The EPQ is not a new qualification but discussing it with Nick Brown, Head of Languages at Lincoln Castle Academy, I started to understand its real potential to promote languages…
I first came across the EPQ at my previous school. Like in many schools, it was used as a way to enrich the curriculum in the VI Form. As such, it is a way to get learners to get a Level 3 qualification as well as develop their research skills and engage with content that is within and beyond the curriculum.
Full details about the qualification can be found here and the Future Ready website but the main feature of the qualification is that, following their own in-depth study, students are asked to produce a project with ONE of the following outcomes:
- A dissertation
- An investigation or a field study
- A performance
- An artefact
The work submitted for assessment must be produced in English but-and this is VERY important for language teachers-the research and supporting notes can be in ANY language, which would naturally occur by listening, speaking, reading and note-taking in the language.
If the project is used to complement A Level teaching and learning, the topics can be inspired by some of the A Level work, provided it does not replicate their Independent Research Project (IRP).
The project can also allow students to explore their cultural heritage or the cultural heritage of other people in the community as well as offer them an opportunity to pursue an interest outside of the curriculum. This could be of particular interest for EAL students, as a way to celebrate their cultural heritage, enhance their literacy in English as well as gain a recognised Level 3 qualification.
Examples of projects for MFL could include:
Has French cinema been a major influence on the world stage? (dissertation-extension from A Level film study)
Is Colombian Spanish a better dialect than other forms? (dissertation)
What trends can be seen in the use of slang words by modern day German teenagers? (investigation/field study)
Interpretation/Performance of a play
Short film in the style of a specific director (artefact)
Self-published book of new translations of poems (artefact)
If you would like to register your interest in the Extended Project Qualification (EPQ) or find out more information about MFL-focused titles, click here.
And there is more….
The EPQ is also available for KS4 pupils as a Higher Project Qualification (HPQ, Level 2 qualification) and a Foundation Project Qualification (FPQ, Level 1 qualification). Like the EPQ these qualifications aim to develop learner’s transferable skills and preparing them to the world of work by making them more organised and independent. More details here.