Though Fridays are usually the days allocated to our group meetings, during which we learn a new skill to apply to our projects, today was different in a number of ways. In place of the weekly after school meeting, I chose to attend the final presentations of three EPQ students in Year 13. This was incredibly beneficial to me for the following reasons:
1. It made me realise the importance of planning my project as thoroughly as possible.
All of the students whose presentations I watched said near enough the same thing: plan. Neither one could stress the importance of it more. It is essentially the backbone of your project, vital in keeping yourself on track and ensuring that you have time to complete everything without missing deadlines. Even more importantly, having a detailed plan allows you to manage your project effectively, splitting it into realistic sections which will consequently improve my organisation and time management. From hearing what the Year 13 students had to stay, I have decided to create a more detailed spreadsheet, such and a Gantt Chart, to help map out and organise my project to the highest quality.
2. It reminded me to reference consistently.
I am lucky enough to have fallen into this habit naturally, but the reminder to fully reference every one of my sources is much appreciated. To keep track of my sources I have included a full bibliography, which I make sure to update every time I use a new source. I keep this bibliography at the end of my Word document on which I type up all of my development for the novel; this includes the world backstory, character developments, plot drafts and symbolism. At this moment in time, the most common type of source that I have used are online, though I have also referenced a fair number of books (including my case studies).
3. It reassured me that my title does not have to be set in stone.
The title (i.e. the question that I am answering for my EPQ) is arguably the most important aspect of all. It sets the initial framework for my project, points me in the right direction and gives the examiner (and the audience, due to the public focus of my project) a good idea as to where my project should go. All three of the students who spoke today said that they had changed their titles innumerable times; one even changed the title of her EPQ seconds before submitting her documents. The most important thing to remember is that your title has to fit with your project; this stands hand-in-hand with the advice to choose a topic which interests you, which I am confident that I have done.
During lunch today, we also found out about a group trip to the library at Royal Holloway University, which will be a perfect opportunity to finalise my research and write in a quite, unfamiliar environment which will hopefully stimulate my creativity.