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Boost learners’ employability skills through ASDAN’s new EPQ

Boost learners’ employability skills through ASDAN’s new EPQ

Students will have the opportunity to gain valuable employability skills through ASDAN’s Extended Project Qualification (EPQ).

The EPQ has been designed to support learners aged 16-19 with the transition to higher education and the world of work through completing a self-selected project.

ASDAN has developed a new approach to this Level 3 qualification by supporting students to build their project around a work experience placement.

Equivalent to half an A-level and attracting up to 28 UCAS points, the EPQ provides learners with the skills that employers and higher education institutions are looking for.

The ASDAN EPQ, developed for learners who are studying full-time, includes a fully resourced 30-hour taught element to support learners in designing and undertaking their project.

It is expected that learners undertaking the qualification will have achieved at least four GCSEs including English and mathematics (grades 9-4).

Study skills young people gain through the taught element of the EPQ include:

  • project planning
  • improved organisational ability
  • problem solving
  • decision-making
  • creativity
  • communication

The broad employability skills students gain through a work-based project include:

  • teamwork
  • self-management
  • resilience
  • self-awareness
  • initiative
  • customer awareness

Candidates, who are graded A* to E, complete one of the following:

  • a 5,000 word dissertation
  • a performance with a 1,000 word report
  • an artefact (eg book, short film, fashion show) with a 1,000 word report

The project concludes with an observed presentation and has a total qualification time (TQT) of 120 hours.

Martina Veale, ASDAN Education Director, said: “At ASDAN, we believe that high quality work experience is essential to a young person’s education because it provides an introduction to the world of work, helps young people develop vital employability skills and knowledge, and enables them to explore different career options. In addition, work experience can boost young people’s engagement, motivation and aspirations, helping them see the link between education and employment. 

“What’s different about ASDAN’s EPQ is that the resources have been developed to support the achievement of the qualification through a work placement.

“Our EPQ will help candidates when it comes to university applications and entering employment because they will be able to demonstrate how they have engaged with employers to undertake a project that supports a real organisation or business, especially if this is within their chosen study or career area.”

Developed in collaboration with education and skills specialists Carina Consulting, ASDAN’s EPQ includes detailed guidance materials for teachers, learners, employers and parents. These will help the candidate choose a suitable project and complete it within the context of an employment setting.

ASDAN’s EPQ is currently being delivered by a select number of schools and colleges and will be available more widely for teaching from September 2019. Training for practitioners hoping to deliver the EPQ will take place in the summer term 2019.

For more information on EPQ training opportunities and guidance on delivering this qualification, please visit the course page