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FAQs Undergraduate UK

What is an EPQ?


The Extended Project Qualification or EPQ as it is more commonly referred to, is a standalone qualification which is often taken alongside A-levels.

Through the EPQ qualification you will either complete a research project of 5,000 words and give a presentation, or you can choose to give a performance or physical project, and a shorter written report. You can choose the area of study and we often recommend it is related to your ambitions for further study at university and may be in a subject not offered at A-level. It is often used in lieu of a fourth A-level.

The EPQ is highly valued by UK universities (especially the Russell Group) and carries UCAS tariff points equivalent to half an A-level. As well as boosting your UCAS tariff, you can use your EPQ grade to receive a lower offer: many Russell Group universities will give a dual offer, for example, Queen Mary may provide a dual offer of ABB at A-level or BBB with an A in the EPQ.

Can I only take the EPQ when I study A-levels?


The EPQ is primarily aimed at students taking A-levels and is offered to them all. However, it is also open to students studying our International Business Foundation course, provided they have a high IELTS already and are therefore able to use some of the language lessons timetabled to study independently for the EPQ instead. One of our students who took the IBF also took an EPQ which helped him to get into his key university: The University of London, Queen Marys. 

The skills covered in the EPQ are very much aligned with the CSS module in our Advanced Level Foundation (all recognised by universities) and therefore ALF students do not need to take the EPQ.

Is the EPQ used in place of A-levels?


The EPQ is studied in addition to 3 A-levels, and is a chance for students to explore areas they cannot cover in their studies. Universities often prefer students to have 3 A-levels and the EPQ rather than 4 A-levels. The UCAS points awarded are the equivalent of half an A-level and can be calculated in a university offer: many Russell Group universities will also lower their entry requirements if the student will also use their EPQ when applying. A good example of this is The University of Birmingham who say:

Applicants who offer the EPQ and meet our offer criteria will be made the standard offer for their programme of choice and an alternative offer which will be one grade lower plus a grade A in the EPQ. For example where our standard offer is AAA, the offer would be AAA or AAB plus A in the EPQ.

Is the EPQ compulsory?


No and it is recommended only for students who are strong academically and will be able to cope with the demands of successfully producing a large project independently, alongside their A-level studies.

Is the Advanced Level Foundation the same as an A-level?


The Kings Advanced Level Foundation is based on A-level syllabuses, assessed against A-level benchmarks and moderated by an independent Advisory Board of external examiners. There are a several subject choices and pathways leading to a huge variety of possible degree courses. Kings Advanced Level Foundation students regularly win places at the UK’s top 20 universities.

For students with appropriate IELTS and academic levels, the Advanced Level Foundation can be followed as a standalone three-term accelerated course. This means that it is possible to complete the Advanced Level Foundation in one academic year, whilst A-levels take a minimum of two academic years to complete.

How much help will I get from Kings with my university application?


Lots! Students on academic preparation programmes will take part in the University Application Programme, which runs in parallel with your main academic course. It is carefully designed, personalised programme which progressively builds your knowledge and experience about the university options available to you, and ensures you take the right application steps at the right time. All the time, you have access to our expert university counsellors to guide you at every step of the way.

When and how do I choose the subjects I would like to take?


Subjects are chosen during your first week at College. You will have the opportunity to talk your study plans through with our Academic Department, who will be advise which subjects you need to take to follow your chosen pathway. You will also have the opportunity to join some sample lessons if you are undecided between subjects. 

How many students will be in my class?


At Kings, it is important to us that our classes remain as small as possible. This way, you will get lots of individual attention and support, giving you the best chance of success. For our A-level groups, class sizes range from 4-8, and for our GCSE, Foundation and English for Academic Study groups, class sizes are between 8 – 10.

Where will my classmates come from?


Our students come from all over the world, and it is important to us that our colleges have a truly international feel. You will be taking classes alongside students from lots of different countries, which means that you will all communicate in English - at all times. It also means that you will learn lots about other countries and cultures, and that you’ll make friends from all over the world.

Can I choose what accommodation I stay in during my course?


Each of our UK locations offers a range of accommodation options, and providing you satisfy the age requirements (and that there is availability) you should be able to stay where you like. Be sure to tell the accommodation officer at your College straight away if there is any problem with where you live, this way it can be resolved immediately.

What can I do in my free time?


At Kings, we want to make sure that you are always learning – both inside and outside the classroom. We also want to make sure that you have fun. At every location, we arrange activities, clubs and visits which you can take part in. These might include trips to local cinemas, bowling alleys or sports venues, and at the weekend, further afield to other cities in the UK. Clubs and societies vary from College to College but might include debating clubs, lecture programmes or more specialist options such as Astronomy Club (currently offered in Bournemouth).

If you want to apply to a UK university, you might also want to take part in schemes such as the Duke of Edinburgh Award or the Trinity Arts Award Scheme, which will give you qualifications to enhance your profile when you apply to universities. Alternatively, you could help to organise or take part in large College events such as arts productions or the end-of-year ball.

Do I need to apply for a visa?


If you live outside the European Union, you will almost certainly be classed as a visa national and will need to obtain a visa before you can study in the UK.

If you are a European citizen living within the EU, you will not need a visa to student in England.

If you are classed as a visa national, depending on the length of time you wish to study you may require a student visitor visa or a general student visa.

For the latest information and guidance, we suggest you visit the UK Visa and Immigration website.

Do I need specific insurance to study in the UK?


When you travel to the UK to study, you need to be confident that everything is done to make sure you are protected and safe.

We have developed an insurance policy which is especially designed for international students in conjunction with Endsleigh, a major UK insurance provider.

The insurance policy gives a very high level of cover and will protect you against loss of possessions as well as accident or emergency.

To include insurance cover, complete the student insurance section when you apply online or when you complete the Academic Courses Registration Form or the English Courses Enrolment Form.

Can I get a scholarship to study at Kings?


Each year, Kings students have a number of scholarship opportunities available to them.

These scholarships are available to our students during their time at Kings, or even afterwards, during their university studies.

What is the Russell Group?


Yes. Provided you have the academic ability, and the motivation, to apply for one of these top UK universities, we can help you do so. Every year at Kings we have students who win places at these elite universities.