Outlined below is a summary of some of the more salient aspects of the proposed changes to the occupational qualifications framework. These proposals were put forward in July of 2008 and public comment was called for by 31st of October 2008.
It should be remembered these are proposals at this stage. The summary has been extracted from the draft policy document and nothing, to the best of my knowledge, has been finalised.
Whatever the outcome the result will have implications for internal and/or external Assessors, Moderators, Providers and course developers.
Purpose of the OQF
The purpose of the Occupational Qualifications Framework (OQF), which will be an integral part of the NQF, will specifically address the needs of the labour market.
It will provide for the certification of
Occupational qualifications define the learning component required for occupational competence and each unit standard identifies
The NQF provides for the establishment of three Quality Councils each of which is responsible for the streamlining of standards and quality assurance. The three councils will be
The Occupational Quality Councils will be responsible for all NQF levels dependant on the level at which a specific qualification is registered by SAQA.
Levels on the NQF
It is proposed there will be 10 levels on the NQF commencing with NQF level one which is equivalent to Grade 9 and going up to level 10 which is equivalent to a Doctoral Degree.
General and Further Education Band
GFETQF and OQF
Higher Education Qualifications Council
Occupational qualifications will be registered at a particular level of the NQF based on
· NQF level descriptors
· The skills level of the occupation as described in the “Organising Framework for Occupations” (OQF)
· International practice
Competence in occupational learning will be demonstrated against the three learning components
The OQF will exclude qualifications registered on other qualifications frameworks and/or which lead to professional designations and are subject to specific legislation.
The scope of occupational learning will be as follows
Potentially there will be two types of occupational qualifications
National Occupational Awards will certify achievements in terms of competence related to a specific occupation e.g. Ships master – specialisation “Harbour Pilot”
National skills certificate will certify a distinct occupationally related set of skills e.g. National skills certificate Manage loan portfolios level 4.
The three learning components will account for approximately 20 credits and will require external assessment by a constituent assessor.
Fundamental learning and competence (numeracy and literacy) will be required for levels 2 to 4. Assessment requirements will be outlined in the curriculum component and may be completed prior to or may be integrated into the start of the occupational learning. The requirement of competence will have to be met before certification of the learner.
The minister will develop criteria for registration of qualifications and SAQA will register all occupational qualifications which conform to the NQF.