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SOUTH AFRICAN QUALIFICATIONS AUTHORITY 
REGISTERED UNIT STANDARD: 

Demonstrate knowledge and insight into the methodology of polygraphy examinations 
SAQA US ID UNIT STANDARD TITLE
252166  Demonstrate knowledge and insight into the methodology of polygraphy examinations 
ORIGINATOR
Task Team - Polygraphy 
PRIMARY OR DELEGATED QUALITY ASSURANCE FUNCTIONARY
-  
FIELD SUBFIELD
Field 08 - Law, Military Science and Security Safety in Society 
ABET BAND UNIT STANDARD TYPE PRE-2009 NQF LEVEL NQF LEVEL CREDITS
Undefined  Regular  Level 5  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L5  15 
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 administer polygraph examinations and are required to follow a polygraph examination process to ensure the reliability of the process and the validity of the examination.

The qualifying learner is capable of:
  • Explaining the phases in the polygraph process.
  • Discussing different interview techniques used in polygraph examinations.
  • Constructing questions used in polygraph examinations.
  • Investigating the use of different test formats.
  • Interpreting polygrams.
  • Use an interpreter in a polygraph examination. 

  • LEARNING ASSUMED TO BE IN PLACE AND RECOGNITION OF PRIOR LEARNING 
    It is assumed that learners are competent in Communication and Mathematical Literacy at NQF Level 4. 

    UNIT STANDARD RANGE 
    The typical scope of this Unit Standard is the use of the polygraph to detect deception:
  • Questions should be unambiguous and the use of grammar should not inhibit understanding.
  • Forensic interviewing refers to interviewing with a legal purpose.
  • Polygraph examination refers to the complete polygraph process.
  • Test refers to the administration of specific questionnaires as part of the polygraph process. 

  • Specific Outcomes and Assessment Criteria: 

    SPECIFIC OUTCOME 1 
    Explain the phases in the polygraph process. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
    The phases of the polygraph process are analysed with reference to the stages and steps in each phase and their contribution to a polygraph examination. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
    Phases include pre examination, examination and post examination.
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
    Polygraph instruments are compared with reference to cost, ease of use and software. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 3 
    A polygraph instrument is operated and maintained with reference to adjusting settings on software, maintenance of sensors and trouble shooting common problems. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 4 
    The polygraph procedure and working of the polygraph instrument is explained and use of language is adapted for a selected examinee. 

    SPECIFIC OUTCOME 2 
    Discuss different interview techniques used in polygraph examina. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
    Techniques used in interviewing are explained with reference to establishing rapport, active listening, questioning and analysing verbal and non-verbal responses. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
    The adaptation of interview techniques to meet changing situations during the polygraph examination is explained with reference to controlling the interview, obtaining information and evaluating the information against the facts of the case. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 3 
    Specialist techniques used in forensic interviewing are explained with reference to the theory underpinning the technique and the application of each. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
    Techniques include, but are not limited to, cognitive and non-verbal communication.
     

    SPECIFIC OUTCOME 3 
    Construct questions for use in polygraph examinations. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
    The adaptation of interview techniques to meet changing situations during the polygraph examination is explained with reference to controlling the interview, obtaining information and evaluating the information against the facts of the case. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
    Specialist techniques used in forensic interviewing are explained with reference to the theory underpinning the technique and the application of each. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
    Techniques include, but are not limited to, cognitive and non-verbal communication.
     

    SPECIFIC OUTCOME 4 
    Construct questions for use in polygraph examinations. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
    Rules relating to the construction of different types of questions are analysed with reference to the characteristics of each type of question, semantics and when the use of each type of question is appropriate. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
    Questions are adapted to accommodate issues of diversity. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
    Issues of diversity include, but are not limited to, age, gender, sexual orientation, disability, culture, race, faith, class, socialisation of the individual, locus of control and language.
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 3 
    Questions are formulated that enable the polygrapher to reject or confirm the critical elements of the case. 

    SPECIFIC OUTCOME 5 
    Investigate the use of different test formats. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
    Different structured formats used in polygraph examinations are analysed with reference to the positioning of questions, combination of questions, use of comparison questions and the theory underpinning each. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
    Formats include, but are not limited to, Zone family, modified control questions family, modified control questions family, acquaintance or demonstration tests, relevant/irrelevant technique and peak of tension techniques.
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
    An appropriate format and questions are selected for a specific purpose. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
    Purposes include, but are not limited to, pre-employment, sex offender testing, specific issue testing and periodic screening.
     

    SPECIFIC OUTCOME 6 
    Interpret polygrams. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
    Different analysis techniques are applied to a polygram. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
    Analysis techniques include, but are not limited to, qualitative and quantitative scoring, horizontal and vertical.
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
    A polygram is analysed manually to determine the result of the examination. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 3 
    The effects of counter measures on a polygraph test are explained with examples. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 4 
    Software algorithms are used to support a decision. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 5 
    The tracings of a polygram are analysed using decision criteria to evaluate the response. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 6 
    Criteria for assessing the usability of a test are explained with reference to internationally accepted minimum standards. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 7 
    Reports used to provide feedback on. 

    SPECIFIC OUTCOME 7 
    Use an interpreter in a polygraph examination. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
    The advantages and disadvantages of using interpreters are discussed with examples. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
    The importance of non verbal communication in interviews involving a translator are explained with reference to the arrangements of the interview environment, observation of the subject, timing and the use of certified translators. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 3 
    Techniques for working with an interpreter are demonstrated with examples. 


    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, organise and critically evaluate information in obtaining investigating test formats and interpreting polygrams. 

    UNIT STANDARD CCFO COMMUNICATING 
    The learner is able to communicate effectively using visual, mathematics and language skills in interpreting polygrams and demonstrating techniques for working with interpreters. 

    UNIT STANDARD CCFO SCIENCE 
    The learner is able to use science and technology effectively and critically showing responsibility towards the health of others in using and maintaining a polygraph instrument. 

    UNIT STANDARD CCFO DEMONSTRATING 
    The learner is able to demonstrate cultural sensitivity in discussing the use of interpreters in polygraph examinations. 

    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 
    N/A 

    QUALIFICATIONS UTILISING THIS UNIT STANDARD: 
      ID QUALIFICATION TITLE PRE-2009 NQF LEVEL NQF LEVEL STATUS END DATE PRIMARY OR DELEGATED QA FUNCTIONARY
    Core  59258   National Certificate: Polygraphy  Level 5  Level TBA: Pre-2009 was L5  Reregistered  2023-06-30  SAS SETA 


    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.