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SOUTH AFRICAN QUALIFICATIONS AUTHORITY 
REGISTERED UNIT STANDARD: 

Demonstrate knowledge of Iron Age archaeology 
SAQA US ID UNIT STANDARD TITLE
119869  Demonstrate knowledge of Iron Age archaeology 
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 4  NQF Level 04  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 to allow for specialisation for learners who work as field assistants on archaeological sites or as laboratory assistants in museums or universities. It should allow learners to engage with issues and to understand the finer details of Iron Age sites thereby becoming better excavators. It should be useful for recreational archaeologists and learners on excavation sites who assist with excavations following set procedures and who do not have formal qualifications.

The qualifying learner is capable of:
  • Explaining the origins of the Iron Age in Africa.
  • Investigating mining and metallurgy in Iron Age Southern Africa.
  • Investigating Iron Age farming practices in Southern Africa.
  • Explaining settlement patterns and the rise of complex societies in Southern Africa.
  • Inferring information about Iron Age traditions from artefacts.
  • Identifying evidence of trade and exchange. 

  • 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 3. 

    UNIT STANDARD RANGE 
    This Unit Standard is for learners working under supervision as assistants on Colonial sites. 

    Specific Outcomes and Assessment Criteria: 

    SPECIFIC OUTCOME 1 
    Explain the origins of the Iron Age in Africa. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
    The history of smelting is investigated with reference to the introduction of smelting into Africa. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
    The origins of domesticated animals are explained with reference to the Middle East and Africa. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 3 
    The origins of domesticated grains in Africa are explained with examples. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 4 
    The origin of Early Iron Age people in Southern Africa is explained with reference to pottery style and language. 

    SPECIFIC OUTCOME 2 
    Investigate mining and metallurgy in Iron Age Southern Africa. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
    Metals that were mined and smelted in Iron Age Southern Africa are identified in terms of use. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
    Processes that were used to extract and work metal are inferred from features and residues at Iron Age sites. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 3 
    Customs and beliefs relating to metal and metal production are described from indigenous knowledge systems. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 4 
    Significant ore resources used in Iron Age times are identified with reference to time and space. 

    SPECIFIC OUTCOME 3 
    Investigate Iron Age farming practices. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
    Crop farming practices rare identified and explained for different regions. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
    Explanation to include what, where and how.
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
    Animal husbandry practices are explained with reference to socio economic systems. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 3 
    Methods of storing food are explained for daily and ritual use. 

    SPECIFIC OUTCOME 4 
    Explain settlement patterns and the rise of complex societies in Southern Africa. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
    Different settlement patterns are explained for Early Stone Age, Central Cattle Pattern and Zimbabwe Valley village pattern layouts. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
    Stonewall settlement patterns are interpreted with reference to function, status and period. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
    Interpretation includes position of the settlement and enclosures within the settlement.
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 3 
    The relationship between architectural style, people and settlement pattern is explained with examples. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 4 
    The rise of complex societies is explained with reference to the social dynamics of different periods. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
    Complex societies include, but are not limited to, Mapungubwe, Great Zimbabwe, Thulamela, Zulu Kingdom, Sotho-Tswana megacities and the Swazi Kingdom.
     

    SPECIFIC OUTCOME 5 
    Infer information about Iron Age traditions and customs from artefacts. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
    Ceramics are classified according to function, decoration, position of decoration and shape. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
    The concepts of phases and facies are explained with reference to regional variation. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 3 
    A commonly accepted archaeological pottery classification system is used to date and place pottery. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 4 
    Traditions and beliefs of Iron Age peoples are inferred from selected artefacts. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
    Artefacts include, figurines, beads, gold and ivory artefacts and rock paintings.
     

    SPECIFIC OUTCOME 6 
    Identify evidence of trade and exchange. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
    Trade objects are identified according to origin and period. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
    Local and international trade is investigated in Iron Age Southern Africa. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
    Trade includes, but is not limited to, slaves, gold, ivory, hides, tin and iron exports and cloth, ceramics and porcelain, glass beads, cotton and maize imports.
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 3 
    The history of trade with Europe and the East and its impact on southern Africa is outlined for the period from 700 to 1800 AD (CE). 


    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 COLLECTING 
    The learner is able to collect, evaluate and organise information in investigating mining and metallurgy in Southern Africa. 

    UNIT STANDARD CCFO COMMUNICATING 
    The learner is able to communicate effectively in explaining the origins of the Iron Age in Africa. 

    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:
  • Iron Age; archaeology; iron smelting; metallurgy; indigenous history, heritage. 

  • QUALIFICATIONS UTILISING THIS UNIT STANDARD: 
      ID QUALIFICATION TITLE PRE-2009 NQF LEVEL NQF LEVEL STATUS END DATE PRIMARY OR DELEGATED QA FUNCTIONARY
    Elective  57712   Further Education and Training Certificate: Generic Management  Level 4  NQF Level 04  Reregistered  2023-06-30  As per Learning Programmes recorded against this Qual 
    Elective  71549   Further Education and Training Certificate: Tourist Guiding  Level 4  NQF Level 04  Reregistered  2023-06-30  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.