NQF Levels in South Africa Education

  • joubeditor
  • Sep 10, 2021

When you are applying for a job in South Africa, you must be familiar with the terms of NQF level as the standard criterion. Different positions require different standard that all applicants must possess. However, do you know exactly each of NQF levels in South Africa education and what are the differences?

NQF Levels in South Africa Education
NQF Levels in South Africa Education on PropAcademy

South African Qualifications Authority

The South African Qualifications Authority (SAQA) is a statutory body which is regulated in the National Qualifications Framework Act No 67 of 2008. SAQA itself exists in order to oversee the implementation and development of National Qualifications Framework (NQF).

Further, this NQF is used to arrange the levels of learning achievements. Therefore, all South Africans who are going to apply for a job need to specify which NQF level they have earned. This level will be used to measure the acquired skills and whether or not you are capable for these specific positions and abilities.

Generally, there are 10 NQF levels in South Africa education. It sets not only boundaries but also guidelines and principles based on an organizational structure for the qualifications system construction. In other words, these will be the education and training standard in South Africa.

Qualifications in NQF Levels

As it was previously mentioned, there are 10 NQF levels which have different qualification for each level. Specifically, these are the 10 different levels in SAQA when it comes to applying for a job.

  • NQF level 1
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In this level, the qualification that all applicants must be Grade 9 qualifications. It means that this qualification is acquired by the learners who have just graduated from Junior High School.

  • NQF level 2

Next, the NQF level 2 requires those who are in Grade 10 and National or vocational Certificates level 2. Those who are in high school and have National Certificates level 2 will be able to get the title of NQF level 2.

  • NQF level 3

In NQF level 3, students in Grade 11 and National or vocational Certificate level 3 get this qualification.

  • NQF level 4

Those who have their Grade 12 qualifications and National or vocational Certificates level 4 will get this NQF level 4 qualification.

  • NQF level 5

Having higher certificates and advanced National or vocational certificate is eligible for this NQF level 5.

  • NQF level 6

Generally, this qualification will be eligible for those who have National Diploma and Advanced certificates in any field of study.

  • NQF level 7

Furthermore, those who have Bachelor’s degree, Advanced Diploma, B-tech, and Post Graduate Certificate will get the qualification of NQF level 7.

  • NQF level 8

In addition, having Honours degree, Post Graduate Diploma, and Professional qualifications will be eligible for this NQF level 8.

  • NQF level 9

Those who have earned their Master’s Degree will get their qualifications as NQF level 9.

  • NQF level 10

Lastly, this qualification will be for those who have Doctor’s degree in any major of study. This is the highest qualification exists when looking for a job.

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Overall, having different NQF level from 1 to 10 is totally fine. For some people, having higher education level is an obligation thing to do. However, it is acceptable for some companies who are looking for employees in NQF level 1 to 5. Therefore, you can still look for a job and apply for it based on your specifications.