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SOUTH AFRICAN QUALIFICATIONS AUTHORITY 
REGISTERED UNIT STANDARD: 

Demonstrate an understanding of earthworks 
SAQA US ID UNIT STANDARD TITLE
262685  Demonstrate an understanding of earthworks 
ORIGINATOR
SGB Civil Engineering Construction 
PRIMARY OR DELEGATED QUALITY ASSURANCE FUNCTIONARY
-  
FIELD SUBFIELD
Field 12 - Physical Planning and Construction Physical Planning, Design and Management 
ABET BAND UNIT STANDARD TYPE PRE-2009 NQF LEVEL NQF LEVEL CREDITS
Undefined  Regular  Level 2  NQF Level 02 
REGISTRATION STATUS REGISTRATION START DATE REGISTRATION END DATE SAQA DECISION NUMBER
Reregistered  2018-07-01  2023-06-30  SAQA 06120/18 
LAST DATE FOR ENROLMENT LAST DATE FOR ACHIEVEMENT
2024-06-30   2027-06-30  

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 unit standard replaces: 
US ID Unit Standard Title Pre-2009 NQF Level NQF Level Credits Replacement Status
116051  Demonstrate fundamental knowledge of earthworks  Level 2  NQF Level 02  Complete 

PURPOSE OF THE UNIT STANDARD 
This unit standard is intended for people who operate construction plant. They will be able to describe different soil types, demonstrating knowledge of bulk excavation, describing dumping and spreading operations and describing erosion control on earthworks. Learners who master the applied competence described in this unit standard will contribute to the development of a professional community of Construction Plant operators who are able to competently use science and technology when applying operation techniques.

The qualifying learner will be capable of:
  • Describing different soil types.
  • Demonstrating knowledge of bulk excavation.
  • Describing dumping and spreading operations.
  • Describing erosion control on earthworks.
  • Describing compaction of earthworks. 

  • LEARNING ASSUMED TO BE IN PLACE AND RECOGNITION OF PRIOR LEARNING 
    It is recommended that learners entering into a study of this unit standard will prove competence in the following to enable the achievement of this unit standard:
  • Communication at NQF Level 1.
  • Mathematical literacy at NQF Level 1. 

  • UNIT STANDARD RANGE 
    N/A 

    Specific Outcomes and Assessment Criteria: 

    SPECIFIC OUTCOME 1 
    Describe different soil types. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
    Cohesive and non-cohesive soils are identified and described in terms of their structure. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
    Cohesive and non-cohesive soils are identified and described in terms of their moisture content. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 3 
    Cohesive and non-cohesive soils are described in relation to machinery suitable for cutting, hauling, dumping, spreading and compacting. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 4 
    Methods of drying cohesive and non-cohesive soils is explained in relation to achieving a specified strength. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 5 
    Methods of wetting cohesive and non-cohesive soils is explained in relation to achieving a specified strength. 

    SPECIFIC OUTCOME 2 
    Demonstrate knowledge of bulk excavation. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
    Types of cutting operations are identified and related to different soil types. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
    Range of cutting operations include, but are not limited to:
  • Cut-to-waste, cut-to-fill, cut-to Stockpile and strip-to stockpile.
     

  • ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
    Cut-to-fill materials are identified and action to be taken at cut area is described in terms of requirements for cohesive and non-cohesive soil types. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 3 
    Principles of undercutting are described in relation to cohesive and non-cohesive soil types. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 4 
    Cut-to-waste operations are described in relation to the selection of disposal areas for reject materials and alternative uses for reconditioned cut-to-waste material. 

    SPECIFIC OUTCOME 3 
    Describe dumping and spreading operations. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
    Principles of dumping and layering are described in relation to soil type. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
    Range of layering includes, but is not limited to:
  • Straights, curves, rock sub-grade, thickness of layers and optimum moisture content.
     

  • ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
    Technical procedures for borrow areas are identified in accordance with company requirements. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
    Range of areas include, but are not limited to:
  • Restricted sites, drainage, sequence and re-instatement of site.
     

  • SPECIFIC OUTCOME 4 
    Describe erosion control at an earthworks site. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
    Means of controlling surface erosion are described according to standard industry practice. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
    Range of erosion controlling includes, but is not limited to:
  • Bench, batter and drainage.
     

  • ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
    Shaping and rehabilitating earthworks, including ceasing operations are described in relation to slope of terrain, availability of topsoil, re-grassing methods and rolling. 

    SPECIFIC OUTCOME 5 
    Describe compaction of earthworks materials. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
    Equipment/plant used for compaction is identified and described in terms of its function and materials. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
    Range of equipment/plant includes, but is not limited to:
  • Steel-wheeled roller, pneumatic-tyre roller, impact roller, grid roller, vibratory roller and kneading compactor roller.
     

  • ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
    Methods of compacting for different types of soil/materials are explained using examples. 


    UNIT STANDARD ACCREDITATION AND MODERATION OPTIONS 
  • Anyone assessing a learner or moderating the assessment of a learner against the qualification must be registered as an assessor with the relevant Education, Training, Quality, Assurance (ETQA) Body, or with an ETQA that has a Memorandum of Understanding with the relevant ETQA.
  • Any institution offering learning that will enable the achievement of this qualification must be accredited as a provider with the relevant Education, Training, Quality, Assurance (ETQA) Body, or with an ETQA that has a Memorandum of Understanding with the relevant ETQA.
  • Assessment and moderation of assessment will be overseen by the relevant Education, Training, Quality, Assurance (ETQA) Body, or by an ETQA that has a Memorandum of Understanding with the relevant ETQA, according to the ETQA's policies and guidelines for assessment and moderation.
  • Moderation must include both internal and external moderation of assessments, unless ETQA policies specify otherwise. Moderation should also encompass achievement of the competence described in the associated unit standards.
  • 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. 

  • UNIT STANDARD ESSENTIAL EMBEDDED KNOWLEDGE 
    The qualifying learner will be able to understand and explain relevant aspects of the following:
  • Cohesive and non-cohesive soils and materials.
  • Types of cutting operations in relation to different soil types.
  • Dumping and layering principles in relation to materials.
  • Surface erosion control on earthworks site.
  • Compaction methods, equipment and materials used. 

  • UNIT STANDARD DEVELOPMENTAL OUTCOME 
    N/A 

    UNIT STANDARD LINKAGES 
    N/A 


    Critical Cross-field Outcomes (CCFO): 

    UNIT STANDARD CCFO IDENTIFYING 
    Identify and solve problems related to the nature of soil types in order to determine the extent of wetting or drying to achieve compacting consistency in which responses display that critical thinking is used for responsible decision making. 

    UNIT STANDARD CCFO WORKING 
    Work effectively with others as a member of a plant operations team to determine compacting requirements in terms of the soil type. 

    UNIT STANDARD CCFO ORGANISING 
    Organise and manage oneself and one's activities responsibly and effectively in the provision of plant operation services. 

    UNIT STANDARD CCFO COLLECTING 
    Collect, analyse, organise and critically evaluate information about soil types and properties in order to provide specific earthmoving services. 

    UNIT STANDARD CCFO SCIENCE 
    Use knowledge of science and technology to explain the nature and extent of bulk excavation processes. 

    UNIT STANDARD ASSESSOR CRITERIA 
    N/A 

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

    UNIT STANDARD NOTES 
    This unit standard replaces unit standard 116051, "Demonstrate fundamental knowledge of earthworks", Level 2, 5 credits. 

    QUALIFICATIONS UTILISING THIS UNIT STANDARD: 
      ID QUALIFICATION TITLE PRE-2009 NQF LEVEL NQF LEVEL STATUS END DATE PRIMARY OR DELEGATED QA FUNCTIONARY
    Core  65789   National Certificate: Construction Plant Operations  Level 2  NQF Level 02  Reregistered  2023-06-30  CETA 


    PROVIDERS CURRENTLY ACCREDITED TO OFFER THIS UNIT STANDARD: 
    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.