3 Reasons to take the EPQ

It gives you an experience of writing at university level.

I cannot explain the extent of how much the EPQ aided me when I got to university. The EPQ is 5000 words, which means 2000 word essays at university seemed easy. Moreover, I gained experience in referencing, which is extremely important at university to right; they encourage accuracy of referencing in first year where your mark doesn’t count towards your final degree. This also meant that from my first assignment, I didn’t find referencing hard at all, due to my familiarity with it. Also, you have a lot of freedom in terms of how you write your EPQ; it certainly emphasised to me that at university, I wouldn’t have to write in an elevated style to achieve high marks.

It gives you confidence in presenting.

The presentation component of the EPQ is extremely helpful in allowing you to gain an awareness of how the process of the EPQ helped to shape your work. The presentation is advised to be 10 minutes long, which is roughly the length of presentations that you do certainly in your first year at university. The questions that are asked at the end of your presentation are another element that gives you a full experience of presenting. You come out of the presentation feeling confident in yourself and the detailed feedback that you will receive is vital to allow you to reflect on how you may improve if you have to do presentations as part of your university course.

It is completely different from A levels.

A levels can be extremely restrictive, with tight coursework word counts and exam timings. Also, in terms of marking criteria to achieve, it can sometimes seem mundane and ‘tick box’ like. With the EPQ, you can explore a multitude of topics; often people pick a topic that is closely linked to what they will be studying at university: this could potentially aid you in deciding or even ruling out topics that you may want to explore in your dissertation at university.

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