Message 1. What is the EPQ and why is it important? Increasing in popularity alongside demise of general studiesInternational equivalents.Today we are using the EPQ as an example of a way to do outreach to school students; links research skills to piece of work they are doing in school.
ALT VERSION of slide 3.
What the EPQ is replacing. Rising in popularity in the EPQ – context.Reasons why General studies is irrelevant. being discontinued in 2017 (?), irrelevant to modern student needs and does not prepare them for further education or employment.Quote from department of education saying why general studies is no longer useful to life or relevant for students.flying in newspaper headlines of “General studies dead etc”Department for Education (2015) “During development of subject content, it has become clear that for one subject, AS and A level general studies, it has not been possible to draft subject content in accordance with the department’s guidance and Ofqual’s principles for reformed AS and A levels. As a result general studies AS and A level will not be available for teaching in 2017, and will not be consulted upon.”
Message 1 Since its introduction in 2009, EPQ submissions have risen continuously and General Studies have petered out.
How it started:Message 2: Bristol’s approach ¼Started with BGS not having a school Librarian. Local, fee-paying grammar. Putting candidates forward for EPQ and asked to use our resources and give an intro talk. Comp access came later. IL focussed session came later.How it grew:Redo graph to be one; BGS then other schools joining.University of Bristol’s Involvement:Supported 39 Bristol Grammar School students in 2010We became involved in 2012 Expanded to other schools in 2014 Currently offered to 12 fee-paying and state schools from Cheltenham to Weston-Super-Mare, engaging with approx. 400 studentsIncreases outreach and engagement instantly. Tapping into an existing need in schools; they request to come to us!
Message 2: Bristol’s approach ¾GET IMAGE FROM PRO OF OPEN DAY/AMBASSADOR3 dates in June and July – does not clash with our students peak times 45 mins research skills lecture Using Library Search – our catalogue Reading and reference use of print collections Access to eResources with visitor login Handout of free online resources and mapVisit to relevant library depending on topicStudent ambassadors for directional help - WP Optional follow up visitsTheory of what we do e.g. give leaflet = enables further work from home with visitsIdeology/reasoning. Concepts Demistify with lecture. Understand it is daunting being in a big Uni. Simplified content to physical books – feedback suggested the success of finding one useful book is better than demos of how to use multiple online resources.Split them up according to subject, ambassador physically takes them to relevant Library. Give them a map and suggestions of where to meet at lunch, park, teachers know where to meet their students etc.Inspire the students to become confident independent researchers by giving them a starting point and handouts. Opening up our collections and enabling with the skills to use them. Contact with the ambassadors who have been through this same process to show it is possible and within their reach!Welcoming to a seemingly exlusive/closed off environment. Walking around the departments where academics are doing work; they can visualise a career or studying period which before was unknown.Been to the Library. Tangible aim, takes it out of the realm of the unknown, less frightening prospect/leap from school.LL: WP and Membership co-ordinate invitations, room booking, allocation of places and IT logins. Roughly 130 places per lecture Follow up visit dates avoid our busiest periods e.g. exam periods, and beginning of term/induction periods/TB1. eResource available with follow up visits when 3 days notice is given.
Message 2: Bristol’s approach 4/4FIND IMAGE OF STUDENT USING AN IPAD Website Flipped classroom – look at resources first – make the most of their time with us and students from different schools are at the same level – online tutorials Padlet to submit queries/questions. Twitter #. Would be manned by us remotely but for the whole day to ensure replies. Approachable. Get on AQA’s website
IMAGE OF PILING UP CHAIRS – SETTING UP A ROOM/SOMETHINGMessage 3: How and what you can take from Bristol’s approach 1/3 – who we work with setting it upIf you want to set up something similar follow these steps:Get your timing right: avoid your exams but schools have different EPQ submission dates and term times to unisWork with closely with WP for booking Contact exam board. Work from specific assessment objectives and criteria. E.g. AQA give their mark scheme and criteria online; easy to cater your IL training to those skills. Design your content to match that, rather than generic library inductions. Bear in mind they are possibly only here for one day so how can you help those students meet the criteria of there exam board best.Make use of other department contacts: WP to reach out to schools in their connected network, advertise, manage bookings. Find out if your WP department has relationships with schools; use those IT for login/eResources help IT may have the infrastructure to help get bulk guest access, check your local IT policy to see what access can be provided. Make sure each departmental library knows and has staff who are welcoming or available to help with queries
If possible use current students; enough employed student reps or volunteers who do similar work on open days; closer to the visitors age so are more relatable and have a different perspective to us and give insight to what living at uni is like (lifestyle, any worries about moving) big brother/sister figure.
Speak to AQA/exam board to say you now offer this sort of help; may put you in contact with nearby schools who are submitting EPQs
IMAGE HAPPY A LEVEL STUDENTSMessage 3: How and what you can take from Bristol’s approach 3/3 – How it should run on the dayExact timetable/layout of day: example day from UoB.Go through each section of day, saying “make sure there is time for…”Give them plenty of hands on time which is actually productive. Encourage them to stay for the whole day (by meeting at lunch). Ensure there is enough help on hand that they don’t get disheartened if they can’t seem to find what they want after a few tries; present and approachable student ambasadors.!
Give them time to do it! Time to use the resources and familarise themselves Instils concepts of IL to potential UGs
IMAGE LOUD HAILERS
Message 3: How and what you can take from Bristol’s approach 2/3This is how it’s worked for us but it will be different in every institution, for every school, and maybe for different exam boardsPart of the process should be gathering feedback, analysing and acting upon it. Changes for next year.Important to say we’ve changed it every year; responded to feedback,
Introducing information literacy through EPQ support: the development of the University of Bristol Library's school engagement programme - Lucy Langley & Lucy Wilkins
literacy through EPQ support:
the development of the University of Bristol
Library’s school engagement programme.
Lucy Langley and Lucy Wilkins
What is the EPQ?
• 5000 word essay (or
• Similar to the IB
• Seen as a boost to
Slides 1, 6 and 12, images copyright University of Bristol.
All other images courtesy of pixabay.com.
AQA (2015a) Why choose this specification? Available at:
11 November 2015].
AQA (2015b) General Studies A (2760). Available at: http://www.aqa.org.uk/subjects/general-
studies/a-level/general-studies-a-2760 [Accessed 11 November 2015].
BBC (2015) Uni entry: 'Record number' of sixth-formers put in extra projects. Available at:
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/education-33819871 [Accessed: 11 November 2015].
Department for Education (2015) Reformed GCSE and A Level subject content consultation.
ormed_GCSE_and_A_level_subject_content_consultation.pdf [Accessed: 11 November
Wiggins, K. (2015) ‘The End Is Nigh for “Too Easy” a-Level’, The Times Educational
Supplement, 16 October, p.12.