Extended Project Qualification - Level 3 at Kingsbridge Community College
What is the Extended Project Qualification?
The AQA extended project is a Level 3 qualification that is worth half an A Level graded from A* to E and is awarded with UCAS points. It is designed to prepare students for university style independent research and essay writing. It provides an opportunity for students to extend their abilities beyond the A Level syllabus, stand out and prepare for university or their future career. This involves students creating an independent research report that is based upon using a wide variety of academic sources. Each person is supported by a supervisor who assists with planning, managing sources and reflection, this is alongside taught sessions where the skills of research and writing are delivered. Students have the option of either writing a 5000 word minidissertation or creating a physical artifact/ completing a performance and writing a 1500 word write up.
Why choose the Extended Project Qualification?
The EPQ was created in order to help students bridge the gap between the requirements of A Level study and study at a university level. It is designed for those that want to develop their ability to work independently and create arguments of their own. Students need to be able to take interest in something in order to be able to research into it to the required standard. Students get to choose what their project is about so will often be something that they are passionate about or even a topic that they might not have been able to study at A Level. This year these topics have ranged from dissertations on methods for controlling pesticide resistance, the impacts of removing capital punishment in the UK, what ‘success’ really is as well as the regression of equality in Russian culture. One student completing the practical project is making a Roman sword in the traditional manner and another recreating Ancient Egyptian artwork on papyrus.
Universities very much appreciate students completing an EPQ and some even lower their entrance requirements to reflect this (University of Bristol – “It is expected that some admissions tutors may make two alternative offers to those offering this qualification, one of which involves success in the Extended Project for example either AAA at A-level or AAB at A-level plus Extended Project).” Cambridge University states that “We welcome the introduction of the Extended Project and would encourage you to undertake one as it will help you develop independent study and research skills and ease the transition from school/college to higher education.”
What kind of student is this course suitable for?
The course will appeal to those students who:
- want to develop their academic skills in researching, reading and writing
- are interested in studying a topic of their own choosing in detail engaging with high quality academic research on the matter
- have the ability to see a task through to completion
- enjoy communicating an argument in the written form
- those that are creative in practical pursuits (creating an artefact or undertaking a performance)
There are no specific entrance requirements for the EPQ but you should be able to communicate effectively in writing. You don’t have to be intending to go to university to study this as it helps all students in developing skills that are useful in later life.
How to apply
If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact Kingsbridge Community College directly.