THE REVISED HIGHER EDUCATION QUALIFICATIONS SUB-FRAMEWORK (HEQSF)
6.1 Recognises three broad qualification progression routes with permeable boundaries,namely, vocational, professional and general routes and provides greater clarity on the articulation possibilities between these qualification routes.
6.2 Introduces two additional qualification types to the existing nine, and includes additional variants of particular qualification types.
6.3 Clarifies the interpretation of some existing qualification types, namely, the Bachelor's Degree, as having two potential orientations - professional and general academic.
6.4 Provides for greater flexibility and options with respect to professionally-oriented qualifications.
6.5 Facilitates the potential convergence of diploma and degree study routes at the Honours level instead of at the Master's level as was previously the case.
6.6 Simplifies some of the parameters of qualification types such as credit specification within a qualification.
7. The revised HEQSF, in line with the previous framework, provides the basis for integrating all higher education qualifications into the National Qualifications Framework (NQF). It provides a basis for standards development and quality assurance.It provides a mechanism for improving the coherence of the higher education system and indicates the articulation routes between qualifications, thereby enhancing the flexibility of the system and enabling students to move more efficiently over time from one programme to another as they pursue their academic or professional careers.
8. Public confidence in academic standards requires public understanding of the achievements represented by higher education qualifications. The HEQSF is thus designed to ensure a consistent use of qualification titles and their designators and qualifiers.
9. The HEQSF establishes common parameters and criteria for qualifications design and facilitates the comparability of qualifications across the system. Within such common parameters programme diversity and innovation are encouraged. Higher education institutions have a broad scope within which to design educational offerings to realise their different visions, missions and plans and to meet the varying needs of the stakeholders and communities they serve.
10. The HEQSF thus operates within the context of a single but diverse and differentiated higher education system. It applies to all higher education programmes and qualifications offered in South Africa by public and private institutions