SAQA All qualifications and part qualifications registered on the National Qualifications Framework are public property. Thus the only payment that can be made for them is for service and reproduction. It is illegal to sell this material for profit. If the material is reproduced or quoted, the South African Qualifications Authority (SAQA) should be acknowledged as the source.
SOUTH AFRICAN QUALIFICATIONS AUTHORITY 
REGISTERED QUALIFICATION: 

National Diploma: Interpreting 
SAQA QUAL ID QUALIFICATION TITLE
49062  National Diploma: Interpreting 
ORIGINATOR
SGB Translation, Interpreting and Language Editing 
PRIMARY OR DELEGATED QUALITY ASSURANCE FUNCTIONARY NQF SUB-FRAMEWORK
CHE - Council on Higher Education  HEQSF - Higher Education Qualifications Sub-framework 
QUALIFICATION TYPE FIELD SUBFIELD
National Diploma  Field 04 - Communication Studies and Language  Communication Studies 
ABET BAND MINIMUM CREDITS PRE-2009 NQF LEVEL NQF LEVEL QUAL CLASS
Undefined  260  Level 7  Level N/A: Pre-2009 was L7  Regular-Unit Stds Based 
REGISTRATION STATUS SAQA DECISION NUMBER REGISTRATION START DATE REGISTRATION END DATE
Reregistered  SAQA 06120/18  2018-07-01  2021-06-30 
LAST DATE FOR ENROLMENT LAST DATE FOR ACHIEVEMENT
2022-06-30   2026-06-30  

In all of the tables in this document, both the pre-2009 NQF Level and the NQF Level is shown. In the text (purpose statements, qualification rules, etc), any references to NQF Levels are to the pre-2009 levels unless specifically stated otherwise.  

This qualification does not replace any other qualification and is not replaced by any other qualification. 

PURPOSE AND RATIONALE OF THE QUALIFICATION 
The purpose of this qualification is to enable learners to render interpreting services professionally and ethically. The impact of errors when interpreting between (two) languages for specialised readership can have serious negative consequences, and attention to detail is essential. The status of interpreting in the South African economy and earning ability of qualifying learners can be improved. Qualifications that promote this are in accordance with the NQF philosophy of facilitating social upliftment whilst simultaneously meeting societal needs through lifelong learning

Qualifying learners are capable of:
  • Interpreting messages within a specific context using standardised language
  • Selecting correct technical terminology showing responsibility to others - Range: terminology includes both target text and source message
  • Solving interpreting problems
  • Collecting, analysing, organising and critically evaluating field-specific technical information in relation to the field
  • Working within the context of a group of role players to interpret information into the target message
  • Identifying and contextualising messages taking into account relationships between source language and target message systems - Range: system can include culture, norms, genre conventions, political systems, etc
  • Decoding source messages using background information and consultation with sources
  • Producing target message taking into account relationships between source language and target language systems


    Rationale

    A National Diploma in Interpreting (NQF Level 7) is required because there is a need for improved competence and recognition for competence in the area of interpreting. The qualification is intended to build on general interpreting competence, and allows progression to areas of competence at NQF Level 8.

    The range of typical learners for this qualification is those with a wide general knowledge, as well as linguistic and cultural maturity. The range of occupations that qualifying learners will fulfil includes:
  • Legal interpreters (including high court)
  • Business interpreters
  • Diplomatic service interpreters
  • Health interpreters - mental health
  • Conference interpreters
  • Educational interpreters
  • Parliamentary/Legislature/Local Government Council interpreters

    The current jobholders of many of the occupations listed above currently receive no interpreting training (for example, psychiatric nurses, health and mental health interpreters, conference interpreting - both general and specialised)

    The range of the qualification:
  • Register includes technical such as political, economic, scientific, medical, legal and diplomatic.
  • Interpreting in long consecutive mode
  • Interpreting in the simultaneous mode with equipment (spontaneous, or prepared read)
  • Interpreting in the simultaneous mode with equipment with text (sight interpreting)
  • Complex (long) consecutive interpreting and simultaneous interpreting
  • General and specialised conference interpreting
  • Linguistically parallel audiences
  • Booth, or whispered interpreting
  • May include commercial transacting

    Broad competencies that are included in this qualification are:
  • Maximise information recovery
  • Minimise recovery interference
  • Maximise communication impact
  • Law of least effort and self protection should be avoided 

  • LEARNING ASSUMED TO BE IN PLACE AND RECOGNITION OF PRIOR LEARNING 
    It is assumed that learners have the competencies National Diploma in Liaison Interpreting (NQF Level 5) or a generic first degree in languages. It is also assumed that learners have general world knowledge, and domain knowledge attained as part of a first degree. Learners are also expected to be proficient in at least two languages at NQF Level 5, and in implementing project administration processes according to requirements (NLRD ID Nr 10139) at NQF Level 4.


    Recognition of prior learning (RPL)

    This qualification can be achieved wholly, or in part, through recognition of prior learning. Evidence can be presented in a variety of forms, including previous international or local qualifications, reports, testimonials, mentoring, functions performed, portfolios, work records and performance records. As such, evidence should be judged according to the general principles of assessment described in the notes to assessors below. Learners who have met the requirements of any Unit Standard that forms part of this qualification may apply for recognition of prior learning to the relevant Education and Training Quality Assurance body (ETQA). The applicant must be assessed against the specific outcomes and with the assessment criteria for the relevant Unit Standards. A qualification will be awarded should a learner demonstrate that the exit level outcomes of the qualification have been attained. 

    RECOGNISE PREVIOUS LEARNING? 

    QUALIFICATION RULES 
  • All the Fundamental Component Unit Standards are compulsory (53 credits).
  • All the Core Component Unit Standards are compulsory (165 credits).
  • For the Elective Component learners are required to attain 42 credits out of 62 credits. 

  • EXIT LEVEL OUTCOMES 
    Fundamental Outcomes

    1. Interpret messages within a specific context using standardised language.
    2. Select correct technical terminology showing responsibility to others. Range: terminology includes both target text and source message.
    3. Solve interpreting problems.
    4. Collect, analyse, organise and critically evaluate field-specific information.
    5. Work within the context of a group of role players to interpret information into the target message. Role players include, clients, partners, etc.
    6. Identify and contextualise messages taking into account relationships between source language and target message systems - Range: system can include culture, norms, genre conventions, political systems, etc.
    7. Contribute to interpreting research in a specific field.
    8. Decode source message using background information and consultation with sources.
    9. Produce target message taking into account relationships between source language and target language systems. Range: system can include culture, norms, genre conventions, political systems, etc.

    Elective Outomes (42 Credits are required to qualify)

    10. Communicate effectively using language skills in the mode of written presentation in a third language.
    11. Interpret in an additional specialised field or sub-field.
    12. Manage HR in the delivery of interpreting products.
    13. Manage delivery of interpreting products. 

    ASSOCIATED ASSESSMENT CRITERIA 
    Fundamental

    1.
  • Listening is active and verified to be aligned with source message.
  • Decoding of message is accurate.
  • Analysis of source message is done systematically.
  • Linguistic structures of target language are accurately adhered to.

    2.
  • Linguistic structures are accurately analysed.
  • Terminology is appropriately prepared.
  • Where relevant background information is prepared in advance to ensure correct terminology is used.
  • Target message is adapted to after comparison with source message.

    3.
  • Technical problems are solved efficiently.
  • Stress in managed to optimise interpreting delivery.
  • Terms are negotiated for interpreting assignments which are fair.
  • Communication breakdowns are managed in a way that enhances interpreting effectiveness and efficiency.

    4.
  • Background information is collected which is relevant to the context.
  • Background information is collated in a way that allows for efficient and effective retrieval.
  • New information is incorporated with existing information in a way that allows for efficient and effective retrieval.
  • Existing knowledge schemas are compared with current knowledge schemas to assess validity of both.

    5.
  • Terms of interpreting assignments are negotiated which are fair to both parties.
  • Partner's performance is monitored and assessed to benefit the interpreting assignment.
  • Partner is debriefed and adaptations are suggested which are relevant to the brief.
  • Feedback is provided on process errors which is relevant to context and in line with the brief.

    6.
  • Content of source message is analysed systematically.
  • Message is reproduced accurately, completely, coherently and cohesively.
  • Content of source is accurately contextualised.
  • Linguistic structures of analysed systematically.
  • Message is converted to linguistic structure of target language.

    7.
  • Plan research using sound research principles.
  • Perform appropriate literature reviews.
  • Conduct data gathering and analysis with is congruent with the research methodology.
  • Disseminate research results responsibly.

    8.
  • Texts containing sophisticated and complex vocabulary are accurately decoded.
  • Texts containing sophisticated and complex syntactic structures are accurately decoded.
  • Texts of varying linguistic complexity are accurately decoded.
  • Texts written to be read are accurately decoded.
  • Texts written to be spoken are accurately decoded.

    9.
  • Target text speed is accurate in terms of presenter delivery speed.
  • Target language is accurate in terms of source language.
  • Target language is appropriate for norms of target culture.
  • Speaking/signing is clear for specific audiences.
  • Speaking/signing is correct in terms of agreed maxims of communication.


    Elective

    10.
  • Text types, text features and text functions are correctly identified, selected and verified in relation to parallel texts.
  • Texts designed are based on context-specific requirements.
  • The writing process is planned effectively.
  • Errors in text are accurately identified and analysed.
  • Feedback regarding text is obtained and provided.
  • Linguistic or textual features are accurately assessed.
  • Text assessment findings are justified.
  • Strategies selected to improve and transform text are context-appropriate and justified.
  • Comparison of own composition with similar text types is relevant.
  • Text quality is improved where relevant.
  • Adaptations of text for different readerships is appropriate for specific readership profiles.
  • The conceptual level of text is adjusted to correct readership level.

    11
  • Specialised text is written correctly within a specific field.
  • Technical information is contextualised in terms of the field.
  • Decoding of technical information of source text is relevant for the brief, field, context, scope and readers.

    12.
  • Employees are recruited, selected and contracted in line with legal requirements.
  • Employment contracts are complied within the framework of relevant legislation.
  • Recruitment and selection of required human resources is conducted ethically.
  • Grievance and disciplinary hearings are appropriately dealt with.
  • All related legislation is complied with.

    13.
  • Systems are implemented to meet the flow of information.
  • Investigation of marketing communications concepts is appropriate for purpose of communication.
  • Cost budgets are accurately prepared and estimated.
  • All actual costs are monitored and controlled against budgets.
  • Project schedules are communicated to all relevant persons.
  • Monitoring and evaluating of project schedules is against agreed criteria and meets project objectives.


    Integrated assessment

    The assessment criteria in the unit standards are performance-based, assessing applied competence rather than only knowledge, or skills. In addition, learners must demonstrate that they can achieve the outcomes in an integrated manner, dealing effectively with different and random demands related to the environmental conditions in occupational contexts, to qualify. Evidence is required that the learner is able to achieve the exit level outcomes of the qualification as a whole and thus its purpose, at the time of the award of the qualification. Workplace experience can be recognised when assessing towards this qualification. 

  • INTERNATIONAL COMPARABILITY 
    Comparison with the following countries were made, as they are centres of excellence, or have multi-lingualism policies similar to that of South Africa: India, New Zealand, Australia, United Kingdom, Germany and the United States of America.

    Training for interpreters in India is aimed mainly at interpreting competence for seminars, trade shows, conferences and meetings. Competence includes consecutive and simultaneous interpreting, in specific technical and non-technical fields, taking into account non-linguistic factors such as political, religious or cultural sensitivities and gender, bilingualism, and cross-cultural knowledge, and is equivalent to the South African interpreting qualifications.

    The New Zealand National Qualifications Framework has ten levels of progression. The Translating and Interpreting Unit Standards (no qualification exists on the New Zealand framework) are registered at Levels 6 and 7. Level 6 is described as involving carrying out processes that require a command of wide-ranging highly specialised technical or scholastic skills, a wide choice of standard and non-standard procedures, often in non-standard combinations, in highly variable routine and non-routine contexts. This is the equivalent of the South African NQF Level 5 or 6. Thus, no qualification or unit standards equivalent to this NQF Level 7 qualification are available in New Zealand.

    In the United States of America, standards are set for practice rather than education and training, and differ depending on the context, for example, educational interpreting standards are distinguished from medical interpreting standards. Training of interpreters is primarily based on the ASTM International Standard Guide for Language Interpretation Services. American programs are shorter and at the level of this qualification (South African NQF Level 7) are considered part of continuing education for graduates.

    In Germany, degrees in interpreting (Diplom-DolmetscherIn) are offered, as well as doctoral and masters degrees (South African NQF Level 8). Competence for all qualifications includes linguistic competence, and content area of specialisation (e.g. information technology) knowledge. In the United Kingdom, occupational certificates are registered on the National and Scottish Vocational Qualifications framework, at their levels 3 and 4, which is below this diploma. At a level equivalent to this NQF Level 7 qualification, an MA in Interpreting and Translating is offered - this South African qualification does not include translation competence.

    Australia has two Interpreting qualifications, with the latter qualification comparable to this South African qualification:
  • Diploma of Interpreting and Translation
  • Advanced Diploma of Interpreting and Translating

    The Advanced Diploma recognises capacity for initiative and judgement across a broad range of technical and/or management functions. The Advanced Diploma is a more specialised qualification and signifies skill and knowledge of a greater complexity and a higher level of personal accountability than is required at the Diploma level. 

  • ARTICULATION OPTIONS 
    Vertical articulation upwards is possible with Masters level degrees. Vertical articulation downwards is possible with Bachelor degrees, and, for example, the National Certificate in Specialised Translation (NQF Level 6). Horizontal articulation on the NQF is possible with various Honours degrees, and with, for example, the National Diploma in Specialised Translation (NQF Level 7). 

    MODERATION OPTIONS 
    Moderation of assessment and accreditation of providers shall be at the discretion of a relevant ETQA as long as it complies with the SAQA requirements. The ETQA is responsible for moderation of learner achievements of learners who meet the requirements of this qualification. Particular moderation and accreditation requirements are:
  • Any institution offering learning that will enable the achievement of this qualification must be accredited as a provider with the relevant ETQA. Providers offering learning towards achievement of any of the unit standards that make up this qualification must also be accredited through the relevant ETQA accredited by SAQA.
  • The ETQA will oversee assessment and moderation of assessment according to their policies and guidelines for assessment and moderation, or in terms of agreements reached around assessment and moderation between the relevant ETQA and other ETQAs and in terms of the moderation guideline detailed here.
  • Moderation must include both internal and external moderation of assessments for the qualification, unless the relevant ETQA policies specify otherwise. Moderation should also encompass achievement of the competence described in Unit Standards as well as the integrated competence described in the qualification.
  • Internal moderation of assessment must take place at the point of assessment with external moderation provided by a relevant ETQA according to the moderation guidelines and the agreed ETQA procedures.
  • Anyone wishing to be assessed against this qualification may apply to be assessed by any assessment agency, assessor or provider institution that is accredited by the relevant ETQA. 

  • CRITERIA FOR THE REGISTRATION OF ASSESSORS 
    Assessment of learner achievements takes place at providers accredited by the relevant ETQA (RSA, 1998b) for the provision of programs that result in the outcomes specified for this qualification. Anyone assessing a learner or moderating the assessment of a learner against this qualification must be registered as an assessor with the ETQA. Assessors registered with the relevant ETQA must carry out the assessment of learners for the qualification and any of the Unit Standards that make up this qualification.

    To register as an assessor, the following are required:
  • Detailed documentary proof of relevant qualification/s, practical training completed, and experience gained at one level above this qualification
  • NQF recognised assessor credit


    Assessors should keep the following general principles in mind when designing and conducting assessments:
  • Focus the initial assessment activities on gathering evidence in terms of the main outcomes expressed in the titles of the Unit Standards to ensure assessment is integrated rather than fragmented. Remember that the learner needs to be declared competent in terms of the qualification purpose and exit level outcomes.
  • Where assessment across Unit Standard titles or at Unit Standard title level is unmanageable, then focus assessment around each specific outcome, or groups of specific outcomes. Take special note of the need for integrated assessment.
  • Make sure evidence is gathered across the entire range, wherever it applies.


    In particular, assessors should assess that the learner demonstrates an ability to consider a range of options by:
  • Measuring the quality of the observed practical performance as well as the theory and underpinning knowledge.
  • Using methods that are varied to allow the learner to display thinking and decision making in the demonstration of practical performance.
  • Maintaining a balance between practical performance and theoretical assessment methods to ensure each is measured in accordance with the level of the qualification.
  • Taking into account that the relationship between practical and theoretical components is not fixed, but aries according to the type and level of qualification.


    All assessments should be conducted in line with the following well-documented principles:
  • Appropriate: The method of assessment is suited to the performance being assessed.
  • Fair: The method of assessment does not present any barriers to achievements, which are not related to the evidence.
  • Manage: The methods used make for easily arranged cost-effective assessments that do not unduly interfere with learning.
  • Integrate into work or learning: Evidence collection is integrated into the work or learning process where this is appropriate and feasible.
  • Valid: The assessment focuses on the requirements laid down in the standards; i.e. the assessment is fit for purpose.
  • Direct: The activities in the assessment mirror the conditions of actual performance as close as possible.
  • Authentic: The assessor is satisfied that the work being assessed is attributable to the learner being assessed.
  • Sufficient: The evidence collected establishes that all criteria have been met and that performance to the required Standard can be repeated consistently.
  • Systematic: Planning and recording is sufficiently rigorous to ensure that assessment is fair.
  • Open: Learners can contribute to the planning and accumulation of evidence. Learners for assessment understand the assessment process and the criteria that apply.
  • Consistent: The same assessor would make the same judgement again in similar circumstances. The judgement made is similar than the judgement that would be made by other assessors. 

  • REREGISTRATION HISTORY 
    As per the SAQA Board decision/s at that time, this qualification was Reregistered in 2012; 2015. 

    NOTES 
    N/A 

    UNIT STANDARDS: 
      ID UNIT STANDARD TITLE PRE-2009 NQF LEVEL NQF LEVEL CREDITS
    Core  116807  Accommodate cultural reference systems  Level 7  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L7  15 
    Core  116796  Analyse linguistic structures  Level 7  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L7  15 
    Core  116794  Analyse source messages  Level 7  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L7  15 
    Core  116799  Assess interpreting process  Level 7  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L7  15 
    Core  116797  Categorise new and existing information into working memory  Level 7  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L7  15 
    Core  116795  Decode varying source texts  Level 7  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L7  15 
    Core  116800  Interpret simultaneously with text  Level 7  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L7  15 
    Core  116801  Manage interpreting situations  Level 7  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L7  15 
    Core  116803  Manage own interpreting performance  Level 7  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L7  15 
    Core  116805  Negotiate terms for interpreting assignments  Level 7  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L7  15 
    Core  116798  Produce target messages for interpreting  Level 7  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L7  15 
    Fundamental  116804  Collect and collate background information for specific contexts  Level 6  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L6  15 
    Fundamental  10301  Complete a research assignment  Level 6  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L6  20 
    Fundamental  116802  Recall messages for interpreting  Level 6  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L6 
    Fundamental  116806  Work in partnership with other interpreters  Level 6  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L6  10 
    Elective  8974  Engage in sustained oral communication and evaluate spoken texts  Level 4  NQF Level 04 
    Elective  8975  Read analyse and respond to a variety of texts  Level 4  NQF Level 04 
    Elective  8979  Use language and communication in occupational learning programmes  Level 4  NQF Level 04 
    Elective  8976  Write for a wide range of contexts  Level 4  NQF Level 04 
    Elective  11907  Draft an employment contract  Level 5  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L5 
    Elective  15225  Identify and interpret related legislation and its impact on the team, department or division and ensure compliance  Level 5  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L5 
    Elective  15226  Implement systems to meet the flow of information in a team, department or division  Level 5  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L5 
    Elective  10064  Investigate and explain marketing communications concepts  Level 5  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L5 
    Elective  12140  Recruit and select candidates to fill defined positions  Level 5  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L5 
    Elective  10985  Conduct a disciplinary hearing  Level 6  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L6 
    Elective  110483  Develop and manage an organisational records system  Level 6  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L6 
    Elective  12139  Facilitate the resolution of employee grievances  Level 6  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L6 


    LEARNING PROGRAMMES RECORDED AGAINST THIS QUALIFICATION: 
     
    NONE 


    PROVIDERS CURRENTLY ACCREDITED TO OFFER THIS QUALIFICATION: 
    This information shows the current accreditations (i.e. those not past their accreditation end dates), and is the most complete record available to SAQA as of today. Some Primary or Delegated Quality Assurance Functionaries have a lag in their recording systems for provider accreditation, in turn leading to a lag in notifying SAQA of all the providers that they have accredited to offer qualifications and unit standards, as well as any extensions to accreditation end dates. The relevant Primary or Delegated Quality Assurance Functionary should be notified if a record appears to be missing from here.
     
    NONE 



    All qualifications and part qualifications registered on the National Qualifications Framework are public property. Thus the only payment that can be made for them is for service and reproduction. It is illegal to sell this material for profit. If the material is reproduced or quoted, the South African Qualifications Authority (SAQA) should be acknowledged as the source.