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SAQA revises Level Descriptors for National Qualifications Framework

SAQA has published revised Level Descriptors for the NQF in Government Gazette No. 35548 (27 July 2012). The purpose of the Descriptors is to ensure consistency in learning achievements in the allocation of qualifications to particular levels, and to facilitate assessment of the national and international comparability of qualifications and part qualifications.

The Descriptors are informed by levels of applied competence – in line with the outcomes-based theoretical framework adopted in the South African context. The Descriptors are to be used in different contexts and settings, including vocational, occupational, academic and professional contexts, and in the classroom, laboratory, field, clinic, community, etc. The interpretation of the level descriptors in each context will vary, and separate guidelines will be developed to aid in the interpretive process.

The descriptors cover NQF levels one to ten. For example, in the case of NQF level one, learners’ scope of knowledge requires a learner to be able to demonstrate a general knowledge of one or more areas or fields of study, in addition to the fundamental fields of study. In the case of Knowledge Literacy, learners must be able to demonstrate an understanding that knowledge in a particular field develops over a period of time through the efforts of a number of people and often through the synthesis of information from a variety of sources. Further levels are provided in relation to Method and Procedure; Problem-solving; Ethics and Professional Practice; Accessing, Processing and Managing Information; Producing and Communicating Information; Context and Systems; Management of Learning; and Accountability.


Click here to view the full set of descriptors for all levels.