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La Retraithe Sixth Form


Exam Board: AQA

Entry Criteria: APS of 6.8 or above at GCSE.

The Extended Project Qualification (EPQ) offers students the opportunity to learn high-level key skills, highly regarded by employers and universities alike and supports transition in to A Level and Higher Education.

What is the EPQ?

At Level 3, the EPQ is valued at 50% of a full A Level in the UCAS tariff.

Students must plan and complete a substantial independent project of their choice, creating either an artefact, written dissertation, investigation or performance/event, equivalent to 5,000 words. In addition, a presentation must be delivered on their project to an audience, including teacher-assessors, with a 5-minute question and answer session which contributes to the overall assessment. Projects must differ from what students are studying at A Level.

The project requires a production log to record specific stages of the project, which contributes to the result. Overall, the process tends to take approximately 120 hours, with most students utilising personal time at the end of Year 12 to conduct preliminary research and finalise the project in the start of Year 13.

Teaching and guidance will support students with planning, research, and presentation skills, keep students on track with the project and negotiate the project topic. During the process, you will develop as an independent, reflective learner, and acquire knowledge and transferable skills which are attractive and invaluable for further study and the workplace.


Year 12 - Curriculum Map

Why study the EPQ?

Students at La Retraite who have completed the EPQ have successfully gone on to apply and gain interviews & offers from Oxbridge, study Medicine at Kings College London, Law at SOAS, Law at York, and PPE at Southampton for example.

Our current students have gained excellent offers from Oxbridge & Top Russell Group universities partly due to the independent learning skills and knowledge they have demonstrated whilst completing their EPQ.

The EPQ provides prospective employers and universities with clear evidence that students have interests and ability which goes beyond the A Level curriculum. It demonstrates that students are capable of undertaking independent reading, research and essay writing with undergraduate degrees require. It is an exceptional opportunity to develop academic skills, all of which are highly valued by Russell Group universities.