Emanuel is using the EPQ as a way of encouraging students to extend their thinking and reasoning processes, and by teaching them an array of important academic skills regarding research, project planning, evaluation of sources, self-evaluation, presentation skills etc. to help them develop confidence as independent learners, preparing them for the advanced academic work at university.
If students pick their EPQ titles shrewdly it is a way to demonstrate their enthusiasm for their intended degree subject by pursuing their studies far beyond the A level syllabus. It enhances the quality of their UCAS personal statements as it enables them to show evidence of the ‘super-curricular learning’ and extra reading that universities are looking for as they can write about a real piece of independent research that they have accomplished.
Equally, a student can pursue an independent interest in a niche area of research or link disparate curriculum subjects, or pursue a creative passion not accommodated by their A level choices. In this way Emanuel is offering students the opportunity to expand their research into an area of learning about which they feel passionately, but which would not be addressed at all in the conventional A level curriculum. This also demonstrates a student’s flair, creativity and curiosity as an independent learner to future employers and university selection panels.