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How are learnership programmes developed

Setas approve learnership programmes, before forwarding them to the Department of Labour for registration.
A learnership however have a number of development stages before it can be finalised.

These stages include:

    *Employers / employer bodies and SETA’s identifying skills shortages and/or opportunities.
    *Defining the occupation, together with the required skills and knowledge required for successful completion of the occupation.
    *Providing this information to a relevant Standards Generating Body (SGB). The SGB will then form work group which would consists of employers, providers, employee representatives and interested parties.
    *The work group would then analyse the occupation and identify outcomes and stages of the occupation.
    *The outcomes and stages would then be clustered so that Unit standards could be developed.
    *The Unit Standards would then be clustered into a logical format for the qualification.
    *Guideline learning materials and assessment guides is then developed by the Seta for each of the unit standards.

The following components are necessary for the acquisition of competencies needed for work readiness or combined structured learning and work experience.

Structured learning: The nature of the structured learning component differs from country to country, but in South Africa would need to include:
Fundamental learning: It cannot be assumed that all learners have achieved sufficient grounding (“learning-to-learn” capabilities) to undertake the training or further learning necessary. At lower levels it may include language and mathematics, while at higher levels it could include communications skills, self-management, team-working capabilities and so on.
Core learning: This component refers to those areas of contextual knowledge that are necessary for specialised to be effective such as an introduction to social development, the workings of the labour market, entrepreneurships or industrial issues including health as safety, all of which are subsumed under “core” below.
Elective learning: This pertains to the theoretical knowledge which underpins application in the area of specification. Structured practical components, in a workshop or simulated workplace, may also be included (but may not replace work experience). This learning can take place in an institution such as a technical college, at an accredited NGO, private or company training centre, through technologically enhanced sites or at combination of these.
Work experience: This needs to be related to the structured learning and prepare the learner for competence assessment. It may take place at a single workplace, or be spread across several work sites.

Small enterprises could also provide work experience for learners if they form groups of training companies, which between them are able to provide the range of work experience required. It may also take place within a job creation programme linked to services or construction, or a development programme. For new entrepreneurs, work experience could be acquired through the performance of a number of supervised contracts of work.

An important part of a learnership will be assessment that will serve to indicate successful completion of a learnership as well as readiness to progress to further learning.