Students rise to the EPQ challenge

Upper Sixth students impressed staff with an impressive range of topics as they presented their Extended Project Qualification (EPQ) projects last week. 

The EPQ is an independent project undertaken by students that gives them an opportunity to delve deeper into an area of study of their choice. Students can choose to write a dissertation, carry out an investigation, create an artefact or give a performance. 

Months of research and hard work culminated in the EPQ presentation evening, and staff were particularly impressed this year at the confidence with which students presented their projects. 

Mrs Hollingworth, Deputy Head of Sixth Form, said: “I never fail to be amazed by the level of research and hard work that our students put into their EPQ projects.

“This year’s cohort has presented confidently on a range of topics, from issues of law and medicine, to Gothic literature, design of the future, and fine art investigations.”

A few examples of the excellent work produced by this year group include:

Isabelle Thane (U6WER): Should the minimum age of criminal responsibility be raised in England and Wales? Isabelle, who hopes to become a human rights lawyer, interviewed judges and barristers to help with her research. 

Partap Shergill (U6LES): Should the NHS implement a screening programme for Prostate Cancer? Partap has applied to study Medicine at university and chose his EPQ project to better understand how medical policy is formed in the UK.

Josh Peevor (U6WAL): Is the legalisation of drugs a positive economic decision for the UK? Josh’s project expertly encompassed all the aims of the EPQ; to research beyond the A Level specification and combine subject areas holistically. In this instance, Josh combined elements of Economics, Ethics, Biology and Law to great effect.

Arabella Davidson (U6DUT): Arabella presented her EPQ as an artefact, which is one of the four options available to candidates. Having investigated artists who were inspired by their dreams, she created paintings in response to her research and displayed and spoke about these on the presentation evening.

Leilani Jenkins (U6LES): How does the nineteenth century Gothic novel “The Picture of Dorian Gray” present influence and manipulation through male figures? 

As well as carrying the value of half an A Level – and UCAS points – the real value of the EPQ is the preparation it gives students for university-level academic research and independent study. Students are free to choose the focus for their project, often selecting topics that both interest them and are useful as a pathway to their future career.