Extended Project qualification (EPQ)

Departmental Courses

Extended Project Qualification

Handbooks and Summer Tasks

For those students achieving 5 or above in English we are offering the EPQ.

The EPQ is a qualification designed to extend and develop your skills in independent research and project management. The EPQ allows you to embark on a largely self-directed project, by taking responsibility for the choice and design of an individual project. You will be required to research your chosen topic thoroughly. As this is studied alongside your A levels/BTEC qualifications, you will have 3 just timetabled lessons with a supervisor over the fortnight to guide you through your project, the rest must be carried out independently.

The EPQ runs over one year and is normally taken in Year 12. The project consists of the 3 components;

  1. The written report/essay on your chosen topic (approx. 5000 words)
  2. Completion of online journal about journey through the project (Project Q)
  3. Presentation to class and supervisor about the EPQ project.

Why study an EPQ?

The EPQ is taken alongside 3 full A level or BTEC equivalent and is worth up to 28 UCAS points.

The skills pupils develop and show case during the EPQ are to;

  • become more critical, reflective and independent learners
  • develop and apply decision-making and problem-solving skills
  • increase their planning, research, analysis, synthesis, evaluation and presentation skills
  • learn to apply new technologies confidently
  • demonstrate creativity, initiative and enterprise.

There has been huge interest, particularly from Further Education institutions for students who have successfully completed the EPQ. Some university lower the entry requirements to their degree courses on competition of a successful project to students.


The EPQ is a coursework-based qualification, where students submit their projects for marking and moderation towards the end of the first year.

Contact for more Information:

Mrs N Godden (n.godden@poolehigh.poole.sch.uk)

A-level Further Maths goes far deeper into the study of Mathematics. This is a course for those who love the subject, and want to explore some of Mathematics’ more complicated patterns and problems. Those taking Further Maths will also need to take A-level Mathematics. Further Mathematicians at Poole High School are given lots of support in a small class setting.

Whilst this course is a challenge, the large Maths department at Poole High School is more than prepared to support our students.  We offer a substantial 11 hours of lessons per fortnight, with teachers offering help outside of lessons as well.  There is a wealth of experience in the department, with different teachers specialising in Mechanics, Statistics, Algorithms, and Pure Maths.  We have lots of teachers who are passionate and excited to work with you!

Further Maths is possibly the hardest A level available in the country! But with great challenge comes great reward.  On the Further Maths course, we discover Complex Numbers – extending our number system to allow us to solve equations previously thought impossible! Further Maths should be studied by anyone with a love for Maths – regardless of future plans.  If you are a budding artist, football star, or anything in between and also have a fascination with Maths – Further Maths can still be for you! Further Maths covers some truly beautiful Maths, and helps to answer questions you never knew needed asking.
You will also cover matrices, vectors, proof, and many more beautiful topics.  Due to the difficulty of the course, we specify that applicants must obtain a grade 9 at GCSE to study Further Maths A Level. 


Due to the special nature of the Further Maths course.  We do offer students the opportunity to sit AS exams for Further Maths at the end of year 12.  Further Maths is allowed to be taken as a 4th option, and then students are encouraged to focus on 3 A levels by year 13.  The exams in Further Maths helps students make a decision whether to carry on Further Maths, or to ‘cash in’ their AS grade. 
There are 3 AS exams, with the OCR(MEI) exam board:  Core Pure (AS), Modelling with Algorithms, and Mechanics Minor.
At the end of year 13 there will be 4 exams: Core Pure, Modelling with Algorithms, Mechanics Minor, and Statistics Minor. 

For those achieving a 5 or above – we offer the new Core Maths class.  This has grown massively and is now one of the most popular 6th form choices.  Core Maths is taken alongside 3 full A levels or BTEC equivalent, and is worth up to 20 UCAS points.  
There has been huge demand from both employers and Further Education institutions for students to continue to study Maths post-16, to ensure they have the skills needed to access further education tasks in the workplace.

Universities and employers have spent years asking for a course like this.  Core Maths develops real-world problem-solving skills, using Maths.  Looking at finance, business, and getting students to use real-life data.  The course encourages problem solving, and deep understanding of the problems – before using common sense and highly skilled Mathematics to work through to a solution.  This course is ideal for anyone going on to study biology, psychology, sociology, geography, and many more subjects with subtler Maths elements that analyse studies.


Core Maths currently runs over just 1 year and exams are sat at the end of year 12. There are 2 exam papers to sit.

For students who have not managed to obtain a pass at GCSE Mathematics, we have two available paths to ensure all students leave our 6th form with a qualification in Mathematics. 
For students who achieved a grade 3 in year 11, they will attend and work towards a resit in GCSE Mathematics. 
For students with a grade less than 3, we will work towards a level 2 Functional skills Mathematics qualification.  This qualification focuses on real-life problems, and the paper have a theme throughout them.  The paper requires no algebra, but does still require problem solving and comprehension of problems.

There will be dedicated lessons for all students doing our resit courses, to help prepare for the multiple exam windows.   Once a pass is achieved, student can leave the resit course, and focus on their other qualifications in the 6th form.

For those who do not manage to obtain a pass in year 1, we will keep working hard to get a result in year 2.  Just as in year 1, as soon as a pass is obtained, student are no longer required to attend and can use the gained time to work on their other qualifications being studied in 6th form.


For the GCSE there is a first opportunity to sit 3 GCSE papers in November.  If this attempt does not result in a pass, then we will continue to work towards a pass for the summer exams in June.
For Functional skills, there are multiple assessment points throughout the year, and staff will work with students to decide when entry

Mathematics is a highly regarded subject and opens up unlimited career possibilities. A level Maths is one of the most respected and useful A Levels on offer.  A recent study from the University of Nottingham showed those who had taken A level Maths receive and 11% premium on their salary by the time they are 34, compared to peers without the A level. Due to Maths demand for; rigour, understanding, problem solving, and challenge, academics and employers value A level Maths as it shows an applicant has all of these skills. Mathematics degrees contain a broad range of disciplines; other related degrees are statistics, computing and combinations of these. Mathematics is a useful qualification to have if you want to study accounting, sciences, engineering, economics, computer science, business studies, medicine, architecture etc. Several of our students have gone straight into engineering apprenticeships.

A Level Further Mathematics is highly regarded by universities – and it is not uncommon for offers for course places to be lowered if they include Further Maths A level.  Those students wishing to pursue studies in Maths, Physics, Engineering, or Computer Science will often benefit in their first year at university – as Further Maths covers much content that is used at undergraduate level.