Supervising an extended project
A few tips to help you choose your approach
Different awarding organisations recommend different models of support for EPQ students. Some prefer a student’s supervisor to be a subject specialist with expertise in the relevant area, while others prefer the supervisor to have a different subject background. Whichever approach you choose, each student should have a subject specialist (whether the supervisor or not) who can provide them with specific advice for their project.
Where to provide guidance
There are particular areas of STEM projects, and particularly practical STEM projects, that will require more specific guidance – most of these areas should be covered by a subject specialist:
- what makes a good hypothesis
- how to analyse and present data
- health and safety
- ethics (see the Wellcome Trust’s ‘Ensuring your research is ethical’ guide).
Health and safety
If students are doing a practical project, their supervisor should check that their work is appropriately safe, or that safeguards have been put in place. If the student’s project supervisor is not a subject specialist, or has no STEM expertise, a practical project should be checked over by someone who’s able to verify the health and safety of the approach.