQ and what you think was effective in achieving the A*. Again congratulations and any advice would be appreciated.
Thank you!

I personally found it useful to structure my EPQ essay into a number of “sub-questions” and subheadings, and I tried to answer each one as I went along, making a checklist of related points and crossing them off when I could see them mentioned!

The best thing you can do in your EPQ essay is to also provide a secure counter argument, and I found it best to keep the bulk of my two sides in their own sections so they can read clearly. I’d highly recommend using your strongest point (for or against) first to build a secure baseline so the reader gets a good understanding of the extent of your knowledge on the topic first and foremost. I also found this made it easier for me to establish my counterpoints later on as I could refer back and use a similar structure to address the differences in opinions. You don’t have to agree with the counter argument, and it doesn’t actually even have to be a secure argument as long as it does exist - you can actually call upon its dubious nature as a criticism in your evaluation which gives you more marks!

For my presentation, I used the subheadings and areas from my essay as a structure. Your presentation wants to tell a story of your journey through your time doing the EPQ: what inspired you to do this topic, the challenges you’ve faced and overcome, things you feel you did well and things you feel like you could have improved upon. I was advised to not read straight off of the presentation PowerPoint as this can potentially lower your marks, so I used bullet points and elaborated upon them, some used flash-cards as prompts too!

You also want to aim to answer any questions the audience may have within your presentation, especially if your topic includes ideas and theologies that outside readers who don’t know about religious policies and scriptures! I’d recommend getting friends or family who don’t have specific knowledge about the topic to look over it, or doing a trial run with them so they can prepare you for areas you need to explain more. This shows your understanding of the subject and gives the person marking it a good indication that you’ve thoroughly looked into this area and that you have secure subject knowledge. You may find that your teachers ask questions at the end and this may seem daunting - however this is only if they feel like you could have elaborated on something more, or if you missed something out!

You don’t need to go overboard on your presentation as they should only last about 10 minutes, so get your most important points across first and foremost!

In what I found effective in getting the A* would mostly be communication and variety of points. I personally made a separate word document where I’d note down any potential points to use and identified my strongest ones to use - which meant that if one of my points didn’t work out, I could easily find another one to use in its place. On the side of communication, don’t be afraid of asking your supervisor questions if you’re even only slightly unsure! This avoids any potential mistakes you may make without even knowing it. I also found looking at mark schemes to be useful as it gives a slight indication of the ideal details the exam board are looking for - e.g. AQA look for a minimum essay word count of 5,000 words! I found this (paired with supervisor communication) to be extremely useful.

My best advice though is to put your time into it. A lot of my friends saw the EPQ as being something easy that they could put minimum effort into and get good grades in return, however that just isn’t the case. As long as you choose a topic you’re genuinely interested in and enjoy, getting a good grade shouldn’t be too unrealistic

I hope this helps in some way and thank you again!!
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Kareena0110
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(Original post by Ky_in_the_sky)
Thank you!

I personally found it useful to structure my EPQ essay into a number of “sub-questions” and subheadings, and I tried to answer each one as I went along, making a checklist of related points and crossing them off when I could see them mentioned!

The best thing you can do in your EPQ essay is to also provide a secure counter argument, and I found it best to keep the bulk of my two sides in their own sections so they can read clearly. I’d highly recommend using your strongest point (for or against) first to build a secure baseline so the reader gets a good understanding of the extent of your knowledge on the topic first and foremost. I also found this made it easier for me to establish my counterpoints later on as I could refer back and use a similar structure to address the differences in opinions. You don’t have to agree with the counter argument, and it doesn’t actually even have to be a secure argument as long as it does exist - you can actually call upon its dubious nature as a criticism in your evaluation which gives you more marks!

For my presentation, I used the subheadings and areas from my essay as a structure. Your presentation wants to tell a story of your journey through your time doing the EPQ: what inspired you to do this topic, the challenges you’ve faced and overcome, things you feel you did well and things you feel like you could have improved upon. I was advised to not read straight off of the presentation PowerPoint as this can potentially lower your marks, so I used bullet points and elaborated upon them, some used flash-cards as prompts too!

You also want to aim to answer any questions the audience may have within your presentation, especially if your topic includes ideas and theologies that outside readers who don’t know about religious policies and scriptures! I’d recommend getting friends or family who don’t have specific knowledge about the topic to look over it, or doing a trial run with them so they can prepare you for areas you need to explain more. This shows your understanding of the subject and gives the person marking it a good indication that you’ve thoroughly looked into this area and that you have secure subject knowledge. You may find that your teachers ask questions at the end and this may seem daunting - however this is only if they feel like you could have elaborated on something more, or if you missed something out!

You don’t need to go overboard on your presentation as they should only last about 10 minutes, so get your most important points across first and foremost!

In what I found effective in getting the A* would mostly be communication and variety of points. I personally made a separate word document where I’d note down any potential points to use and identified my strongest ones to use - which meant that if one of my points didn’t work out, I could easily find another one to use in its place. On the side of communication, don’t be afraid of asking your supervisor questions if you’re even only slightly unsure! This avoids any potential mistakes you may make without even knowing it. I also found looking at mark schemes to be useful as it gives a slight indication of the ideal details the exam board are looking for - e.g. AQA look for a minimum essay word count of 5,000 words! I found this (paired with supervisor communication) to be extremely useful.

My best advice though is to put your time into it. A lot of my friends saw the EPQ as being something easy that they could put minimum effort into and get good grades in return, however that just isn’t the case. As long as you choose a topic you’re genuinely interested in and enjoy, getting a good grade shouldn’t be too unrealistic

I hope this helps in some way and thank you again!!
I appreciate the help. Thank you very much!!
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delaneyraejames
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Hey there,First of all, congratulations on your achievement! That’s amazing Im currently in year 12 at sixth form, they want us to do an EPQ, but I have no clue where to start... Im unsure on what I’d like to do as a career later in life so it’s difficult knowing what topic to base my EPQ on. I was thinking around psychology, particularly child development... I’d appreciate any tips you have at all, as I have a meeting with my appointed EPQ mentor coming up in the next 2 weeks or so, and don’t want to sound like I haven’t got a clue what I’m talking about 😂Thanks in advance!! Hope you’re well
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