For assessors: 1.4 The student described their plan for the project and why they chose that approach

For assessors: 1.4 The student described their plan for the project and why they chose that approach

Explanation:

This criterion is about stating the plan for the project at a high-level with students reflecting on and justifying their choices.

Award level
Criteria breakdown
Examples
Bronze
The student summarised the approach they will take and gave a simple justification for their choice.
I will start by completing research and then will undertake my practical investigation.

I have chosen this approach because it is the cheapest and quickest way of completing my project’s aim.

Once this is done, I will work on my analysis and conclusions and then think about the best way to communicate my ideas.

Silver
The student communicated their approach – identifying the key activities and milestones. They provided the reasoning for their chosen approach. 
We have decided to take the research-based approach, as we have limited access to facilities and equipment which we would need for the practical approaches. By doing a research project, we will be able to devote all our time to gathering data and producing our project, rather than having to learn new practical skills and experiment techniques, which would have to do for the practical approach.

Our approach will involve:
  1. Doing initial background research (each group member will take a separate topic)
  2. Presenting our findings to the group and decide which specific strand of research we want to pursue as a group
  3. Doing further research as a group on the specific topic
  4. Identifying the specific research questions that we want to answer and form hypotheses to test
  5. Collecting and analysing open-source data
  6. Drawing our conclusions and writing up our project. 

Gold
The student communicated a well-developed approach for their project, identifying the key activities and milestones. They provided the rationale for their choice and described their decision-making process.
To achieve our aim of, “identifying the most impactful way of raising awareness and perception of STEM careers in 9-11-year olds” we will take the following approach:
  1. Identify existing research on STEM career awareness and perceptions of 9-11-year-olds
  2. Do research and receive training on primary science teaching methods
  3. Identify our experiment’s hypotheses and design our experiment. This will include comparing delivery methods in schools e.g. embedding STEM careers info into lessons versus doing a stand-alone STEM careers lesson, and doing STEM careers events with youth community groups.
  4. Gather and process the data on awareness and perceptions of STEM careers which we collected in our experiment.
  5. Draw conclusions for our project, reflect on the project and how we did, and do our project write-up and presentation

Our rationale for this approach is that we will have a great opportunity to interact with and teach primary students as part of our school’s outreach programme. We want to make the most of this opportunity, including developing teaching skills and carrying out some research (benefitting us) as well as furthering younger students’ STEM and STEM career knowledge (benefitting the students).
Similarly, one of our group members already works with a youth community group, so this is a great opportunity to see whether the situation and context of the STEM careers information affects the level of awareness and perception.

We want to gather and process data so that we can use this data to answer our project aim, as well as sharing our data with our project mentor’s research group. Hopefully, they will be able to use our data in their research paper – increasing the impact of our work.

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