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SOUTH AFRICAN QUALIFICATIONS AUTHORITY 
REGISTERED UNIT STANDARD: 

Apply knowledge of how archaeological deposits accumulate 
SAQA US ID UNIT STANDARD TITLE
119863  Apply knowledge of how archaeological deposits accumulate 
ORIGINATOR
SGB Archaeology 
PRIMARY OR DELEGATED QUALITY ASSURANCE FUNCTIONARY
-  
FIELD SUBFIELD
Field 07 - Human and Social Studies Traditions, History and Legacies 
ABET BAND UNIT STANDARD TYPE PRE-2009 NQF LEVEL NQF LEVEL CREDITS
Undefined  Regular  Level 3  NQF Level 03  10 
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 does not replace any other unit standard and is not replaced by any other unit standard. 

PURPOSE OF THE UNIT STANDARD 
This Unit Standard is intended for learners who work as field or laboratory assistants on a regular basis as part of an archaeological team. It may also be useful for learners in museums who do not have formal qualifications and learners on excavation sites who assist with excavations following set procedures.

The qualifying learner is capable of:
  • Explaining the basic principles of stratigraphy.
  • Identifying and interpreting variations in the deposit in a 2- and 3- dimensional context.
  • Explaining why and how findings are recorded on site.
  • Demonstrating how the deposit is processed at an archaeological excavation. 

  • LEARNING ASSUMED TO BE IN PLACE AND RECOGNITION OF PRIOR LEARNING 
    It is recommended that learners are competent in Communication and Mathematical Literacy at NQF Level 2. 

    UNIT STANDARD RANGE 
    Work on an excavation is under supervision. 

    Specific Outcomes and Assessment Criteria: 

    SPECIFIC OUTCOME 1 
    Explain the basic principles of stratigraphy. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
    The ways in which natural deposits accumulate at a site are explained with examples. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
    Ways in which deposits accumulate include, but are not limited to, water or wind borne, animal activity, erosion, geological processes, insects and plants.
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
    The ways in which cultural deposits accumulate at a site are explained with examples. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
    Ways include, but are not limited to, human related activity (food, refuse, structures), domestic animals, fire and material culture production and discarding.
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 3 
    Inconsistencies in the stratigraphic layers are identified and explained in terms of cause and effect. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
    Inconsistencies include post depositional muddling, hiatus, slumping, erosion and burrowing.
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 4 
    The basic principles of stratigraphy are explained with reference to time and space. 

    SPECIFIC OUTCOME 2 
    Identify and interpret variations in the deposit in 2- and 3- dimensional context. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
    Indications of variation in a deposit are identified and explained with reference to colour, texture and content. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
    The procedure to be followed when a change in deposit is identified is explained and an indication is given of the consequences of non-compliance in terms of local, national or international heritage value. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 3 
    The importance of a clean and organised working area and vertical section is explained with reference to recognition of variations in the deposit. 

    SPECIFIC OUTCOME 3 
    Explain why and how findings are recorded on a site. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
    The different methods of recording information on archaeological sites are identified and an indication is given of the purpose of each. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
    Methods include, but are not limited to, vertical and horizontal records, plans, labels, maps, photographs, horizontal and vertical surveying information, site notes and bucket logs.
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
    The destructive nature of an excavation is explained with reference to the need for accurate records. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 3 
    Vertical and horizontal dimensions are measured and recorded for a selected area of an excavation. 

    SPECIFIC OUTCOME 4 
    Demonstrate how the deposit is processed at an archaeological excavation or site. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
    The excavation process is demonstrated at a specific site. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
    Archaeological material is retrieved in a way that ensures provenance is retained of all the material. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 3 
    Archaeological material is sorted and packed for transport and analysis. 


    UNIT STANDARD ACCREDITATION AND MODERATION OPTIONS 
  • Anyone assessing a candidate against this Unit Standard must be registered as an assessor with the relevant ETQA or ETQA where a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) exists with the relevant ETQA.
  • Any institution offering learning that will enable achievement of this Unit Standard must be accredited as a provider through the relevant ETQA or ETQA where a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) exists with the relevant ETQA.
  • Moderation of assessment will be overseen by the relevant ETQA according to the moderation guidelines and the agreed ETQA procedures. 

  • UNIT STANDARD ESSENTIAL EMBEDDED KNOWLEDGE 
    N/A 

    UNIT STANDARD DEVELOPMENTAL OUTCOME 
    N/A 

    UNIT STANDARD LINKAGES 
    N/A 


    Critical Cross-field Outcomes (CCFO): 

    UNIT STANDARD CCFO WORKING 
    The learner is able to work effectively with others as a member of a team, in participating in the activities on an archaeological site. 

    UNIT STANDARD CCFO ORGANISING 
    The learner is able to organise and manage him/herself and his/her own activities responsibly and effectively in keeping his/her section clean and organised. 

    UNIT STANDARD CCFO COLLECTING 
    The learner is able to collect, organise and critically evaluate information in interpreting variations in the deposit. 

    UNIT STANDARD CCFO COMMUNICATING 
    The learner is able to communicate effectively in explaining how and why findings are recorded on a site. 

    UNIT STANDARD CCFO DEMONSTRATING 
    The learner is able to demonstrate an understanding of the world as a set of related systems in understanding the consequences if procedures are not followed on an archaeological site. 

    UNIT STANDARD CCFO CONTRIBUTING 
    The learner is able to participate as a responsible citizen in explaining the importance of retaining provenance for all material. 

    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 
    Search words:

    Archaeological deposits; archaeology; excavation; stratigraphy, heritage. 

    QUALIFICATIONS UTILISING THIS UNIT STANDARD: 
      ID QUALIFICATION TITLE PRE-2009 NQF LEVEL NQF LEVEL STATUS END DATE PRIMARY OR DELEGATED QA FUNCTIONARY
    Core  49772   National Certificate: Archaeology  Level 3  NQF Level 03  Passed the End Date -
    Status was "Reregistered" 
    2012-06-30  CATHSSETA 


    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.