Foundational Learning Competence


  1. What is the QCTO?

    The QCTO acronym stands for the Quality Council for Trades and Occupations. It is the third quality assurance council to be established, the other two being the Council on Higher Education (CHE) and the Council for Quality Assurance in General and Further Education and Training, better known as Umalusi.

  2. What is Foundational Learning Competence (FLC)?

    Foundational Learning Competence is a part qualification consisting of two learning areas: Communications and Mathematical Literacy. It describes the minimum competence needed in these two key areas that is required by people to function optimally in the world of work. The FLC describes the minimum competence required of learners to deal successfully with occupational learning at NQF Levels 2-4.

  3. What is the rationale for requiring learners to complete Foundational Learning Competence?

    The skills developed in the two learning areas, Communications and Mathematical Literacy, have been identified as foundational for learners wanting to progress in their occupation and skills development.

  4. What is Foundational Learning Competence in Communications?

    The Foundational Learning Competence in Communications describes the knowledge of language and the thinking processes required to communicate effectively in the workplace.

  5. What is Foundational Learning Competence in Mathematical Literacy?

    The Foundational Learning Competence in Mathematical Literacy is the minimum, generic mathematical literacy that will provide learners with an adequate foundation to cope with the mathematical demands of occupational training and to engage meaningfully in real-life situations involving mathematics.

  6. What curricula are used for Foundational Learning Competence?

    There are three documents that describe the learning required for the FLC, namely the Foundational Learning Competence Part Qualification (which contains the Exit Level Outcomes and Associated Assessment Criteria for both Communications and Mathematical Literacy), the Foundational Learning Competence Communication in English: Curriculum Framework and the Foundational Learning Competence Communication in Mathematical Literacy: Curriculum Framework. These are registered with the QCTO, and provide detailed specifications of knowledge, content, applied skills, range statements and assessment requirements.

  7. What is the relationship between the FLC part qualification, assessments in Foundational Learning Competence, the Foundational Learning Competence curricula and learning programmes?

    The part qualification Foundational Learning Competence (FLC) outlines the outcomes expected from a learner who has successfully completed the final assessment for the FLC. The FLC assessment is an external assessment that focusses on the competencies outlined in the part qualification. The assessment may be written once a learner has completed a learning programme for FLC in either Communications or Mathematical Literacy i.e. the learner has received tuition in the requirements.

  8. Do all learners have to do the Foundational Learning Competence assessment?

    • All learners doing an occupational qualification at NQF Levels 3 and 4 will be required to have and FLC in order for the qualification to be awarded. Some learners may feel that they have achieved the FLC competence. Such learners are invited to do the FLC final/summative assessment to ensure they have the required literacy and numeracy skills of the FLC. In the event of the learner not being able to prove, through the FLC assessment, that they have the FLC competence, it will be advisable that they undertake a learning programme in the area(s) where there is a learning gap.
    • Learners who have passed Grade 12 since 2008 and hold the NSC with passes in both English and Mathematics or Mathematical Literacy may be exempt from the FLC, provided they have passed both learning areas with a reasonably good pass mark.
    • The employer or training centre however may require that they complete the FLC assessment even if they have completed Grade 12.
    • People with a Grade 12 certificate prior to 2008 that does not include mathematics will be required to at least do the FLC assessment for Mathematical Literacy.
  9. What level of competence should be in place before a learner enters a Foundational Learning Competence learning programme?

    A learner who is competent at ABET Level 3 in the learning area should be able to manage the FLC learning programme.

    How it all fits in: