Learner support

Here is some information that will assist you, the learner either considering entering or already registered in a skills programme, to understand better the processes and procedures that have been put in place to benefit you by ensuring that your learning opportunity remains of the highest quality.


The South African Qualifications Authority (SAQA) came into being by an Act of Parliament in 1995 which mandates this body to oversee and ensure the quality of all education and training in South Africa. 

The South African Qualifications Authority (SAQA)

The South African Qualifications Authority (SAQA), through ensuring the development and implementation of the National Qualifications Framework (NQF), is working to ensure that all learners have access to quality assured learning that will open up work opportunities irrespective of their race, gender, or religion.

As a learner you will benefit from quality education and training provision that leads to qualifications based on nationally agreed world class standards that enjoy national recognition.  SAQA, through the NQF, is working with education and training providers to ensure the development of new qualifications and standards relevant to a changing world.

SAQA accredits Education and Training Quality Assurance (ETQAs) bodies (which includes SETAs and other professional bodies) to ensure that the education and training which learners receive is of the highest quality. These ETQAs in turn accredit providers to offer education and training in accordance with the standards and qualifications registered on the NQF.

As a learner planning your education and training make sure that the programmes and institutions you select meet SAQA requirements. This means that the institution(s) you select must be registered by the Department of Education (DOE) and accredited by the appropriate ETQAs. 

Recent developments in education and training have introduced learnership programmes.  Learnerships are new paraprofessional and vocational education and training programmes.  They combine theory and practice and culminate in a qualification that is registered on the NQF.  A learner who successfully completes a learnership will have a qualification that signals occupational competence and which is recognized throughout the country.

As a learner you may have gained a vast amount of knowledge over the years, but for which you may not have received formal recognition.  By means of Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) you may achieve credits for the learning you have acquired through informal means.

Should you feel you qualify for RPL, enquire at the Aquila Training Academy to enter the relevant programme for which you require credits.  Click here for the Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) policy of the Aquila Training Academy and Aquila Assessment Centre.

What is a National Qualifications Framework (NQF)?

It is a framework i.e. it sets the boundaries - a set of principles and guidelines which provide a vision, a philosophical base and an organisational structure - for construction, in this case, of a qualifications system. Detailed development and implementation is carried out within these boundaries.  It is national because it is a national resource, representing a national effort at integrating education and training into a unified structure of recognised qualifications.  It is a framework of qualifications, i.e. records of learner achievement.

In short, the NQF is the set of principles and guidelines by which records of learner achievement are registered to enable national recognition of acquired skills and knowledge, thereby ensuring an integrated system that encourages life-long learning.

What is an education and training provider?

A provider is a body which delivers learning programmes (which culminate in registered National Qualifications Framework standards or qualifications) and/or manages the assessment thereof.  Providers include companies, work-based training centres, educational institutions - both private and state-funded - such as colleges, technikons, non-government and community based organisations.  The following three types of providers are identified:

Delivery only

This is a provider who is responsible for delivering education and training and who undertakes formative assessments of these.

Assessment only

This is a provider who is responsible for summative assessments and for assessment in relation to Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL).  RPL practitioners assist learners/candidates by mentoring and coaching and thereby preparing the learner for assessment.

Delivery and assessment site

This is a provider who both delivers learning programmes and manages the assessment thereof.  The Aquila Training Academy is accredited and registered for both programme delivery and assessment. Click here for the reassessment policy of the Aquila Training Academy and Aquila Assessment Centre.

A provider needs to seek accreditation with the relevant SAQA accredited Education and Training Quality Assurance body.

We provide learner support for all our registered learners and those who have been assessed by any of our assessors.  Please contact us at support@aquilagroup.co.za should you require any assistance during your learning programme(s).

(with acknowledgement to the South African Qualifications Authority for information appearing on their website)