EPQ Mentoring Fair

Workshop setting

The University supports local sixth form students (age 16-18) completing the Extended Project Qualification, where students write a research project around a topic of their choice. The mentoring fair is an opportunity for students to discuss their projects in small groups and receive advice from researchers who work in similar areas. We are looking for researchers of any career stage and faculty to be mentors for this one-off session. This is a great opportunity to develop your skills in working with young people and support the University's mission to connect with the local community.

Key dates

EPQ Mentoring Fair: Tuesday 5th November, 1.30-3.30pm (Anson Rooms, Students' Union)
Training with public engagement team and teacher: Wednesday 23rd October, 1-2pm (Room 4.01, School of Education)

EPQ Mentoring Fair background

The Extended Project Qualification (EPQ) is a qualification that Sixth Form students take alongside their A-Levels. It involves them completing a self-motivated research project where they either write a 5000-word report or create a "product" (e.g. an artefact, performance, music composition) with a 1000-word supporting statement.

The EPQ is different from A Levels as the project can be on any topic that the student chooses and doesn't usually involve much formal teaching. Teachers take on a different supporting role to guide students through the qualification. As the EPQ is based on research skills, we have worked with local teachers to develop the EPQ Mentoring Fair which makes the most of the research expertise held at the University. The EPQ Mentoring Fair is open to approximately 150 students and a variety of local schools attend.

During the Mentoring Fair researchers have an informal chat with a small group (3-5) of students who are doing projects that are similar to their work. The students work on a wide variety of topics, so we match students with the researcher that matches their project most closely. This doesn't mean researchers need specific knowledge in their project area, as general advice is still welcome - particularly around the research process, report writing and where to access information online etc.

Each year around 40 mentors take part and previous mentors have told us it's a great opportunity to develop communication skills and connect with future students as well as enjoying being able to pass on advice that is gratefully received by students! Any current researcher is welcome - regardless of career stage and faculty.

The EPQ Mentoring Fair is delivered in collaboration with the University's Outreach team and there is a write up of previous years here.

How to take part

If you’d like to take part, please email Diane Thorne in the Public Engagement team. The deadline to register is Friday 11th October.