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Higher Level Individual Project

In recent years an increasing number of our most able students have taken an independent qualification alongside their other GCSEs. The Higher Level Individual Project is 100% internally assessed – there is no external exam. 

The Qualification can be taken at two levels: Level 2 Higher - equivalent to ½ GCSE and graded A*-C, or Level 3 Extended - equivalent to ½ GCE A Level and graded A*-E. At UCC we do Level 2.

We feel that by undertaking the project students will develop independent learning skills; improve oral and written communication skills; develop investigative skills; learn how to be a critical thinker and become confident in project management

The topic chosen can either be based on a current interest or area of study or something that the student would like to develop in the future.  It can take the form of a written report, a design, a presentation or an artefact.

In completing the project students are asked to produce a proposal form, a logbook and a written outcome of no more than 2,500 words in which they are asked to:

  • Choose a topic and write a rationale as to their choice
  • Write an action plan and time plan
  • Conduct both primary and secondary research – investigate at least 2 related areas
  • Analyse their research
  • Evaluate the project

These are some of the sample topics for report based projects:

  • Has the introduction of organic foods changed the way we shop and eat?
  • Explore the use of public transport in your local area – could it be improved?
  • Should children be forced to exercise?
  • Do food labels affect how people shop?

These are some of the sample topics for ‘artefact’ based projects:

  • Design and make a mask for a character in a play or film that is based on an animal or fantasy creature
  • Produce a range of coordinated surface pattern designs for use in a ‘themed’ restaurant
  • Take an existing everyday object and redesign it to make it more effective, marketable, attractive, fashionable, environmentally friendly, etc
  • Design and make the prototype for a mural panel, or piece of public sculpture that commemorates an event from local history

Over the last three years UCC students have enjoyed considerable success with projects such as:

  • A set design for Alice in Wonderland
  • Why is vintage fashion so popular?
  • A café design for community use in a new school
  • Are music videos more about product placement than the music?
  • Is airbrushing images right or wrong?
  • Should sports stars be used for advertising purpose?
  • How did Shostakovich’s music reflect the political tensions of the time?

Our students achieve a 100% pass rate with the vast majority receiving either A* or A grades.