The Perse School

Independent Study

Developing university-style independent study

Our approach

Independent research is a major feature of learning at the Upper. We actively encourage all pupils to develop their abilities in this discipline, and provide opportunities for independent research: identifying areas of interest, conducting investigations and presenting findings in writing and in person. From undertaking a ‘mini investigation’ in Year 7 to a formal Higher Project Qualification (worth half a GCSE) in Year 10, and our prestigious sixth form research programme, pupils learn how to take responsibility for their own study, discover the joys of independent learning and understand how to work effectively with mentors and supervisors.

Inspiration for independent research comes from the many academics, medics and scientists who visit the School each term to share their own research with students through our 42 programme of visiting speakers.

A range of the results of students’ independent study is published on our super-curricular blog, Perse Studio.

Year 7 - Mini investigations

Pupils carry out a small research investigation and enjoy an end-of-year afternoon tea event - the chance to discuss their research informally with an appropriate teacher.

Year 8 - Perse Project Qualification

Students undertake a more in-depth study of a topic of their choice working with a staff mentor. They write a report and take a 'stall' at an end-of-year feedback fair, at which they present their findings.

Year 10 - Higher Project Qualification

An externally assessed independent research qualification worth half a GCSE, but with its real value in nurturing intellectual ambition and research skills.

Sixth Form - Rouse Research Award Project or Extended Project Qualification

Our research programme culminates in a prestigious finale. Starting in the January of the Lower Sixth, students complete either an internally-assessed research project, the Rouse Research Award, where assessment focuses on the findings, or an externally-assessed research qualification, the EPQ, where the marking focuses on the research process.

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