presentation evening For Extended project qualification

So proud of our Year 13s as they present their fantastic research projects!

Tonight we were proud to host an amazing evening showcasing the commitment, intellect and academic talent and drive of our Year 13 Extended Project Qualification (EPQ) candidates.

The opportunity to undertake the EPQ is a crucial part of our provision for KS5 students, and is an invaluable opening into researching a subject in a field which is of specific interest to them, and which will contribute not only to their academic development but ultimately to their professional aspirations and university applications.

The EPQ is led by the students, supported by staff mentors and by EPQ Centre Co-ordinator at UGS Mrs Nanvazadeh (pictured below leading the welcome to the evening in our Theatre), and it is often in an area of study that is distinct from their A level courses. This enables students to demonstrate to universities and to future employers that their skills, knowledge, expertise, and self-directed study extend above and beyond the requirements of the syllabus and their A Level subjects and courses. And it is an opportunity to develop and show-case independent learning, initiative, planning, preparation and analytical skills, and to build towards the final part of their assessment: the presentation of their research project and its findings.

The presentations ran concurrently in different areas of school as there were so many students involved (listed below is the extensive range of research projects undertaken this year), and the quality and the commitment to study and research demonstrated was phenomenal. 

I was fortunate to be in the audience for some of these, including presentations by George and Cait, who are in the lead picture.

George's EPQ research focused on the connections between the lack of public transport and social exclusion in Gwynedd. He presented eloquently the motivation behind his choice of material, his family connections to the area, and his extensive knowledge of the issues experienced by the residents. And he intelligently guided us through the process of conducting his primary and secondary research, and on the interesting findings, conclusions and outcome.

George also shared an insightful appraisal of how undertaking the project contributed to his personal and academic development, and propelled him forward towards the next step. He astutely fielded the many questions from the audience, and from his assessor, Mrs Glen, with aplomb and charm, and his level of commitment to the project and sense of personal enrichment from having undertaken it shone through.

Cait presented on her research into the evolution of the narrative of Disney Princesses, and the correlation between moments in time and the relationship between gender, society and patriarchy. Cait's intellectual evaluation of the subject, and how undertaking the project compounded her aspiration to research Gender Inequality at undergraduate and ultimately postgraduate level, was truly impressive; and it was evident that the project has contributed significantly to developing her future aspirations to work with children and young people. Like George, Cait shared how the EPQ process has developed her skills in planning, evaluation, time-management, and referencing; and she likewise demonstrated confidence in fielding questions about both the subject, and the research process.

In this session it was also fantastic to hear Grace deliver a presentation on whether women are disadvantaged in the processes of city-planning, and Daniel on what makes a successful Youth Theatre Director. Again, both were impressively articulate presenters, and it was clear how much both had gained from their involvement in the EPQ. Both elaborated on how much undertaking the project has developed transferable skills towards their ultimate objective of studying and working in Planning and Psychology respectively at University and beyond, and Daniel shared how it has massively positively impacted his confidence, leadership and interpersonal skills.

Well done to all our Year 13 EPQ students on completing your projects, and on delivering this impressive and enriching evening!

With huge thanks to all the students involved, to the Senior Prefects who gave their time to help at the event, to the staff and mentors for supporting our amazing students, to Mrs Nanvazadeh for leading the EPQ, and to all who attended the evening in support of the students.