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 Certificate: Plastics Manufacturing 
SAQA QUAL ID QUALIFICATION TITLE
49449  National Certificate: Plastics Manufacturing 
ORIGINATOR
SGB Plastics Manufacturing 
PRIMARY OR DELEGATED QUALITY ASSURANCE FUNCTIONARY NQF SUB-FRAMEWORK
MERSETA - Manufacturing, Engineering and Related Services Education and Training Authority  OQSF - Occupational Qualifications Sub-framework 
QUALIFICATION TYPE FIELD SUBFIELD
National Certificate  Field 06 - Manufacturing, Engineering and Technology  Manufacturing and Assembly 
ABET BAND MINIMUM CREDITS PRE-2009 NQF LEVEL NQF LEVEL QUAL CLASS
Undefined  126  Level 3  NQF Level 03  Regular-Unit Stds Based 
REGISTRATION STATUS SAQA DECISION NUMBER REGISTRATION START DATE REGISTRATION END DATE
Reregistered  SAQA 06120/18  2018-07-01  2023-06-30 
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 qualification replaces: 
Qual ID Qualification Title Pre-2009 NQF Level NQF Level Min Credits Replacement Status
20889  National Certificate: Plastics Manufacturing  Level 3  NQF Level 03  120  Complete 

PURPOSE AND RATIONALE OF THE QUALIFICATION 
The purpose of the qualification is to provide learners, education and training providers and employers with the standards and the range of learning required to satisfy the challenges of participating effectively in the plastics manufacturing industry.

For those who have been in the workplace for a long time, this qualification can be used in the Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) process to assess and recognise workplace skills acquired without the benefit of formal education or training.

For the new entrant or for someone changing from another field, this qualification describes the learning outcomes (the skills, knowledge and values) required to effectively participate in a structured workplace.

For education and training providers, this qualification provides guidance for the development of appropriate learning programmes. For employers, this qualification enables skills gaps to be identified and programmes to close skills gaps to be developed, and acts as an external benchmark for fulfilling the criteria of national and international quality standards such as ISO 9000:2000.

This qualification recognises the skills, knowledge and values acquired by learners involved in controlling operations in plastics manufacturing processes and influencing decisions in enterprises which use such processes. The chief skills required for this qualification are:
  • Understanding and implementing basic approaches to using and looking after machinery and equipment.
  • Understanding and implementing procedures related to various aspects of the production process.
  • Relating principles and concepts to workplace activities, materials and equipment.

    Hand skills play a minor role in this qualification.

    Qualified learners will also understand:
  • The basics of how a business functions.
  • Their role in the business, i.e. in production and related activities.
  • How they are affected by legislation, regulations, agreements and policies related to their particular work environment.

    With this understanding, learners will be able to participate in workplace activities.

    Qualifying learners will also be able to relate what they see and experience to scientific and technological principles and concepts. They will also understand how they should operate within the legislative, safety and quality systems which govern their workplace.

    What learners achieve in this qualification will also serve as a basis for further learning where they will engage more directly in controlling and troubleshooting the production processes.

    This qualification can be obtained in the context of any volume plastics manufacturing process, e.g.
  • Injection moulding.
  • Blow moulding.
  • Various kinds of extrusion.
  • Variations of thermoforming.
  • Rotational moulding.
  • Calendaring.
  • Compression and related moulding processes.
  • Reaction injection moulding.
  • Polymer composites fabrication processes such as pultrusion, filament winding and resin injection.

    The volume production process also includes the regeneration of recycled materials and the manufacture of intermediate products such as sheet, profiles, compounds and master batches.

    Rationale:

    The plastics manufacturing industry is characterized by sophisticated manufacturing processes operating in a competitive and challenging environment. The manufactured products have to respond to a wide variety of exacting customer and consumer requirements. In addition, the industry has to respond to competition from imports, export markets, on-going development of new products as the result of changing customer needs, and environmental issues.

    This means that people working in the industry require a range of skills and knowledge to help them respond to the exacting quality requirements and ongoing change.

    This is the second qualification in a series in a career path involving plastics manufacturing processes. This series of qualifications reflects the skills, knowledge and understanding required to participate effectively in the plastics manufacturing industry, whether in micro, small, medium or large operations. 

  • LEARNING ASSUMED TO BE IN PLACE AND RECOGNITION OF PRIOR LEARNING 
    The credits and the related unit standards assume that the learner has a National Certificate in Plastics Manufacturing NQF Level 2 or an equivalent qualification, or has experience of plastics manufacturing production processes.

    If a learner does not already have such qualifications or experience, this does not preclude him/her from starting. It will, however, require an increase in learning time.

    The credits also assume that the learner will be working towards this qualification as part of a learning programme which integrates all the required unit standards.

    Recognition of prior learning:

    This qualification may be obtained through a process of RPL. The learner should be thoroughly briefed prior to the assessment and support should be provided to assist the learner in the process of developing a portfolio. The guidelines for integrated assessment should be used to develop the RPL assessment process. As with integrated assessment, while this is primarily a workplace-based qualification, evidence from other areas of endeavour may be introduced if pertinent to any of the exit-level outcomes. 

    RECOGNISE PREVIOUS LEARNING? 

    QUALIFICATION RULES 
    N/A 

    EXIT LEVEL OUTCOMES 
    1. Perform routine operations on plastics manufacturing equipment using related information.

    2. Understand, use and apply policies and procedures to maintain materials, equipment, work-place relations, safety and quality.

    3. Contribute to workgroup efforts. 

    ASSOCIATED ASSESSMENT CRITERIA 
    1:
  • Materials, moulds, dies and forming devices and finished product are transported safely and effectively.
  • Routine operations, including cleaning, starting and stopping processes and assistance with the installation of moulds, dies and forming devices are carried out safely, effectively and together with other team members.

    2:
  • Procedures can be explained and applied routinely and effectively.
  • Reports, recording of conditions, outputs and incidents is done accurately and timeously.

    3:
  • Production schedules and assignments are met.
  • Production workflow is managed efficiently.
  • Workgroup goals are met.
  • Assistance and support is provided where required.
  • Active participation in workgroup discussions, in workgroup problem solving activities and in the implementation of solutions.
  • Relevant information is received and passed on.

    Integrated Assessment:

    To achieve the aims of integrated assessment it is recommended that the assessor assesses all components of the learning for this qualification simultaneously and that credits are awarded for the unit standards during this assessment.

    It is recommended that learning components (i.e. fundamental and core) are combined into assignments and projects which are then included in the portfolio of evidence. This will form the basis for the bulk of the assessment. The assessor can then focus on specific areas for further probing and verification.

    The assessment process should:
  • Cover both the explicit tasks required for the qualification as well as the understanding of the concepts and principles which underpin the activities and the manufacturing process.
  • Establish how the critical outcomes have been advanced by the learning process.

    The integrated assessment must be based on a summative assessment guide. The guide will spell out how the assessor will assess different aspects of the performance and will include:
  • Looking at records and reports in the portfolio and reviewing previous assessments.
  • Asking questions and initiating short discussions to test understanding.
  • Observing the learner at work (in the primary activity as well as in other interactions).

    The learner may choose in which language s/he wants to be assessed. This should be established as part of a process of preparing the learner for assessment and familiarising the learner with the approach being taken.

    While this is primarily a workplace-based qualification, evidence from other areas of endeavour may be introduced if pertinent to any of the exit-level outcomes.

    Assessors should also evaluate evidence that the learner has been performing consistently over a period of time. 

  • INTERNATIONAL COMPARABILITY 
    The 2002 version of this series of qualifications was largely based on the qualifications developed by the Plastics Industry Training Board in 1995. These had been benchmarked against the German trade qualification Kunstoffformber/in in terms of duration, training content and occupational competency but had been broken down into three stages corresponding eventually to NQF levels 2, 3 and 4 which mapped to the three year duration of the apprenticeship. The German qualifications were chosen as a result of a survey of qualifications in the plastics industry in the early 1990s.The South African industry had, however, identified a need for one further NQF level which represented a further development of the occupational competencies (i.e. level 5).

    The original German qualification was subsequently revised in 1997 and was extended by a further year and contained some of the elements contained in the NQF level 5 qualification. The German qualification is now called Kunststoffverfahrersmechaniker/in.

    The German qualification has also subsequently become a benchmark for many other European countries, except the United Kingdom.

    The NQF qualifications also broadly correspond to other occupational profiles in Germany which represent other skill sets related to plastics manufacturing (occupations not based on extended apprenticeships).

    Table: a comparison between NQF levels, German occupational qualifications, and South African occupational titles.

    NQF 5; Kunststoff-Kautschuktechiker/in; Process technician, Setter/supervisor
    NQF 4; Kunststoffwarenmacher/in; Setter
    NQF 2; Kunststoffpresser/in or Kunststoffspritzer/in; Operator

    The NQF level 3 represents a learning stage between NQF 2 and NQF 4 and does not map to a specific occupation or to a formal job designation in industry. Level 3 practitioners are variously referred to as 'senior operator' or 'trainee setter'.

    A search for qualifications in other countries has revealed little useful information. While there are hints of qualifications in India and the mid- and far-eastern countries, very little concrete information can be obtained. India appears, in part, o be making use of NVQs from the United Kingdom. Most of the other certifications appear to be based on short courses and occupational competence is not described.

    No evidence of African qualifications was found. There is some evidence of qualifications in South America (Brazil & Mexico) but there is no concrete information.

    There are no formal national qualifications in the United States of America, but there is evidence of regional qualifications of the apprenticeship type and some voluntary qualifications from the major employer association. These have a skew towards engineering and machine maintenance rather than manufacturing processes. The SGB therefore used:
  • The occupational profile generated by the Bureau of Labor Statistics within the U.S. Department of Labor for Machine Setters, Operators, and Tenders-Metal and Plastics.
  • The generic manufacturing skills standards produced by the Manufacturing Skills Standards Council.
  • The National Certification in Plastics (NCP), the NCP Body of Knowledge (BOK) and the NCP Study Guide of the Society of Plastics Industry Inc, (SPI).

    The SPI programme for operators is a voluntary certification programme.

    The Canadian Plastics Sector Council commissioned a project in 2001 to develop occupational standards but there are no published results yet.

    The qualifications were therefore compared to:
  • NVQ/SVQ Levels 1, 2 and 3 and modern apprenticeship qualifications in the United Kingdom, Polymer Technology Higher National Certificate (BTEC), National Certificate in Polymer Technology.
  • National Certificate in Plastics Processing Technology Levels 1 - 4 and National Certificate in Plastics Engineering (Level 4) both the unit standards and the modern apprenticeship (Plastics Process Technician and Plastics Engineer).
  • Certificate II, III in Plastics and Certificate IV in Polymer Technology and some of the training materials in Australia.
  • United States Manufacturing Skills Standards.

    The comparison was done in the following ways:
  • Entry requirements.
  • Duration.
  • Occupational profile, duties, responsibilities.
  • Course content or essential knowledge.

    Findings: There is an overall pattern to the occupational roles, the occupational levels and hence the qualifications, both those based on an apprenticeship and those based on assessment against competency standards. Each country has small areas that are different but by-and-large the levels, occupational roles and course content is similar. This is not surprising since the machinery and the processes are very similar around the world and so the demands on people would also be similar. What is interesting since the last comparison in 2001 is the constant review and continuous improvement in the level and quality of certifications exhibited. Increasingly sophisticated processes require higher-order skills and greater knowledge.

    The South African qualifications correspond very closely to this overall pattern. The only exceptional areas were:
  • NQF level 3: the qualification and some of the skills are not significantly reflected elsewhere - this is generally an invisible transition.
  • NQF level 5: The outcomes in this level of learning are beyond the normal qualification exit points, i.e. the level of those who have recently completed training - the South African qualification represents additional learning and experience and forms a transition to the national certificates or diplomas in polymer technology, generally offered by institutions of higher education in most countries.
  • Mathematics and communication: No other qualification elsewhere in the world requires the levels of communication and mathematics that are imposed on these qualifications by SAQA policies. 

  • ARTICULATION OPTIONS 
    The qualification has been designed and structured so that qualifying learners can move from one manufacturing context to another. They will have to acquire the specific knowledge related to the new context and adjust their skills and values accordingly.

    Employers or institutions should be able to evaluate the outcomes of this qualification against the needs of their context and structure top-up learning appropriately.

    Holders of other qualifications may be evaluated against this qualification for the purpose of RPL and placement in learning programmes. 

    MODERATION OPTIONS 
    Moderators for the qualification should be qualified and accredited with an appropriate Education, Training Quality Assurance Body (ETQA) and have a qualification in manufacturing, preferably in plastics manufacturing.

    To assure the quality of the assessment process, the moderation should cover one of more of the following:
  • Assessor credentials.
  • The assessment instrument.
  • The assessment process (including preparation and post-assessment feedback). 

  • CRITERIA FOR THE REGISTRATION OF ASSESSORS 
    The following criteria should be applied by the relevant ETQA:

    1. Appropriate qualification in the field of plastics manufacturing at NQF Level 4.

    2. A minimum of 18 months' experience in a plastics manufacturing environment. The subject matter expertise of the assessor can be established by recognition of prior learning.

    3. Be active in the industry and be familiar with the materials, machinery, products and level of technology in which the learner has contextualised his/her skills and knowledge.

    4. Assessed successfully against a nationally recognised unit standard/s reflecting experience and understanding of assessment theory, processes and practices.

    5. Good interpersonal skills and the ability to balance the conflicting requirements of:
  • Maintaining national standards.
  • The interests of the learner.
  • The need for transformation and redressing the legacies of the past.
  • The cultural background and language of the learner.
  • An understanding of outcomes-based education and training methodologies and the principles and policies related to the National Qualifications Framework.

    6. Registration as an assessor with a relevant ETQA.

    7. Any other criteria required by a relevant ETQA. 

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

    NOTES 
    This qualification replaces qualification 20889, "National Certificate: Plastics Manufacturing", Level 3, 120 credits. 

    UNIT STANDARDS: 
      ID UNIT STANDARD TITLE PRE-2009 NQF LEVEL NQF LEVEL CREDITS
    Core  13234  Apply quality procedures  Level 3  NQF Level 03 
    Core  13223  Apply safety, health and environmental protection procedures  Level 3  NQF Level 03 
    Core  14645  Control depot expenditure budget  Level 3  NQF Level 03 
    Core  12457  Develop learning strategies and techniques  Level 3  NQF Level 03 
    Core  12456  Explain and use organisational procedures  Level 3  NQF Level 03 
    Core  9530  Manage work time effectively  Level 3  NQF Level 03 
    Core  119174  Perform routine maintenance tasks on plastics manufacturing equipment  Level 3  NQF Level 03 
    Core  119162  Perform routine operations on plastics manufacturing equipment  Level 3  NQF Level 03  10 
    Core  116720  Show understanding of diversity in the workplace  Level 3  NQF Level 03 
    Core  119142  Transport and care for tooling in plastics manufacturing processes  Level 3  NQF Level 03 
    Core  9533  Use communication skills to handle and resolve conflict in the workplace  Level 3  NQF Level 03 
    Core  119169  Work with and look after materials in the plastics manufacturing production process  Level 3  NQF Level 03  12 
    Fundamental  8968  Accommodate audience and context needs in oral communication  Level 3  NQF Level 03 
    Fundamental  12488  Complete feasibility and commissioning reports  Level 3  NQF Level 03 
    Fundamental  9010  Demonstrate an understanding of the use of different number bases and measurement units and an awareness of error in the context of relevant calculations  Level 3  NQF Level 03 
    Fundamental  9013  Describe, apply, analyse and calculate shape and motion in 2-and 3-dimensional space in different contexts  Level 3  NQF Level 03 
    Fundamental  12429  Develop a personal financial plan  Level 3  NQF Level 03 
    Fundamental  8969  Interpret and use information from texts  Level 3  NQF Level 03 
    Fundamental  9012  Investigate life and work related problems using data and probabilities  Level 3  NQF Level 03 
    Fundamental  10712  Manage personal expenditure  Level 3  NQF Level 03 
    Fundamental  8973  Use language and communication in occupational learning programmes  Level 3  NQF Level 03 
    Fundamental  7456  Use mathematics to investigate and monitor the financial aspects of personal, business and national issues  Level 3  NQF Level 03 
    Fundamental  8970  Write texts for a range of communicative contexts  Level 3  NQF Level 03 
    Elective  9357  Develop and use keyboard skills to enter text  Level 1  NQF Level 01 
    Elective  14445  Frame and implement an individual action plan to improve productivity within an organisational unit  Level 1  NQF Level 01 
    Elective  12465  Develop a learning plan and a portfolio for assessment  Level 2  NQF Level 02 
    Elective  114104  Handle production waste  Level 2  NQF Level 02 
    Elective  116231  Operate a cab controlled overhead crane  Level 2  NQF Level 02 
    Elective  116254  Operate a mobile crane  Level 2  NQF Level 02  20 
    Elective  243272  Operate a Mobile Elevating Work Platform (MEWP)  Level 2  NQF Level 02  10 
    Elective  116235  Operate a pendant controlled overhead crane  Level 2  NQF Level 02 
    Elective  262824  Operate a Sideboom  Level 2  NQF Level 02 
    Elective  116255  Operate a tower crane  Level 2  NQF Level 02  20 
    Elective  116253  Operate a truck mounted loader crane  Level 2  NQF Level 02  20 
    Elective  242981  Operate defined purpose lift trucks  Level 2  NQF Level 02 
    Elective  242976  Operate overhead/gantry cranes  Level 2  NQF Level 02 
    Elective  12483  Perform basic first aid  Level 2  NQF Level 02 
    Elective  243021  Shift loads using lifting equipment  Level 2  NQF Level 02 
    Elective  12463  Understand and deal with HIV/AIDS  Level 2  NQF Level 02 
    Elective  119179  Conduct simple tests during the plastics manufacturing process  Level 3  NQF Level 03 
    Elective  119182  Control materials and consumables for plastics manufacturing processes  Level 3  NQF Level 03 
    Elective  244407  Lift and move a load using mechanical lifting equipment  Level 3  NQF Level 03 
    Elective  260798  Operate a cantilever container crane (ship to shore)  Level 3  NQF Level 03  12 
    Elective  260777  Operate a container side loader  Level 3  NQF Level 03 
    Elective  260818  Operate a counter balanced lift truck in excess of 15 tons  Level 3  NQF Level 03 
    Elective  260763  Operate a floating crane  Level 3  NQF Level 03  12 
    Elective  260760  Operate a inland container crane (rail mounted)  Level 3  NQF Level 03  10 
    Elective  260761  Operate a reach stacker  Level 3  NQF Level 03  10 
    Elective  260765  Operate a rubber tyred gantry crane  Level 3  NQF Level 03  12 
    Elective  260817  Operate a scotch derrick crane (ship mounted)  Level 3  NQF Level 03  10 
    Elective  260764  Operate a ships crane  Level 3  NQF Level 03 
    Elective  260797  Operate a sideloader lift truck  Level 3  NQF Level 03 
    Elective  260757  Operate a straddle carrier  Level 3  NQF Level 03  10 
    Elective  260780  Operate a sugar cane crane  Level 3  NQF Level 03 
    Elective  260781  Operate a telescopic boom handler  Level 3  NQF Level 03  10 
    Elective  260758  Operate a wall-mounted jib  Level 3  NQF Level 03 
    Elective  242972  Operate advanced defined purpose lift trucks  Level 3  NQF Level 03 
    Elective  242974  Operate counter-balanced lift truck  Level 3  NQF Level 03 
    Elective  242982  Operate heavy crane  Level 3  NQF Level 03  14 
    Elective  260762  Operate rough terrain/earthmoving/agricultural equipment  Level 3  NQF Level 03  11 
    Elective  123260  Operate tailgates and tail-lifts  Level 3  NQF Level 03 
    Elective  242978  Operate truck-mounted cranes  Level 3  NQF Level 03 
    Elective  8039  Operating cranes  Level 3  NQF Level 03  10 
    Elective  8038  Operating lift trucks  Level 3  NQF Level 03 
    Elective  253658  Perform a lifting task by using a mobile crane  Level 3  NQF Level 03 
    Elective  12455  Perform the role of a safety, health and environmental protection representative  Level 3  NQF Level 03 
    Elective  7567  Produce and use spreadsheets for business  Level 3  NQF Level 03 
    Elective  7570  Produce word processing documents for business  Level 3  NQF Level 03 
    Elective  117001  Use a mobile crane to carry out pile driving  Level 3  NQF Level 03 
    Elective  243273  Monitor and control the safety and operations of Mobile Elevating Work Platforms  Level 4  NQF Level 04 
    Elective  116583  Perform tandem lifting  Level 4  NQF Level 04  12 
    Elective  253660  Supervise advanced mobile crane operations  Level 4  NQF Level 04  20 


    LEARNING PROGRAMMES RECORDED AGAINST THIS QUALIFICATION: 
    When qualifications are replaced, some (but not all) of their learning programmes are moved to the replacement qualifications. If a learning programme appears to be missing from here, please check the replaced 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.
     
    1. College of Production Technology 
    2. DMP Training (PINETOWN) (TP) 
    3. Plastics Federation of South Africa (MAITLAND) (TP) 
    4. Plastics Federation of South Africa (MIDRAND) (TP) 
    5. Plastics Federation of South Africa (WESTMEAD) (TP) 
    6. Polyoak Business School (Pty) Ltd (DIEP RIVER) (TP) 
    7. PS Productive Services (WESTVILLE) (TP) 



    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.