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qualifications

Assessment Policy for Qualifications and Part Qualifications on the Occupational Qualifications Sub-Framework (OQSF)

1.      Preamble

The Quality Council for Trades and Occupations (QCTO) was established in 2010 in terms of section 26G of the Skills Development Act, of 1998 as a juristic person. It was listed as a public entity in Government Gazette No 33900 of 31 December 2010 effective from 1 April 2010 to establish the Sub-framework for Trades and Occupations. It is responsible for the development, maintenance and quality assurance of qualifications within its sub-framework.

External integrated summative assessment is an integral and critical component of the QCTO’s quality assurance system. External integrated summative assessment ensures consistency and credibility of the assessment of occupational qualifications, trades and part qualifications. The external integrated summative assessment will be conducted by the relevant AQP, applying nationally standardised assessment instruments.

For learners to qualify for an external integrated summative assessment, they must provide proof of  completion  of  all  required  modules.  Foundational  Learning Competence  (FLC)  is  a  pre- requisite for the external integrated summative assessment of all occupational qualifications and part qualifications at NQF levels 3 and 4.

2.      Objectives and criteria for assessment

The objectives and criteria for External Integrated Summative Assessment are to:

·     outline how the external integrated summative assessment will be conducted, by whom how and where i.e. the model to be used

·     outline   the  requirements   for  the  external  integrated  summative  assessment  for occupational qualifications, trades and part qualifications   and    guide all assessment

practices;

·     ensure  that  all  assessment  practices  are  aligned  to  legislation  and  national  policy environment;

·     ensure that  assessment is  understood as  an  integrated  process  within  the  learning experience; and

·     outline the most appropriate way for the AQP to carry out its functions for the given context.

3.      Legislative and regulatory framework

In terms of the Skills Development Act, 1998 (Act 97 of 1998), the QCTO must design and develop occupational qualifications and standards and ensure the quality assurance thereof. A nationally  standardised  external  summative  assessment  is  an  integral  part  of  the  quality assurance of occupational qualifications, trades and part qualifications.

This policy should be read in conjunction with the QCTO Policy on Delegation of Qualification

Assessment to Assessment Quality Partners (AQPs).

4.      Audience and applicability

This policy applies to AQPs responsible for developing standardised assessment instruments in accordance with the external assessment specifications document and accredited assessment centres responsible for conducting external summative assessments. The policy is applicable to the assessment of occupational qualifications and part qualifications registered on the NQF.

5.      Rationale for a flexible approach

The assessment strategy will vary according to a number of factors.  Since the qualifications in the Occupational Qualifications Framework cover a variety of occupational contexts, levels of complexity, percentage of knowledge, practical skills and work experience as well as NQF levels, there can be no one model for external assessment which will suit all occupational qualifications. Part of the design process for each qualification focuses on determining the most efficient, effective, practical and economic way to conduct valid external assessment in the context of that particular qualification and this information is outlined in the Qualification Assessment Specifications document.

6.      Underlying principles and values

The following principles and values must be taken into consideration during the development of the processes.

External Assessment systems and processes must:

6.1 be fair, reliable, valid, ethical and transparent

6.2 be consistent across time, place, role players and respond to a non-sectoral demand led model

6.3 use  methodologies  that  are  fit-for-purpose  and  reflect  a  consistent  level  of  higher cognitive challenge

6.4 avoid tendencies of exclusivity

7.      Qualification Assessment Specifications

The QCTO has introduced a compulsory external assessment as a prerequisite for certification for all occupational qualifications. The purpose of this is to establish and maintain a national standard for each occupational qualification. By ensuring the validity and reliability of the external summative assessment based on a national standard the QCTO aims to enhance the credibility of the certificates issued to qualifying learners for occupational qualifications.

Internal assessment is conducted by providers in line with the guidelines given in the curriculum for each curriculum component. Workplaces offering the work experience are provided with a work experience record which must be completed and signed off, as well as specifications regarding supporting evidence to be collected. The learner achievements resulting from internal assessment are recorded in statements of results. Candidates become eligible for external assessment when they have all the statements of results as specified in the assessment specifications.

Because  the  external  assessment  strategy  needs  to  be  fit  for  purpose,  a  Qualification Assessment Specifications document spelling out the requirements for external assessment is developed for each occupational qualification.  Assessment instruments will be developed in accordance with the assessment strategy for each occupational qualification. The actual assessment is thus standardised nationally for all candidates for any single occupational qualification.

When an organisation is appointed as an Assessment Quality Partner by the QCTO for a specified occupational qualification, its first task is to participate in the development of the Qualification Assessment Specifications for the qualification in question. The Qualification Assessment Specifications are developed during the qualification development process and it is expected that a minimum of 50% of the working group members should be experts in that particular occupational qualification.

8.      Criteria for the development of the external assessment specifications document

8.1    The external assessment strategy must be included.

8.2    Key occupational outcomes must be described.

8.3    The  point(s)  at  which  the  occupational  qualification  is  to  be  assessed  must  be indicated.

8.4    Critical identified elements of ‘external assessment’ to be externally moderated (if any)

must be indicated.

8.5    Eligibility requirements for candidates for external assessment must be specified.

8.6    Exemplars of external assessment instruments must be included.

8.7    The language(s) of assessment must be included.

8.8    Minimum requirements (qualifications/experience) for the assessment specialists must be specified.

9.      Criteria for the development of external assessment instruments

9.1    The guidelines on the content to be assessed should ensure consistency and quality across time, place, role players and occupations.

9.2    Assessment instruments should be developed to ensure the validity, consistency, quality and credibility of the assessments.

9.3    Assessment  instruments  should  be  based  on  the  outcomes  of  the  occupational qualification or part qualification and assessment criteria stated in the assessment

specifications document.

9.4    Assessment instruments should be developed by subject matter experts in a particular occupational qualification or part qualification.

10.    Assessment techniques

A  range  of  assessment  techniques  to  ensure  that  assessment  is  educationally  sound, appropriate to the discipline or field of study, all outcomes are assessed and the criteria of validity, reliability, authenticity and feasibility are met will be spelled out in the curriculum component of the occupational qualification, trade or part qualification.

11.    Responsibilities for the implementation of the external integrated summative assessment policy

11.1. Roles and responsibilities of the QCTO

The QCTO must

11.1.1. Appoint an AQP for each occupational qualification or part qualification.

11.1.2. Publish  assessment  specifications  document,  developed  as  part  of  the qualifications development process.

11.1.3. Monitor and evaluate AQPs performance in managing the external integrated summative assessments and where necessary undertake audits to determine the quality performance of AQPs.

11.1.4. Ensure that national standards are met through monitoring and evaluation of the

execution of functions by the AQP.

11.1.5. Evaluate the assessment and moderation processes.

11.1.6. Maintain a database of accredited SDPs and assessment centres/sites.

11.1.7. Monitor adherence to the QCTOs Code of Conduct for AQPs.

11.2. Roles and responsibilities of the AQP

The AQP will:

11.2.1. Ensure   that   it   receives   learner   enrolment   data   from   accredited   Skills

Development Providers (SDPs) on time for planning purposes.

11.2.2. Liaise   with  the  accredited   assessment  centres  and  approved  sites  on assessment instruments to be administered for a particular session.

11.2.3. Ensure that complete assessment instruments and related documentation are forwarded to the accredited assessment centres and approved sites in a secure

manner agreed upon.

11.2.4. Keep a record of assessment specialists that assess and moderate the external assessments involving practical tasks which are conducted at decentralised

assessment centres that simulate working conditions or approved workplace sites.

11.2.5. Ensure that learner results are credible and that the assessment process was fair, valid, reliable and unbiased.

11.3. Roles and responsibilities of assessment centres

Accredited assessment centres are addressed in a separate policy as they must meet a number of criteria. The accredited assessment centres and their approved sites will ensure that:

11.3.1. Assessment   instruments   should   be   developed   to   ensure   the   validity, consistency, quality and credibility of the assessments.

11.3.2. There   are   sufficient   invigilators   during   assessments   and   they   receive appropriate training.

11.3.3. There are no fraudulent activities during the assessment.

11.3.4. The  safe  storage  of  assessment  instruments  and  related  documentation  is adhered to.

11.3.5. Assessment results are delivered to the relevant AQP within the stipulated time and in a manner agreed upon.

11.3.6. Assessment materials are marked and results are captured accordingly.

11.4. Roles    and     responsibilities     of     systems     auditors,    invigilators     and administrators

These  key  role-players  need  not  necessarily  be  subject  matter  experts  or  expert practitioners since they focus on compliance. They check:

11.4.1.That all relevant assessment policies and procedures are implemented correctly

11.4.2.The secure handling of the assessment instruments and

11.4.3.The procedures for checking the identity of candidates and

11.4.4.The authenticity of the assessment processes.

11.5. Roles and responsibilities of the skills development providers

The skills development providers will:

11.5.1. Conduct internal assessment in line with the guidelines given in the curriculum for each curriculum component.

11.5.2. Record  the  learner  achievements  resulting  from  internal  assessment  in statements of results.

11.5.3. Enrol  candidates  with  assessment  centres  when  they  become  eligible  for external assessment.

11.5.4. Coordinate the provision and assessment of the knowledge and practical skills

curriculum   components   of   an   occupational   qualification   based   on   the recommendations from the AQP.

11.5.5. Liaise with workplaces to assist candidates to have access to work experience.

11.6. Roles and responsibilities of the learners

The learners must:

11.6.1. Take   responsibility   for   their   learning   and   assessment   by   being   active participants;

11.6.2. Participate in assessment processes in an honest and disciplined manner;

11.6.3. Monitor their learning  towards  readiness  to conduct an  external  summative assessment and inform the provider when ready for external assessment;

11.6.4. Know the appeals procedure of the AQP so that they can follow it should there

be a need to do so.

12.    Complaints and Appeals

12.1.    Complaints about the assessment and assessment process by learners should be lodged at the accredited assessment centre or approved site.

12.2.    Appeals on the assessment and assessment process by learners should be lodged with the relevant AQP, in which the decision of the AQP appeals committee shall be final.

13.    Coordination of Component Provision

The QCTO will ensure, for occupational qualifications, that a single agent is responsible to assist learners to navigate through all three learning components and have access to the external summative assessment.

 

14.    Quality assurance and monitoring of policy implementation

14.1.    The effectiveness of the policy on the external integrated summative assessment shall be monitored and reviewed on a regular basis against the set quality assurance standards and associated performance indicators to identify and implement appropriate amendments aimed at improving the effectiveness, efficiency, economy and impact of the said policy and procedures.

14.2.    Best practices in the occupational space for policy implementation will be identified and best practice models will be used to benchmark the practice amongst AQPs.

14.3.    On appointment the Assessment Quality Partner signs a Service Level Agreement with the QCTO. This provides a schedule for implementation of the QCTO model for external assessment, giving deadlines for each requirement during the first year of

appointment. This schedule provides the basis for the QCTO to monitor, evaluate

and review the initial activities of the AQP.

14.4.   In addition, the QCTO has a standardised data reporting template which must be completed and submitted annually. This provides specified quantitative data to the QCTO.

14.5.    Each year after the first year of appointment the AQP must also complete and submit

a qualitative report, which serves the dual purpose of a self-evaluation, assisting in strategic planning for the coming year, and of providing the QCTO with the basis for continued monitoring, evaluation and review.

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Assessment Policy for Qualifications and Part Qualifications on the Occupational Qualifications Sub-Framework (OQSF)

1.      Preamble

The Quality Council for Trades and Occupations (QCTO) was established in 2010 in terms of section 26G of the Skills Development Act, of 1998 as a juristic person. It was listed as a public entity in Government Gazette No 33900 of 31 December 2010 effective from 1 April 2010 to establish the Sub-framework for Trades and Occupations. It is responsible for the development, maintenance and quality assurance of qualifications within its sub-framework.

External integrated summative assessment is an integral and critical component of the QCTO’s quality assurance system. External integrated summative assessment ensures consistency and credibility of the assessment of occupational qualifications, trades and part qualifications. The external integrated summative assessment will be conducted by the relevant AQP, applying nationally standardised assessment instruments.

For learners to qualify for an external integrated summative assessment, they must provide proof of  completion  of  all  required  modules.  Foundational  Learning Competence  (FLC)  is  a  pre- requisite for the external integrated summative assessment of all occupational qualifications and part qualifications at NQF levels 3 and 4.

2.      Objectives and criteria for assessment

The objectives and criteria for External Integrated Summative Assessment are to:

·     outline how the external integrated summative assessment will be conducted, by whom how and where i.e. the model to be used

·     outline   the  requirements   for  the  external  integrated  summative  assessment  for occupational qualifications, trades and part qualifications   and    guide all assessment

practices;

·     ensure  that  all  assessment  practices  are  aligned  to  legislation  and  national  policy environment;

·     ensure that  assessment is  understood as  an  integrated  process  within  the  learning experience; and

·     outline the most appropriate way for the AQP to carry out its functions for the given context.

3.      Legislative and regulatory framework

In terms of the Skills Development Act, 1998 (Act 97 of 1998), the QCTO must design and develop occupational qualifications and standards and ensure the quality assurance thereof. A nationally  standardised  external  summative  assessment  is  an  integral  part  of  the  quality assurance of occupational qualifications, trades and part qualifications.

This policy should be read in conjunction with the QCTO Policy on Delegation of Qualification

Assessment to Assessment Quality Partners (AQPs).

4.      Audience and applicability

This policy applies to AQPs responsible for developing standardised assessment instruments in accordance with the external assessment specifications document and accredited assessment centres responsible for conducting external summative assessments. The policy is applicable to the assessment of occupational qualifications and part qualifications registered on the NQF.

5.      Rationale for a flexible approach

The assessment strategy will vary according to a number of factors.  Since the qualifications in the Occupational Qualifications Framework cover a variety of occupational contexts, levels of complexity, percentage of knowledge, practical skills and work experience as well as NQF levels, there can be no one model for external assessment which will suit all occupational qualifications. Part of the design process for each qualification focuses on determining the most efficient, effective, practical and economic way to conduct valid external assessment in the context of that particular qualification and this information is outlined in the Qualification Assessment Specifications document.

6.      Underlying principles and values

The following principles and values must be taken into consideration during the development of the processes.

External Assessment systems and processes must:

6.1 be fair, reliable, valid, ethical and transparent

6.2 be consistent across time, place, role players and respond to a non-sectoral demand led model

6.3 use  methodologies  that  are  fit-for-purpose  and  reflect  a  consistent  level  of  higher cognitive challenge

6.4 avoid tendencies of exclusivity

7.      Qualification Assessment Specifications

The QCTO has introduced a compulsory external assessment as a prerequisite for certification for all occupational qualifications. The purpose of this is to establish and maintain a national standard for each occupational qualification. By ensuring the validity and reliability of the external summative assessment based on a national standard the QCTO aims to enhance the credibility of the certificates issued to qualifying learners for occupational qualifications.

Internal assessment is conducted by providers in line with the guidelines given in the curriculum for each curriculum component. Workplaces offering the work experience are provided with a work experience record which must be completed and signed off, as well as specifications regarding supporting evidence to be collected. The learner achievements resulting from internal assessment are recorded in statements of results. Candidates become eligible for external assessment when they have all the statements of results as specified in the assessment specifications.

Because  the  external  assessment  strategy  needs  to  be  fit  for  purpose,  a  Qualification Assessment Specifications document spelling out the requirements for external assessment is developed for each occupational qualification.  Assessment instruments will be developed in accordance with the assessment strategy for each occupational qualification. The actual assessment is thus standardised nationally for all candidates for any single occupational qualification.

When an organisation is appointed as an Assessment Quality Partner by the QCTO for a specified occupational qualification, its first task is to participate in the development of the Qualification Assessment Specifications for the qualification in question. The Qualification Assessment Specifications are developed during the qualification development process and it is expected that a minimum of 50% of the working group members should be experts in that particular occupational qualification.

8.      Criteria for the development of the external assessment specifications document

8.1    The external assessment strategy must be included.

8.2    Key occupational outcomes must be described.

8.3    The  point(s)  at  which  the  occupational  qualification  is  to  be  assessed  must  be indicated.

8.4    Critical identified elements of ‘external assessment’ to be externally moderated (if any)

must be indicated.

8.5    Eligibility requirements for candidates for external assessment must be specified.

8.6    Exemplars of external assessment instruments must be included.

8.7    The language(s) of assessment must be included.

8.8    Minimum requirements (qualifications/experience) for the assessment specialists must be specified.

9.      Criteria for the development of external assessment instruments

9.1    The guidelines on the content to be assessed should ensure consistency and quality across time, place, role players and occupations.

9.2    Assessment instruments should be developed to ensure the validity, consistency, quality and credibility of the assessments.

9.3    Assessment  instruments  should  be  based  on  the  outcomes  of  the  occupational qualification or part qualification and assessment criteria stated in the assessment

specifications document.

9.4    Assessment instruments should be developed by subject matter experts in a particular occupational qualification or part qualification.

10.    Assessment techniques

A  range  of  assessment  techniques  to  ensure  that  assessment  is  educationally  sound, appropriate to the discipline or field of study, all outcomes are assessed and the criteria of validity, reliability, authenticity and feasibility are met will be spelled out in the curriculum component of the occupational qualification, trade or part qualification.

11.    Responsibilities for the implementation of the external integrated summative assessment policy

11.1. Roles and responsibilities of the QCTO

The QCTO must

11.1.1. Appoint an AQP for each occupational qualification or part qualification.

11.1.2. Publish  assessment  specifications  document,  developed  as  part  of  the qualifications development process.

11.1.3. Monitor and evaluate AQPs performance in managing the external integrated summative assessments and where necessary undertake audits to determine the quality performance of AQPs.

11.1.4. Ensure that national standards are met through monitoring and evaluation of the

execution of functions by the AQP.

11.1.5. Evaluate the assessment and moderation processes.

11.1.6. Maintain a database of accredited SDPs and assessment centres/sites.

11.1.7. Monitor adherence to the QCTOs Code of Conduct for AQPs.

11.2. Roles and responsibilities of the AQP

The AQP will:

11.2.1. Ensure   that   it   receives   learner   enrolment   data   from   accredited   Skills

Development Providers (SDPs) on time for planning purposes.

11.2.2. Liaise   with  the  accredited   assessment  centres  and  approved  sites  on assessment instruments to be administered for a particular session.

11.2.3. Ensure that complete assessment instruments and related documentation are forwarded to the accredited assessment centres and approved sites in a secure

manner agreed upon.

11.2.4. Keep a record of assessment specialists that assess and moderate the external assessments involving practical tasks which are conducted at decentralised

assessment centres that simulate working conditions or approved workplace sites.

11.2.5. Ensure that learner results are credible and that the assessment process was fair, valid, reliable and unbiased.

11.3. Roles and responsibilities of assessment centres

Accredited assessment centres are addressed in a separate policy as they must meet a number of criteria. The accredited assessment centres and their approved sites will ensure that:

11.3.1. Assessment   instruments   should   be   developed   to   ensure   the   validity, consistency, quality and credibility of the assessments.

11.3.2. There   are   sufficient   invigilators   during   assessments   and   they   receive appropriate training.

11.3.3. There are no fraudulent activities during the assessment.

11.3.4. The  safe  storage  of  assessment  instruments  and  related  documentation  is adhered to.

11.3.5. Assessment results are delivered to the relevant AQP within the stipulated time and in a manner agreed upon.

11.3.6. Assessment materials are marked and results are captured accordingly.

11.4. Roles    and     responsibilities     of     systems     auditors,    invigilators     and administrators

These  key  role-players  need  not  necessarily  be  subject  matter  experts  or  expert practitioners since they focus on compliance. They check:

11.4.1.That all relevant assessment policies and procedures are implemented correctly

11.4.2.The secure handling of the assessment instruments and

11.4.3.The procedures for checking the identity of candidates and

11.4.4.The authenticity of the assessment processes.

11.5. Roles and responsibilities of the skills development providers

The skills development providers will:

11.5.1. Conduct internal assessment in line with the guidelines given in the curriculum for each curriculum component.

11.5.2. Record  the  learner  achievements  resulting  from  internal  assessment  in statements of results.

11.5.3. Enrol  candidates  with  assessment  centres  when  they  become  eligible  for external assessment.

11.5.4. Coordinate the provision and assessment of the knowledge and practical skills

curriculum   components   of   an   occupational   qualification   based   on   the recommendations from the AQP.

11.5.5. Liaise with workplaces to assist candidates to have access to work experience.

11.6. Roles and responsibilities of the learners

The learners must:

11.6.1. Take   responsibility   for   their   learning   and   assessment   by   being   active participants;

11.6.2. Participate in assessment processes in an honest and disciplined manner;

11.6.3. Monitor their learning  towards  readiness  to conduct an  external  summative assessment and inform the provider when ready for external assessment;

11.6.4. Know the appeals procedure of the AQP so that they can follow it should there

be a need to do so.

12.    Complaints and Appeals

12.1.    Complaints about the assessment and assessment process by learners should be lodged at the accredited assessment centre or approved site.

12.2.    Appeals on the assessment and assessment process by learners should be lodged with the relevant AQP, in which the decision of the AQP appeals committee shall be final.

13.    Coordination of Component Provision

The QCTO will ensure, for occupational qualifications, that a single agent is responsible to assist learners to navigate through all three learning components and have access to the external summative assessment.

 

14.    Quality assurance and monitoring of policy implementation

14.1.    The effectiveness of the policy on the external integrated summative assessment shall be monitored and reviewed on a regular basis against the set quality assurance standards and associated performance indicators to identify and implement appropriate amendments aimed at improving the effectiveness, efficiency, economy and impact of the said policy and procedures.

14.2.    Best practices in the occupational space for policy implementation will be identified and best practice models will be used to benchmark the practice amongst AQPs.

14.3.    On appointment the Assessment Quality Partner signs a Service Level Agreement with the QCTO. This provides a schedule for implementation of the QCTO model for external assessment, giving deadlines for each requirement during the first year of

appointment. This schedule provides the basis for the QCTO to monitor, evaluate

and review the initial activities of the AQP.

14.4.   In addition, the QCTO has a standardised data reporting template which must be completed and submitted annually. This provides specified quantitative data to the QCTO.

14.5.    Each year after the first year of appointment the AQP must also complete and submit

a qualitative report, which serves the dual purpose of a self-evaluation, assisting in strategic planning for the coming year, and of providing the QCTO with the basis for continued monitoring, evaluation and review.

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QCTO Qualifications

Occupational Qualifications Development

The development of occupational standards and qualifications is one of the QCTO’s main priorities in supporting learning for the workplace.

In accordance with the bill of rights, every citizen has the right to choose their trade, occupation or profession freely. The QCTO’s role is to ensure that there are occupational qualifications that respond to skills development priorities of the country.

The QCTO manages the Occupational Qualifications Sub-Framework (OQSF), which is one of the three integrated sub-frameworks of the National Qualifications Framework. SAQA registers occupational qualifications on the OQSF as recommended by the QCTO.

The availability of registered occupational qualifications facilitates skills development that supports labour market needs and developmental state initiatives.

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Assessment Policy for Qualifications and Part Qualifications on the Occupational Qualifications Sub-Framework (OQSF)

1.      Preamble

The Quality Council for Trades and Occupations (QCTO) was established in 2010 in terms of section 26G of the Skills Development Act, of 1998 as a juristic person. It was listed as a public entity in Government Gazette No 33900 of 31 December 2010 effective from 1 April 2010 to establish the Sub-framework for Trades and Occupations. It is responsible for the development, maintenance and quality assurance of qualifications within its sub-framework.

External integrated summative assessment is an integral and critical component of the QCTO’s quality assurance system. External integrated summative assessment ensures consistency and credibility of the assessment of occupational qualifications, trades and part qualifications. The external integrated summative assessment will be conducted by the relevant AQP, applying nationally standardised assessment instruments.

For learners to qualify for an external integrated summative assessment, they must provide proof of  completion  of  all  required  modules.  Foundational  Learning Competence  (FLC)  is  a  pre- requisite for the external integrated summative assessment of all occupational qualifications and part qualifications at NQF levels 3 and 4.

2.      Objectives and criteria for assessment

The objectives and criteria for External Integrated Summative Assessment are to:

·     outline how the external integrated summative assessment will be conducted, by whom how and where i.e. the model to be used

·     outline   the  requirements   for  the  external  integrated  summative  assessment  for occupational qualifications, trades and part qualifications   and    guide all assessment

practices;

·     ensure  that  all  assessment  practices  are  aligned  to  legislation  and  national  policy environment;

·     ensure that  assessment is  understood as  an  integrated  process  within  the  learning experience; and

·     outline the most appropriate way for the AQP to carry out its functions for the given context.

3.      Legislative and regulatory framework

In terms of the Skills Development Act, 1998 (Act 97 of 1998), the QCTO must design and develop occupational qualifications and standards and ensure the quality assurance thereof. A nationally  standardised  external  summative  assessment  is  an  integral  part  of  the  quality assurance of occupational qualifications, trades and part qualifications.

This policy should be read in conjunction with the QCTO Policy on Delegation of Qualification

Assessment to Assessment Quality Partners (AQPs).

4.      Audience and applicability

This policy applies to AQPs responsible for developing standardised assessment instruments in accordance with the external assessment specifications document and accredited assessment centres responsible for conducting external summative assessments. The policy is applicable to the assessment of occupational qualifications and part qualifications registered on the NQF.

5.      Rationale for a flexible approach

The assessment strategy will vary according to a number of factors.  Since the qualifications in the Occupational Qualifications Framework cover a variety of occupational contexts, levels of complexity, percentage of knowledge, practical skills and work experience as well as NQF levels, there can be no one model for external assessment which will suit all occupational qualifications. Part of the design process for each qualification focuses on determining the most efficient, effective, practical and economic way to conduct valid external assessment in the context of that particular qualification and this information is outlined in the Qualification Assessment Specifications document.

6.      Underlying principles and values

The following principles and values must be taken into consideration during the development of the processes.

External Assessment systems and processes must:

6.1 be fair, reliable, valid, ethical and transparent

6.2 be consistent across time, place, role players and respond to a non-sectoral demand led model

6.3 use  methodologies  that  are  fit-for-purpose  and  reflect  a  consistent  level  of  higher cognitive challenge

6.4 avoid tendencies of exclusivity

7.      Qualification Assessment Specifications

The QCTO has introduced a compulsory external assessment as a prerequisite for certification for all occupational qualifications. The purpose of this is to establish and maintain a national standard for each occupational qualification. By ensuring the validity and reliability of the external summative assessment based on a national standard the QCTO aims to enhance the credibility of the certificates issued to qualifying learners for occupational qualifications.

Internal assessment is conducted by providers in line with the guidelines given in the curriculum for each curriculum component. Workplaces offering the work experience are provided with a work experience record which must be completed and signed off, as well as specifications regarding supporting evidence to be collected. The learner achievements resulting from internal assessment are recorded in statements of results. Candidates become eligible for external assessment when they have all the statements of results as specified in the assessment specifications.

Because  the  external  assessment  strategy  needs  to  be  fit  for  purpose,  a  Qualification Assessment Specifications document spelling out the requirements for external assessment is developed for each occupational qualification.  Assessment instruments will be developed in accordance with the assessment strategy for each occupational qualification. The actual assessment is thus standardised nationally for all candidates for any single occupational qualification.

When an organisation is appointed as an Assessment Quality Partner by the QCTO for a specified occupational qualification, its first task is to participate in the development of the Qualification Assessment Specifications for the qualification in question. The Qualification Assessment Specifications are developed during the qualification development process and it is expected that a minimum of 50% of the working group members should be experts in that particular occupational qualification.

8.      Criteria for the development of the external assessment specifications document

8.1    The external assessment strategy must be included.

8.2    Key occupational outcomes must be described.

8.3    The  point(s)  at  which  the  occupational  qualification  is  to  be  assessed  must  be indicated.

8.4    Critical identified elements of ‘external assessment’ to be externally moderated (if any)

must be indicated.

8.5    Eligibility requirements for candidates for external assessment must be specified.

8.6    Exemplars of external assessment instruments must be included.

8.7    The language(s) of assessment must be included.

8.8    Minimum requirements (qualifications/experience) for the assessment specialists must be specified.

9.      Criteria for the development of external assessment instruments

9.1    The guidelines on the content to be assessed should ensure consistency and quality across time, place, role players and occupations.

9.2    Assessment instruments should be developed to ensure the validity, consistency, quality and credibility of the assessments.

9.3    Assessment  instruments  should  be  based  on  the  outcomes  of  the  occupational qualification or part qualification and assessment criteria stated in the assessment

specifications document.

9.4    Assessment instruments should be developed by subject matter experts in a particular occupational qualification or part qualification.

10.    Assessment techniques

A  range  of  assessment  techniques  to  ensure  that  assessment  is  educationally  sound, appropriate to the discipline or field of study, all outcomes are assessed and the criteria of validity, reliability, authenticity and feasibility are met will be spelled out in the curriculum component of the occupational qualification, trade or part qualification.

11.    Responsibilities for the implementation of the external integrated summative assessment policy

11.1. Roles and responsibilities of the QCTO

The QCTO must

11.1.1. Appoint an AQP for each occupational qualification or part qualification.

11.1.2. Publish  assessment  specifications  document,  developed  as  part  of  the qualifications development process.

11.1.3. Monitor and evaluate AQPs performance in managing the external integrated summative assessments and where necessary undertake audits to determine the quality performance of AQPs.

11.1.4. Ensure that national standards are met through monitoring and evaluation of the

execution of functions by the AQP.

11.1.5. Evaluate the assessment and moderation processes.

11.1.6. Maintain a database of accredited SDPs and assessment centres/sites.

11.1.7. Monitor adherence to the QCTOs Code of Conduct for AQPs.

11.2. Roles and responsibilities of the AQP

The AQP will:

11.2.1. Ensure   that   it   receives   learner   enrolment   data   from   accredited   Skills

Development Providers (SDPs) on time for planning purposes.

11.2.2. Liaise   with  the  accredited   assessment  centres  and  approved  sites  on assessment instruments to be administered for a particular session.

11.2.3. Ensure that complete assessment instruments and related documentation are forwarded to the accredited assessment centres and approved sites in a secure

manner agreed upon.

11.2.4. Keep a record of assessment specialists that assess and moderate the external assessments involving practical tasks which are conducted at decentralised

assessment centres that simulate working conditions or approved workplace sites.

11.2.5. Ensure that learner results are credible and that the assessment process was fair, valid, reliable and unbiased.

11.3. Roles and responsibilities of assessment centres

Accredited assessment centres are addressed in a separate policy as they must meet a number of criteria. The accredited assessment centres and their approved sites will ensure that:

11.3.1. Assessment   instruments   should   be   developed   to   ensure   the   validity, consistency, quality and credibility of the assessments.

11.3.2. There   are   sufficient   invigilators   during   assessments   and   they   receive appropriate training.

11.3.3. There are no fraudulent activities during the assessment.

11.3.4. The  safe  storage  of  assessment  instruments  and  related  documentation  is adhered to.

11.3.5. Assessment results are delivered to the relevant AQP within the stipulated time and in a manner agreed upon.

11.3.6. Assessment materials are marked and results are captured accordingly.

11.4. Roles    and     responsibilities     of     systems     auditors,    invigilators     and administrators

These  key  role-players  need  not  necessarily  be  subject  matter  experts  or  expert practitioners since they focus on compliance. They check:

11.4.1.That all relevant assessment policies and procedures are implemented correctly

11.4.2.The secure handling of the assessment instruments and

11.4.3.The procedures for checking the identity of candidates and

11.4.4.The authenticity of the assessment processes.

11.5. Roles and responsibilities of the skills development providers

The skills development providers will:

11.5.1. Conduct internal assessment in line with the guidelines given in the curriculum for each curriculum component.

11.5.2. Record  the  learner  achievements  resulting  from  internal  assessment  in statements of results.

11.5.3. Enrol  candidates  with  assessment  centres  when  they  become  eligible  for external assessment.

11.5.4. Coordinate the provision and assessment of the knowledge and practical skills

curriculum   components   of   an   occupational   qualification   based   on   the recommendations from the AQP.

11.5.5. Liaise with workplaces to assist candidates to have access to work experience.

11.6. Roles and responsibilities of the learners

The learners must:

11.6.1. Take   responsibility   for   their   learning   and   assessment   by   being   active participants;

11.6.2. Participate in assessment processes in an honest and disciplined manner;

11.6.3. Monitor their learning  towards  readiness  to conduct an  external  summative assessment and inform the provider when ready for external assessment;

11.6.4. Know the appeals procedure of the AQP so that they can follow it should there

be a need to do so.

12.    Complaints and Appeals

12.1.    Complaints about the assessment and assessment process by learners should be lodged at the accredited assessment centre or approved site.

12.2.    Appeals on the assessment and assessment process by learners should be lodged with the relevant AQP, in which the decision of the AQP appeals committee shall be final.

13.    Coordination of Component Provision

The QCTO will ensure, for occupational qualifications, that a single agent is responsible to assist learners to navigate through all three learning components and have access to the external summative assessment.

 

14.    Quality assurance and monitoring of policy implementation

14.1.    The effectiveness of the policy on the external integrated summative assessment shall be monitored and reviewed on a regular basis against the set quality assurance standards and associated performance indicators to identify and implement appropriate amendments aimed at improving the effectiveness, efficiency, economy and impact of the said policy and procedures.

14.2.    Best practices in the occupational space for policy implementation will be identified and best practice models will be used to benchmark the practice amongst AQPs.

14.3.    On appointment the Assessment Quality Partner signs a Service Level Agreement with the QCTO. This provides a schedule for implementation of the QCTO model for external assessment, giving deadlines for each requirement during the first year of

appointment. This schedule provides the basis for the QCTO to monitor, evaluate

and review the initial activities of the AQP.

14.4.   In addition, the QCTO has a standardised data reporting template which must be completed and submitted annually. This provides specified quantitative data to the QCTO.

14.5.    Each year after the first year of appointment the AQP must also complete and submit

a qualitative report, which serves the dual purpose of a self-evaluation, assisting in strategic planning for the coming year, and of providing the QCTO with the basis for continued monitoring, evaluation and review.

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DRAFT NATIONAL POLICY ON THE MISREPRESENTATION OF QUALIFICATIONS

OBJECTIVES of the DRAFT NATIONAL POLICY ON THE MISREPRESENTATION OF QUALIFICATIONS

PURPOSE

  1. The purpose of this Policy is to:
  •  Define what is meant by misrepresented qualifications;
  •  Provide  a framework  for dealing  with individuals  and providers  who misrepresent qualifications; and
  • Define the roles and responsibilities of the different role-players.

The Policy includes:

  • Definitions of terminology used in the context of this Policy;
  •  The  legislative   environment  pertaining  to  the  Policy  and  a  description  of  the legislative amendments required to enable the Policy to be implemented;
  •  The different categories and types of actions by individuals and providers that can be construed as qualification misrepresentation;
  •  The requirements for inclusion on the Register of Misrepresented Qualifications and
  • Providers operating outside of the South African NQF (RMQP), of individuals found to have misrepresented their qualifications or obtained their qualifications from a degree mill;

The requirements for inclusion on the RMQP, of providers operating outside of the South African NQF;

The requirements for inclusion on the Register of Fraudulent Qualffications, of the names and details of individuals and providers found guilty of qualifications fraud by a court of law;

Description of the processes to be followed when a qualification is suspected of

having been misrepresented:

  • The process  applied  to  confirm  cases  of  misrepresentation   and  to  deal  with confirmed cases of misrepresentation;
  • The process to deal with foreign qualifications where the definition/ understanding of fraud/ misrepresentation in the foreign country is different to that of South Africa and where the nature of the foreign institution differs from those in South Africa;
  • The process to handle qualifications that have been issued by fcreign institutions that

no longer exist; and

  • Measures to deal with exceptions and exclusions.
  • The respective roles and responsibilities of the different bodies involved;
  • The mechanism(s) available to individuals and providers who have been identified as having misrepresented qualifications, to respond to the claim before their names are added to the RMQP, and
  •  The appeals  process  available to individuals  and providers  whose  details already
  • appear on the RMQP.

SCOPE

 This Policy covers:

  • All cases of qualification misrepresentation by individuals living in, who have studied in or who want to live/ work/ study in South Africa; and
  • Providers who operate in South Africa and have flouted the legislation/ regulations that pertain to registration, accreditation, the issuing of certificates and/or marketing of qualification offerings.

It should be noted that SAQA reserves the right to decide on which foreign qualifications and foreign institutions to recognise. SAQA is guided by the Policy and Criteria for the Recognition of Fcreign Qualifications in the South African NQF and bilateral recognition agreements that the South African government has signed with foreign nations, but is under no obligation to recognise any foreign qualification cr provider.

OBJECTIVES

The objectives of this Policy are to:

  • Establish the Register of Misrepresented Qualifications and Providers Operating outside of the South African NQF (RMQP);
  • Define the responsibilities of NQF partners who suspect/confirm that a qualification has been misrepresented;
  • Indicate the rules governing the inclusion on and removal from the RMQP;
  • Outline the responsibilities of private qualification verification agencies and the private sector when confronted with a misrepresented qualification;
  • Outline the proposed role and responsibilities of the South African Police Services (SAPS) in investigating cases of misrepresentation and providing feedback on progress with investigations;
  • Outline the proposed role and responsibilities of the Department of Justice (DOJ) in prosecuting cases of misrepresented qualifications and providing information about individuals and providers convicted of fraud relating to qualifications; and
  • Outline SAQA’s co-ordinating role in dealing with misrepresented and fraudulent qualifications.

UNDERLYING PRINCIPLES

The following principles underpin this Policy:

  • A person and/or provider are confirmed to have misrepresented qualifications or a provider has operated outside of the South African NQF if supporting evidence can show this to be true.  The person’s name and details, or details about the provider with the relevant timeframes of non-compliance (if applicable) are published in the RMQP.
  • A person and/or provider are guilty of qualification fraud only when convicted by a
  • court of law.  Details about the person and/or provider are entered into the Register of Fraudulent Qualifications with details of the court sentencing and relevant timeframes.
  •  Where qualifications are submitted for verification either by individuals or by
  • prospective employees, the qualification holder must be informed of the process and give written consent to have his/her name included in the RMQP if he/she has misrepresented his/her qualifications, or where the provider, through which the qualification was obtained, is found to be a degree mill.
  • Innocent parties may not be unnecessarily punished because of the unscrupulous
  • actions of other parties.
  • All parties involved in the investigation of possible qualification misrepresentation

must be informed of:

  • The pending investigation,
  • Possible action in the case of a confirmed finding,
  • Their right to make representation to the proceedings, and
  • Their right to appeal the findings of the investigation. (vi) Both registers will be made public by SAQA.

MISREPRESENTED QUALIFICATIONS

A qualifications/part-qualification has been misrepresented if:

  • It does nct meet the criteria to be an authentic qualification;
  • The certificate of award was not issued by the provider;
  • An individual alters the certificate of award or the SAQA Certification of
  • Evaluation for a qualification; and
  • An individual offers for any reason, a qualification that was obtained from a degree mill.

A provider has misrepresented a qualification/part-qualification if the provider:

  • Fails to inform the learners that (a) the qualification/part qualification is not registered on the NQF or (b) the provider is not accredited by the relevant Quality Council to offer the qualification/part-qualification; or
  • Misleads the public in the marketing of a qualification/part-qualification.

RESPONSIBILITIES OF NQF PARTNERS AND THE GENERAL PUBLIC WITH RESPECT TO MISREPRESENTED QUALIFICATIONS

  • The NQF Act and related legislation, by implication, requires SAQA and the NQF partners to uphold the integrity of, and act against threats to, the NQF. It is incumbent upon SAQA and the Quality Councils to take action against providers and individuals who misrepresent qualifications.  Such actions will also act as a deterrent to those considering misrepresenting their qualifications.
  • It is imperative that all applications submitted for the verification of qualifications must contain a statement signed by the qualification hdder indicating that s/he understands that, should her/his qualification(s) be found to be misrepresented or from a degree mill, then her/his name will be included in the RMQP.

THE QUALITY COUNCILS (QCs)

The QCs must:

Investigate all suspected cases of qualification misrepresentation related to qualifications on their respective sub-frameworks and providers accredited by them;

 

Inform all relevant  parties of:

  • The intention of the QC to further investigate possible qualification misrepresentation;
  • Their right to make submissions to the QC;
  • The outcome  of the investigation; and
  • Their right to appeal the decisions.
  1. Appoint a committee to consider  the evidence  surrounding an alleged case and make a decision for consideration by the QC CEO;
  2. Keep a list of all cases of suspected qualification misrepresentation related to their qualifications sub-framework and accredited providers;
  3. Develop the knowledge and skills of staff to be able to identify and investigate misrepresented qualifications;
  4. Confirm cases of misrepresentation related to qualifications on their respective sub­ frameworks or by providers accredited by them;
  5. Report cases of misrepresentation to the South African Police Services (SAPS) for further investigation and possible prosecution;
  6. Recommend to the DHET to withdraw  the provider registration where appropriate; and
  7. Report all cases of misrepresentation every two months to SAQA in accordance with
  8. SAQA’s reporting schedule. The report must include: All information on the matter;
  9. Where  a decision has been reached, whether or not a charge was laid with the SAPS;
  10. A recommendation for the inclusion of the name of the individual/provider in the RMQP; and
  11. Any other action that should be taken.

SETAS AND ASSESSMENT QUALITY PARTNERS (AQPs) SETAs and AQPs must:

  • Inform the OCTO of any suspected cases of qualification misrepresentation involving qualifications that they quality assure or providers they have accredited on behalf of the OCTO, within 5 working days of them becoming aware of them; and
  • Render the necessary assistance to the OCTO in the latter’s investigation of the cases.

SOUTH AFRICAN QUALIFICATIONS AUTHORITY (SAQA) SAQA must:

  • Investigate and confirm cases of misrepresentation that are reported directly to it or by the DHET and decide on the course of action to be taken;
  • Confirm the findings of qualification misrepresentation reported by private verification
  • agencies by adhering to the process outlined in 10.1 for QCs above;
  • Establish an Appeals Committee to consider appeals against the decision to add the name of an individual or provider to the RMQP,
  • Compile and communicate the schedule for reporting cases of qualification misrepresentation and circulate it to QCs, private qualification verification bodies and the DHET;
  • Co-ordinate the actions of all involved in this process;
  • Act as a sounding board to the QCs on challenging cases;
  • Manage the process of appeals lodged by individuals I providers whose names appear in the RMQP,
  • Maintain the RMQP by entering and removing information as required;
  • Provide the Minister bi-monthly, with an updated RMQP,
  • Receive information from the Department of Justice, about individuals and providers who have been convicted of qualifications fraud;
  • Maintain the Register of Fraudulent Qualifications by entering and removing names of offenders as per the court rulings; and
  • Provide the updated Register of Fraudulent Qualifications to the Minister bi-monthly.

PROCEDURES FOR THE IMPLEMENTING  BY QUALITY COUNCILS (QCs)

The procedure for QCs to deal with alleged cases of qualification misrepresentation is as follows:

(i)        Details of the case of suspected qualifications misrepresentation is entered in the

relevant QC’s List of Misrepresented Qualifications;

(ii)        The CEO will appoint a staff member to investigate the case;

(iii)        The CEO (or his/her designate) will inform the qualification holder and applicant that an investigation of qualification misrepresentation is being conducted, giving the details of the alleged offence and requesting further information from the individual and/or provider to assist in the investigation;

(iv)        The case is investigated and the information from the qualification holder/applicant

/provider is considered;

(v)       A report with supporting documents is submitted to the CEO for consideration; (vi)              The CEO makes a decision on the matter. The decision could be that:

  • The individual is innocent and the investigation is closed;
  • There is insufficient evidence for a finding of misrepresentation so the investigation is closed;
  • The individual is an innocent victim of circumstances beyond his/her control and the

investigation is closed;

  • The individual is an innocent victim of unscrupulous provision by a provider and therefore is not guilty of misrepresentation, but the provider is. The provider’s name is recommended to SAQA for addition to the RMQP,
  • The individual obtained his/her qualification from a degree mill and is therefore

guilty of misrepresentation and his/her name is recommended to SAQA for inclusion in the RMQP, or

  • The individual and/or provider is guilty of misrepresentation and their names are

recommended to SAQA for inclusion in the RMQP.

(vii)        The CEO informs the relevant individual/provider of the outcome of the investigation and, where applicable, of the recommendation that their names be added to the RMQP,

(viii)        The individuals/providers are made aware that they may appeal to SAQA against the

outcome and are directed to the Appeals Process that should be followed; (ix)             Details of the misrepresentation are submitted to SAQA ;

(x)        Supporting documents are filed for possible future reference and sent to SAQA in cases where appeals have been lodged with SAQA;

(xi)       Individuals/providers who were found to have misrepresented qualifications must be reported by the CEO to the SAPS for further investigation and possible prosecution; and

(xii)       A recommendation is made to DHET to withdraw registration of the provider if

appropriate.

SAQA

SAQA is involved in the process in the following ways:

  •  Investigating alleged cases of misrepresented qualifications that are reported directly to it or which it becomes aware of;
  • Recording the cases of misrepresented qualifications reported to it by the QCs and
  • other departments and agencies;
  • Considering appeals lodged by individuals/providers whose names appear on the
  • RMQP, and
  • Maintaining the RMQP as well as the Register of Fraudulent Qualifications and reporting regularly on its contents to the Minister: HET.

Investigating cases of alleged qualification misrepresentation

This process is the same as that followed by the QCs.

Managing incidents of misrepresented qualifications reported to it by the QCs

  • When SAQA receives its bi-monthly report from the QCs:
  • Details of the individual/provider will be entered into the RMQP, and
  • A report is generated for the Minister: HET for publication in the Government
  • Gazette.

Hearing appeals

The appeals process is as follows:

(i)      An appeal against the decision must be submitted to the SAQA CEO in writing within

60 days of the date on the letter sent by the relevant CEO of the QC informing them

of the decision. The appeal should contain the necessary support documentation. (ii)            SAQA has an existing Appeals Committee.  The CEO of the relevant QC will be

invited to provide additional information for appeals involving investigations conducted by that QC, where necessary.

(iii)       Acknowledgement of receipt of the appeal must be made to the appellant within 48 hoors of receipt.

(iv)       The Appeals Committee must meet within 30 days of receipt of the appeal.

(v)       The Appeals Committee may request the appellant or anyone else deemed necessary to make representation either in writing or in person to the Committee.

(vi)       The decision of the Appeals Committee must be communicated in writing to the

appellant within 3 days of the decision being taken. The appellant must also be infcrmed that a final appeal may be made to the Minister: HET whose decision will be final.

(vii)        Should an appeal be lodged with the Minister: HET, the decision of the Minister: HET

must be conveyed to SAQAwho will implement the decision.

Maintaining the Register of Misrepresented Qualifications and  providers operating outside of the NQF (RMQP) and  reporting to the Minister: HE.T

  1. The names of individuals/providers who have misrepresented qualifications are entered into the RMQP.
  2. The Register is updated bi-monthly as information is received from QCs.
  3. The Register of Fraudulent Qualifications is updated as information is received from SAPS
  4. with respect to cases finalised and sentences handed down in a court of law.
  5. Both Registers are provided to the Minister bi-monthly and published on SAQA:s website.

 

Originally posted 2017-01-14 20:33:42. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

South Africa’s new tax laws and National Qualifications Framework deductions 2017

New amendments to the Taxation Laws Amendment Bill, introduced changes on tax deductions available to businesses. 2017

With regard to a person without disability, the value of the deduction is increased from R30,000 to R40,000 for qualifications from NQF (National Qualifications Framework) level 1 to NQF level 6 and decreased from R30,000 to R20,000 for qualifications from NQF level 7 to NQF level 10.

With regard to person with disability, the value of the deduction is increased from R500,000 to R600,000 for qualifications from NQF level 1 to NQF level 6 and remains at R50,000 for qualifications from NQF level 7 to NQF level 10.

A cap of R20 million was also introduced on the claim allowed to each employer.

How can I get a verification of my Qualifications?

You can verify your educational Qualifications on the National Learners` Records Database (NLRD) at the South African Qualifications Authority (SAQA).

If you are an employer, you can also confirm the Qualifications of your employees on the database. If you check your own information, you receive the full record of what the NLRD holds concerning you. When other parties verify your information as a learner, they must give an exact query (which Qualification, Institution and date). SAQA`s response is either “found” or “not found” concerning that information only.

Information currently available on the NLRD
University achievements from 1986 to 2008 in full
Partial information from 1965 to 1985
A small amount of information from 1964 back to 1900.

Information from 2009 and 2010 is currently being loaded, and can be verified against the unaudited dataset that is held separately from the NLRD itself.

Technikon achievements from 1999 to 2005
Senior Certificate achievements from 1992 to 2010.
Achievements submitted by Education and Training Quality Assurance bodies (ETQAs).

What is the National Qualifications Framework (NQF)

The National Qualification Framework (NQF) is the document that has been implemented to bring training and education together into a single national system. The NQF has made it easier for learners to obtain a form of a qualification by means of attending either formal or informal training or by means of recognition of prior learning (RPL) and through experience.
It was brought about to:

    *Allow learners to enter the education and training system that previously were unable to.
    *Improve the quality of education and training in South Africa.
    *Open up learning and work opportunities for those who were treated unfairly in the past because of their race, disability or gender.
    *Enable learners to develop their full potential.