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The Extended Project Qualification or EPQ is often what makes students stand out as being that little bit special. The EPQ is the perfect blend with your BTEC or A level qualifications.

The EPQ offered by AQA allows students to embark on a self-directed and self-motivated project. Students choose a topic, plan, research and develop their idea, and create a finished product. This product can be a research-based written report or essay, a production such as a charity or sports event, or an artefact such as a piece of art, computer game, or realised design.

This qualification is an increasingly popular choice with students and teachers alike. It provides an opportunity for you to extend your abilities beyond the A level and BTEC syllabus, stand out amongst your peers, and prepare for university or your future career. It can also be used to earn extra UCAS points.

Taking on an EPQ enables you to develop independent learning skills and to demonstrate that you are capable of working on your own initiative.

The skills that you develop with the EPQ are exactly the skills you need at university. It allows you to communicate your passion and enthusiasm about something in which you have a genuine interest.

With the EPQ, you have the opportunity to select a topic that you really want to engage in, and to learn the skills that it takes to be able to deliver that successfully.

To complete an EPQ you will need to not only plan and review your own work but also research effectively, using the internet, books, and other resources beyond a standard A-Level text book.

Employers and universities know that a student who has taken up the EPQ clearly has enthusiasm for their subject and a drive to learn more, and that really helps an application stand out from the crowd.