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Higher and Extended Project Qualifications

Association of Colleges (AoC) is working with AQA to launch a new and exciting award for student research projects. Colleges will be invited to submit some of their most interesting and exciting student research project work from higher and extended project qualifications once they have been awarded by the relevant awarding body.

The aim is to recognise, reward and celebrate all the fantastic higher and extended project work developed by students across AoC member colleges.

As well as to raise the profile of the level 3 Extended Project Qualifications (EPQ) and the level 2 Higher Project Qualification (HPQ) across colleges and to celebrate the amazing range of research being produced and the skills being developed by students in colleges. The award is exam board neutral and is open to AoC member colleges. If the pilot is a success, AoC will consider establishing this as an annual award.

Winners will be publicly recognised and celebrated across the college sector, by AoC and AQA at an award presentation with high profile guests. Their work will be shared on the AoC website and publicised via social media. Winning colleges will also receive a plaque to recognise their achievement.

The award will be launched in June, giving colleges time to consider potential submissions. Colleges will be asked for an estimate of likely potential entries by the end of July with a final submission date at the end of October. Judging will take place in the autumn.

  • Launch: Monday 20 June
  • College submits estimate of potential entries: by Friday 29 July 2022
  • Final submission date: Friday 11 November 2022
  • Judging period: November/December 2022
  • Award ceremony 24th Jan 2023 (AQA headquarters, Tavistock square, London). Winners announced (first, second and third prize for EPQ and HPQ).


  • Entries must be from students enrolled at an AoC member college, entered for an EPQ or HPQ in November 2021 or 2022 and must be approved by the student and their college.
  • The submission must be a completed EPQ or HPQ which has been submitted and awarded by a relevant examination board. Live assessment material cannot be entered.
  • The total number of projects submitted by a single college can be:
    • For colleges with 20 or fewer candidates: up to 3 entries.
    • For colleges with over 20 candidates: up to 20% of total entries.

Key Documents

Project award entry form