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SOUTH AFRICAN QUALIFICATIONS AUTHORITY 
REGISTERED QUALIFICATION: 

National Diploma: Copywriting 
SAQA QUAL ID QUALIFICATION TITLE
62610  National Diploma: Copywriting 
ORIGINATOR
SGB Marketing 
PRIMARY OR DELEGATED QUALITY ASSURANCE FUNCTIONARY NQF SUB-FRAMEWORK
The individual Primary or Delegated Quality Assurance Functionary for each Learning Programme recorded against this qualification is shown in the table at the end of this report.  SFAP - Sub-framework Assignment Pending 
QUALIFICATION TYPE FIELD SUBFIELD
National Diploma  Field 03 - Business, Commerce and Management Studies  Marketing 
ABET BAND MINIMUM CREDITS PRE-2009 NQF LEVEL NQF LEVEL QUAL CLASS
Undefined  240  Level 5  NQF Level 05  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 
Purpose:

Copywriting is a discipline and profession that serves the needs of many industries. In the context of the advertising and communication industry, this Qualification will enable creative, feasible, innovative and exciting individual and teamwork possibilities.

The purpose of this qualification is to build the necessary knowledge, understanding, abilities and skills required for further learning towards becoming a competent practicing copywriter. This Qualification will be registered at NQF Level 5. This Qualification is also related to other Qualifications such as the National Diploma in Marketing Communications Level 5 and the National Diploma in Marketing Level 5 where all of these Qualifications will ensure portability across all of these National Diplomas and other marketing Qualifications registered with SAQA.

This Qualification supports the objectives of the National Qualifications Framework (NQF) in that it provides learners with clear learning pathways, which provide access to, and mobility and progression within the marketing industry as a whole, and as such improvements increase their employment opportunities. The increased knowledge and skill base therefore has a wider implication, namely the enhancement of the functional and intellectual capability of the nation at large.

Rationale:

This National Diploma Qualification will provide the qualifying learner with the competencies needed to function in the broad copywriting industry. The National Diploma in Copywriting: Level 5 has been designed to meet the needs of those learners who enter the field of Copywriting. Copywriting activities within the entire marketing field are a key business function necessary for compliance with relevant legislative requirements. The Qualification is inextricably linked to the definition of Marketing. "Marketing is the process of planning and executing the conception, pricing, promotion and distribution of ideas, goods and services to create exchanges that satisfy individual and organisational objectives in an accountable and socially responsible manner". In doing that, Copywriting activities are an essential business requirement to guard against unlawful transgressions against and by the company. The Copywriting National Diploma at NQF Level 5 will provide a broad knowledge and skills needed in the industry to promote products and to progress along a career path for learners who:
  • Were previously disadvantaged or who were unable to complete their schooling and were therefore denied access to Further Education and Training.
  • Have worked in the advertising and communication industry for many years, but have no formal Qualification in Copywriting.
  • Wish to extend their range of skills and knowledge of the industry so that they can become knowledgeable workers in Copywriting.
  • Have recently taken up a position as a support staff member in a Copywriting section of organisation.

    The National Diploma in Copywriting, Level 5 allows the learner to work towards a nationally recognised Qualification that is flexible and will allow both those in formal education and those already employed in copywriting positions access. It aims to develop individuals who are informed and skilled in copywriting.

    The Qualification has building blocks that can be developed further and will lead to a more defined Visual Communications Qualification career path at NQF Level 6. It also focuses on the skills, knowledge, values and attitudes required to progress further.

    The intention is:
  • To promote the development of knowledge and skills that is required in all sub-sectors of marketing.
  • To reveal the potential of people.
  • To provide opportunities for people to move up the value chain.

    Many different roles are linked to and affected by this Qualification. They include but are not limited to:
  • Publishing.
  • Advertising.
  • Public Relations.
  • Corporate Image.
  • Promotions.
  • Competitions.
  • Events.
  • Exhibitions.
  • Slogans.

    The National Diploma in Copywriting: Level 5 will produce knowledgeable, skilled creative people who are able to contribute to improved productivity and efficiency within the marketing industry. It will provide the means for current individuals in the advertising, publishing and communication copywriting field to receive recognition of prior learning and to upgrade their skills and knowledge base. The Qualification is structured in a way that it exposes individuals to a set of core competence to give a broad understanding of marketing communication and the electives, which will allow for a specific competence in copywriting. It promotes the notion of life-long learning.

    The standard writing process was approached from a "whole" perspective. The process began off by identifying the 2 levels. The SGB then developed the framework and built the standards from there. The Qualifications are "zero based", representing best practice and standards that will lift the profession and support transformation. 

  • LEARNING ASSUMED TO BE IN PLACE AND RECOGNITION OF PRIOR LEARNING 
    It is assumed that learners wishing to enter a programme leading to this Qualification will have demonstrated competence against the "learning assumed to be in place" as contained in the unit standards for this Qualification.

    Recognition of Prior Learning:

    The structure of this Unit Standard based Qualification makes the Recognition of Prior Learning possible, if the learner is able to demonstrate competence in the knowledge, skills, values and attitudes implicit in this Qualification. Recognition of Prior Learning will be done by means of Integrated Assessment as mentioned in the previous paragraph.

    This Recognition of Prior Learning may allow:
  • For accelerated access to further learning.
  • Gaining of credits towards a qualification.

    All recognition of Prior Learning is subject to quality assurance by the relevant accredited Education and Training, Quality Assurance Body and is conducted by a registered assessor.

    Access to the Qualification:

    There is no access restrictions placed on this Qualification, however any learner who can provide evidence of the learning assumed to be in place, has open access to this Qualification. Because of the strong stakeholder participation in the development of this Qualification, during which all stakeholders' interests are represented, access is enhanced. Vertical articulation is possible where learners can gain access via the National Certificate in Copywriting Level 5. 

  • RECOGNISE PREVIOUS LEARNING? 

    QUALIFICATION RULES 
    The qualification is made up of a combination of learning outcomes from Fundamental, Core and Elective components, totalling 240 credits (minimum).

    Motivation for number of credits assigned to Fundamental, Core and Elective:
  • Fundamental:

    > There are 40 credits in the Fundamental unit standards.
    > All Fundamental unit standards are compulsory.
  • Core:

    > 172 credits have been allocated to the Core unit standards. This is to ensure that the qualification has a strong focus for copywriting.
    > The Core unit standards offer a broad contextual understanding and will enable the learners to gain an all round picture of the industry.
    > All Core unit standards are compulsory.
  • Electives:

    > Learners must select a minimum of 28 credits from the Elective Unit Standards to make up the 240 credits required.
    > There are a total of 54 credits for the Elective area. They also allow for progression to the next level of learning. 

  • EXIT LEVEL OUTCOMES 
    On achieving this qualification, the learner will be able to:

    1. Explain and implement workplace policies, procedures and processes.

    2. Demonstrate an ability to communicate and work as a member of a creative team.

    3. Identify, explain and handle target markets, product positioning and promotions.

    4. Explain, apply and present creative and lateral thinking writing skills and techniques.

    5. Explain and apply concepts of copy, copywriting and copywriter for print, electronic and out-of-home media.

    6. Explain and implement marketing communications principles and processes.

    7. Develop and evaluate campaign, media and creative strategies. 

    ASSOCIATED ASSESSMENT CRITERIA 
    On achieving this qualification, the learner will be able to:

    1:
  • HIV/AIDS policies are implemented in the workplace.
  • Professional values and ethics are described pertaining to the workplace.
  • Social issues are examined pertaining to the workplace.
  • Values and ethics for company are determined.
  • Values and ethics are applied throughout business activities.

    2:
  • Communication is clear and barriers to understanding are dealt with.
  • Team progress is reported on to authorised individuals.
  • Contribute to team decisions.
  • Conflict situations are identified and handled using collaborative facilitation methods.
  • Roles and responsibilities of team members are outlined and described.
  • Workplace data is communicated to all stakeholders in required timeframe and format.

    3:
  • Target markets are identified and explained for own industry.
  • Product positioning strategies are identified, explained and products are positioned within required market based on target market analysis findings.
  • Brief details are obtained and recorded and a brief is developed and submitted within required timeframes.
  • Brand, product and service promotion is implemented according to the brief.
  • The roles and functions of an advertising agency / design company are explained according to international standards.

    4:
  • Philosophies and creative writing processes are identified and various styles described.
  • Fundamentals, elements, techniques, characteristics, constraints and blocks are listed and described.
  • Conceptual and lateral thinking techniques are identified, analysed and applied.
  • Research practices to aid in lateral thinking are applied with examples.
  • The difference between metaphor, concept and message are explained according to international standards.
  • A creative presentation is developed in required timeframe, and in a user friendly format.
  • Portfolio presentation is clear and completed in required timeframe and customer satisfaction evaluated.

    5:
  • Concepts, terminology, history and fundamentals of copy and copywriting are identified and explained.
  • Copywriting styles, current trends and terminology are identified and explained and applied.
  • Skills, techniques and benefits of applying a professional approach are explained and implemented.
  • History and nature of copywriting is described.
  • Building blocks, elements and methods used in copywriting are explained and how these are implemented/applied by the copywriter.
  • Characteristics, constraints, strengths and limitations for various media are identified and explained.
  • Creative elements and philosophies are listed and strengths and weaknesses explained.
  • Copy concept is developed and written based on trends and brief using correct terminology, various styles and within required timeframe.
  • Copy is outlined for a variety of media (outdoor, television, radio, newspaper, magazines, editorials - below-the-line and internet).
  • Campaign for a single concept is developed and explained and submitted for approval.
  • Persuasive copy is conceptualised and written for categories using above-the-line-media, alternative media, below-the-line media and the internet.

    6:
  • Printing process is described and the requirements of internet and web design are described.
  • Production categories and processes are listed and explained.
  • Media plans and objectives are analysed and objectives listed.
  • Media type is analysed and evaluated against campaign objectives.
  • Marketing communications concepts is developed using: interpretation skills, evaluation of platform, art direction, design and pre testing techniques.
  • Concept is implemented following a plan, production schedule, quality assurance of key elements during production and inspection and approval of final product.

    7:
  • Marketing objectives and strategies are researched, developed and final media briefs prepared.
  • Marketing objectives and strategies are implemented according to budget.
  • Marketing communications campaign is monitored against outcomes and variances or out of line areas addressed.
  • Creative data is extracted for electronic and non-electronic mediums.
  • Solutions are developed and evaluated for effectiveness for each medium.
  • Preparation and presentation techniques are explained and applied for each medium.

    Integrated assessment:

    Learning, teaching and assessment are inextricably linked. Whenever possible, the assessment of knowledge, skills, attitudes and values shown in the Unit Standards should be integrated.

    Assessment of the communication, language, literacy and numeracy should be conducted in conjunction with other aspects and should use authentic Hiring contexts wherever possible.

    The term 'Integrated Assessment' implies that theoretical and practical components should be assessed together. During integrated assessments the assessor should make use of formative and summative assessment methods and assess combinations of practical, applied, foundational and reflective competencies.

    Assessors and moderators should make use of a range of formative and summative assessment methods. Assessors should assess and give credits for the evidence of learning that has already been acquired through formal, informal and non-formal learning and work experience.

    Assessment should ensure that all specific outcomes, embedded knowledge and Critical Cross-Field Outcomes are evaluated. The assessment of the Critical Cross-Field Outcomes should be integrated with the assessment of specific outcomes and embedded knowledge. 

  • INTERNATIONAL COMPARABILITY 
    The leaders in copywriting and advertising are generally recognised as the United Kingdom and the United States of America. Both of these countries were used as a comparison. Benchmarking was done by comparing this Qualification to unit standards, outcomes of learning, levels, credits and performance criteria found in the:
  • New Zealand Qualifications Authority:

    There are two Qualifications namely: a National Certificate in Marketing and a National Diploma in Marketing with 8 domains: Advertising, Direct Marketing, Generic Marketing, International Marketing, Marketing - Import and Export Services, Marketing Research, Public Relations, Sales Organisation and Management. The credits awarded here are 52 compulsory and 68 electives.
  • Australian Qualification Authority:

    No direct comparison could be made due to limited access to their Qualifications.
  • International Advertising Association (USA):

    Here there is a Diploma in Marketing Communication - IAA Standard Model with a minimum of 300 hours. The subjects included: Basic marketing, Consumer behaviour, Communication theory, Marketing/Advertising Research, Principles of Advertising/Promotion, Advertising/Promotion: Strategy and Management (Cases) Creative Fundamentals - Copy, layout and Production, Media Fundamentals - Planning and Buying, Advertising and Society - Social, Economic and Regulatory, International marketing/Advertising, Integrated Marketing Communications - Campaign, Advanced International marketing Communication Topic.
  • RDI Germany - Charted institute of Marketing:

    These are a certificate, advanced certificate and diploma in Charted Institute of Marketing (CIM) programmes. The Diploma in Marketing consists of four subjects namely: planning and control, Integrated Marketing Communications, International Marketing Strategy, Analysis and Decision.
  • American Marketing Association (USA):

    Programme in Marketing - The subjects include: Marketing Analysis and Planning/Segmenting, Targeting and Positioning/The 4 P's of Marketing: Product and Pricing/The 4 P's of Marketing: Consumer and Trade Promotion and Advertising/The 4 P's of Marketing: Distribution/Developing and Implementing a Market-Focused Strategy.
  • Qualifications and Curriculum Authority (QCA - Ireland):

    The following courses were considered:
    > Certificate in Marketing - VRQ Level 3.
    > Certificate in Advertising - VRQ Level 3.
    > City & Guilds Diploma in Communication Systems - VRQ Level 3.
    > ABC Certificate in Advertising and Promotion - VRQ Level 3.
    > ABC Certificate in advertising Design and Art Direction - VRQ Level 3.
    > ABC Award in Multi-media Software Skills - VRQ Level 3.
    > ABC Award in Visual Thinking - VRQ Level 3.
    > ABC Award in Copywriting - VRQ Level 3.
    > ABC Certificate in Typographic Design - VRQ Level 3.
    > EDEXCEL BTEC National Certificate in Multimedia - VRQ Level 3.
  • Institute of Practitioners in Advertising: United Kingdom in conjunction with London College of Communication and University of the Arts London:

    Courses/Certificates:
    > Access certificate in marketing communication.
    > Access to display design.
    > Advertising.
    > Advertising and promotion.
    > Advertising copywriting.
    > Applied graphic skills.
    > Copywriting.
    > Corporate identification and branding.
    > Design for art direction.
    > Print specification and production for designers.
    > Visual thinking.
    > Visual thinking application.

    Diploma's:
    > Diploma in digital pre-press.
    > Diploma in foundation studies (art and design) graphic design pathway.
    > Diploma in foundation studies (art and design) media pathway.
    > Diploma in new media publishing.
    > Diploma in print production (print media).
    > Diploma in print production (digital media).

    In general this Qualification and its component unit standards compare well with their international counterparts. Often, this National Diploma's content is made up of a number of courses and or diplomas in the various countries. The only major differences are in formatting, scope of coverage or focus. The differences identified in the level structures between the different countries, did however make direct equivalation difficult in some cases. 

  • ARTICULATION OPTIONS 
    Horizontal articulation possibilities lies with other NQF Level 5 Qualifications and Unit Standards in the learning areas:
  • 20896: "National Diploma: Marketing Research"
  • 20904: "National Diploma: Marketing Communications"

    Vertical progression can be achieved by embarking on the study of related NQF Level 6 or higher Qualifications:
  • 20905: "National First Degree: Marketing Communication"
  • 20897: "National First Degree: Marketing Research"
  • 23375: "Bachelor of Arts" - Generic: Communication Studies
  • 24516: "Bachelors Degree: Creative Brand Communications" 

  • MODERATION OPTIONS 
  • Anyone assessing a learner or moderating the assessment of a learner against this Qualification must register as an assessor with the relevant Education and Training Quality Assurance (ETQA) Body.
  • Any institution offering learning that will enable the achievement of this Qualification must be accredited as a provider with the relevant ETQA.
  • Assessment and moderation of assessment will be overseen by the relevant ETQA according to the ETQA's policies and guidelines for assessment and moderation; in terms of agreements reached around assessment and moderation between ETQA's (including professional bodies); and in terms of the moderation guideline detailed immediately below:
  • Moderation must include both internal and external moderation of assessments at exit points of the qualification, unless ETQA policies specify otherwise. Moderation should encompass achievement of the competence described in the Qualification. 

  • CRITERIA FOR THE REGISTRATION OF ASSESSORS 
    For an applicant to register as an assessor, the applicant should:
  • Be competent in all the outcomes of the National Assessor Unit Standard as stipulated by the South African Qualifications Authority (SAQA).
  • Be registered as an assessor with the relevant ETQA or an ETQA that has a memorandum of understanding with the relevant ETQA. 

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

    NOTES 
    Exit point for learners who do not complete the Qualification:
  • Learners will be credited with Unit Standards in which they have proved competence.
  • Learners who complete individual Unit Standards but do not complete this Qualification retain their credits. However, should the substance of the Unit Standard change, the validity of the credits towards the Qualification may be reviewed.
  • Learners who change their provider or learning site before completing the Qualification may transfer their credits to the new learning site. 

  • UNIT STANDARDS: 
      ID UNIT STANDARD TITLE PRE-2009 NQF LEVEL NQF LEVEL CREDITS
    Core  15237  Build teams to meet set goals and objectives  Level 5  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L5 
    Core  117581  Demonstrate an understanding of an advertising agency/design company  Level 5  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L5 
    Core  117597  Demonstrate an understanding of copy, copywriting and the copywriter  Level 5  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L5  12 
    Core  117604  Demonstrate an understanding of marketing communications production  Level 5  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L5 
    Core  10065  Demonstrate an understanding of marketing communications roles  Level 5  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L5  12 
    Core  117593  Demonstrate an understanding of the creative principles of copywriting in marketing communications  Level 5  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L5  10 
    Core  117600  Demonstrate an understanding of the creative writing process  Level 5  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L5 
    Core  117585  Demonstrate an understanding of the principles of persuasive copy  Level 5  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L5  11 
    Core  230469  Describe and apply conceptual processes in a marketing communication context  Level 5  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L5 
    Core  117598  Develop and present creative work and compile work portfolio  Level 5  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L5 
    Core  230470  Develop and write persuasive copy for advertising  Level 5  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L5 
    Core  117595  Evaluate media  Level 5  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L5 
    Core  10048  Identify brand mix elements  Level 5  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L5 
    Core  10050  Integrate marketing plans with business process  Level 5  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L5 
    Core  10064  Investigate and explain marketing communications concepts  Level 5  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L5 
    Core  10055  Present data to stakeholders  Level 5  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L5 
    Core  117602  Produce and write copy in marketing communications  Level 5  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L5  10 
    Core  117578  Recognise and apply conceptual and lateral thinking in the developmental process  Level 5  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L5  12 
    Core  230472  Develop and implement the marketing and advertising creative process  Level 6  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L6  10 
    Core  117589  Develop campaign, media and creative strategies  Level 6  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L6 
    Core  117586  Manage a communications project  Level 6  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L6  10 
    Fundamental  115792  Access, process, adapt and use data from a wide range of texts  Level 5  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L5 
    Fundamental  120304  Analyse, interpret and communicate information  Level 5  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L5 
    Fundamental  8648  Demonstrate an understanding of professional values and ethics  Level 5  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L5 
    Fundamental  119173  Develop and maintain effective working relationship with clients  Level 5  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L5 
    Fundamental  9224  Implement policies regarding HIV/AIDS in the workplace  Level 5  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L5 
    Fundamental  115789  Sustain oral interaction across a wide range of contexts and critically evaluate spoken texts  Level 5  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L5 
    Fundamental  115790  Write and present for a wide range of purposes, audiences and contexts  Level 5  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L5 
    Elective  15216  Create opportunities for innovation and lead projects to meet innovative ideas  Level 5  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L5 
    Elective  230471  Define and explain the nature, role and history of marketing communication  Level 5  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L5 
    Elective  117637  Demonstrate an understanding of the composition and dynamics of a creative team.  Level 5  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L5 
    Elective  117592  Develop and evaluate creative solutions for a variety of advertising mediums  Level 5  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L5  15 
    Elective  10054  Identify and manage areas of customer service impact  Level 5  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L5 
    Elective  10053  Manage customer requirements and needs and implement action plans  Level 5  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L5 
    Elective  117633  Source and apply creative ideas in visual communications  Level 5  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L5 


    LEARNING PROGRAMMES RECORDED AGAINST THIS QUALIFICATION: 
     
    LP ID Learning Programme Title Originator Pre-2009
    NQF Level
    NQF Level Min Credits Learning Prog End Date Quality
    Assurance
    Functionary
    NQF Sub-Framework
    35996  Diploma: Copywriting  AAA School of Advertising  Level 5  Level N/A: Pre-2009 was L5  334  2018-12-31  CHE  HEQSF 
    62618  Diploma: Copywriting  The Red & Yellow School of Logic & Magic  Level 5  Level N/A: Pre-2009 was L5  338  2018-12-31  CHE  HEQSF 
    49138  National Diploma: Copywriting  Generic Provider - Field 03  Level 5  Level N/A: Pre-2009 was L5  240     MICTS  OQSF 


    PROVIDERS CURRENTLY ACCREDITED TO OFFER THESE LEARNING PROGRAMMES: 
    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.
     
    LP ID Learning Programme Title Accredited Provider
    35996  Diploma: Copywriting  AAA School of Advertising  
    62618  Diploma: Copywriting  The Red & Yellow School of Logic & Magic  



    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.