SAQA 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.
SOUTH AFRICAN QUALIFICATIONS AUTHORITY 
REGISTERED UNIT STANDARD: 

Demonstrate an understanding of the principal mineral groups and their characteristics 
SAQA US ID UNIT STANDARD TITLE
254501  Demonstrate an understanding of the principal mineral groups and their characteristics 
ORIGINATOR
SGB Mining and Minerals 
PRIMARY OR DELEGATED QUALITY ASSURANCE FUNCTIONARY
-  
FIELD SUBFIELD
Field 06 - Manufacturing, Engineering and Technology Fabrication and Extraction 
ABET BAND UNIT STANDARD TYPE PRE-2009 NQF LEVEL NQF LEVEL CREDITS
Undefined  Regular  Level 3  NQF Level 03 
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 for persons who work or intend to work within a mining and minerals context. Persons credited with this unit standard are able to:
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the principle mineral groups and common rock forming minerals.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the characteristics of the principle mineral groups and common rock forming minerals.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the rocks which the rock forming minerals combine to form.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the uses and economic importance of the rock forming minerals. 

  • 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 2.
  • Chemistry at NQF Level 2. 

  • UNIT STANDARD RANGE 
    N/A 

    Specific Outcomes and Assessment Criteria: 

    SPECIFIC OUTCOME 1 
    Demonstrate an understanding of the principal mineral groups and common rock forming minerals. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
    The principal mineral groups are identified and defined in the mining context. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
    Must include:
  • Silicates.
  • Sulphides.
  • Carbonates.
  • Oxides.
     

  • ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
    The principal mineral families within the silicate group are identified and defined in the mining context. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
    Must include:
  • Quartz.
  • Feldspar.
  • Olivine.
  • Pyroxene.
  • Amphibole.
  • Mica.
     

  • ASSESSMENT CRITERION 3 
    The principal minerals within the sulphide group are identified and defined in the mining context. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
    Must include:
  • Pyrite.
  • Galena.
  • Chalcopyrite.
     

  • ASSESSMENT CRITERION 4 
    The principal minerals within the carbonate group are identified and defined in the mining context. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
    Must include:
  • Dolomite.
  • Calcite.
     

  • ASSESSMENT CRITERION 5 
    The principal minerals within the oxide group are identified and defined in the mining context. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
    Must include:
  • Magnetite.
  • Haematite.
     

  • SPECIFIC OUTCOME 2 
    Demonstrate an understanding of the characteristics of the principle mineral groups and common rock forming minerals. 
    OUTCOME NOTES 
    Mineral Characteristics are the individual features that when combined serve to define a unique mineral. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
    The typical characteristics used to describe minerals are identified and defined in the mining context. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
    Must include:
  • Colour.
  • Streak.
  • Hardness.
  • Cleavage.
  • Fracture.
  • Lustre.
  • Reaction to HCl.
  • Magnetism.
  • Specific gravity.
     

  • ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
    The typical characteristics of the principal mineral families within the silicate group are identified and defined in the mining context. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
    Must include:
  • Quartz.
  • Feldspar.
  • Olivine.
  • Pyroxene.
  • Amphibole.
  • Mica.
     

  • ASSESSMENT CRITERION 3 
    The typical characteristics of the principal minerals within the sulphide group are identified and defined in the mining context. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
    Must include:
  • Pyrite.
  • Galena.
  • Chalcopyrite.
     

  • ASSESSMENT CRITERION 4 
    The typical characteristics of the principal minerals within the carbonate group are identified and defined in the mining context. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
    Must include:
  • Dolomite.
  • Calcite.
     

  • ASSESSMENT CRITERION 5 
    The typical characteristics of the principal minerals within the oxide group are identified and defined in the mining context. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
    Must include:
  • Magnetite.
  • Haematite.
     

  • SPECIFIC OUTCOME 3 
    Demonstrate an understanding of the rocks which the rock forming minerals combine to form. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
    The principal rock groups are identified and defined in the mining context. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
    Must include:
  • Sedimentary rocks
  • Igneous rocks.
  • Metamorphic rocks.
     

  • ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
    The rocks which consist primarily of the silicate group of minerals are identified and defined in the mining context. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
    Must include:
  • Sedimentary rocks.
  • Igneous rocks.
  • Metamorphic rocks.
     

  • ASSESSMENT CRITERION 3 
    The principle rocks within which the sulphide group of minerals occur are identified and defined in the mining context. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
    Must include:
  • Sedimentary rocks.
  • Igneous rocks.
  • Metamorphic rocks.
     

  • ASSESSMENT CRITERION 4 
    The rocks which consist primarily of the carbonate group of minerals are identified and defined in the mining context. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
    Must include:
  • Sedimentary rocks.
  • Igneous rocks.
  • Metamorphic rocks.
     

  • ASSESSMENT CRITERION 5 
    The rocks which consist primarily of the oxide group of minerals are identified and defined in the mining context. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
    Must include:
  • Sedimentary rocks.
  • Igneous rocks.
  • Metamorphic rocks.
     

  • SPECIFIC OUTCOME 4 
    Demonstrate an understanding of the uses and economic importance of the rock forming minerals. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
    The principal uses and the economic importance of the mineral families within the silicate group are identified and defined in the mining context. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
    Must include:
  • Quartz.
  • Feldspar.
  • Mica.
     

  • ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
    The principal uses and the economic importance of the minerals within the sulphide group are identified and defined in the mining context. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
    Must include:
  • Pyrite.
  • Galena.
  • Chalcopyrite.
     

  • ASSESSMENT CRITERION 3 
    The principal uses and the economic importance of the minerals within the carbonate group are identified and defined in the mining context. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
    Must include:
  • Dolomite.
  • Calcite.
     

  • ASSESSMENT CRITERION 4 
    The principal uses and the economic importance of the minerals within the oxide group are identified and defined in the mining context. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
    Must include:
  • Magnetite.
  • Haematite.
     


  • UNIT STANDARD ACCREDITATION AND MODERATION OPTIONS 
    The following accreditation and/or moderation options are available to an individual wishing to be assessed:
  • Anyone assessing a learner or moderating the assessment of a learner against the qualification must be registered as an assessor with the relevant Education, Training, Quality, Assurance (ETQA) Body, or with an ETQA that has a Memorandum of Understanding with the relevant ETQA.
  • Any institution offering learning that will enable the achievement of this qualification must be accredited as a provider with the relevant Education, Training, Quality, Assurance (ETQA) Body, or with an ETQA that has a Memorandum of Understanding with the relevant ETQA.
  • Assessment and moderation of assessment will be overseen by the relevant Education, Training, Quality, Assurance (ETQA) Body, or by an ETQA that has a Memorandum of Understanding with the relevant ETQA, according to the ETQA's policies and guidelines for assessment and moderation.
  • Moderation must include both internal and external moderation of assessments, unless ETQA policies specify otherwise. Moderation should also encompass achievement of the competence described in the associated unit standards.
  • Anyone wishing to be assessed against this qualification may apply to be assessed by any assessment agency, assessor or provider institution that is accredited by the relevant ETQA.
  • Guidelines and the agreed ETQA procedures. 

  • UNIT STANDARD ESSENTIAL EMBEDDED KNOWLEDGE 
    The following embedded knowledge is addressed in an integrated way in the unit standard:
  • The physical characteristics of the principle mineral groups and common rock forming minerals.
  • The rocks which the rock forming minerals combine to form.
  • The uses and economic importance of the rock forming minerals. 

  • UNIT STANDARD DEVELOPMENTAL OUTCOME 
    N/A 

    UNIT STANDARD LINKAGES 
    N/A 


    Critical Cross-field Outcomes (CCFO): 

    UNIT STANDARD CCFO IDENTIFYING 
    Identify and solve problems and make decisions using critical and creative thinking.
  • Note: The ability of the candidate to identify characteristics of individual minerals contributes to his/her problem solving ability. 

  • UNIT STANDARD CCFO ORGANISING 
    Organise and manage themselves and their activities responsibly and effectively.
  • Note: The ability of the candidate to integrate the geological and mineralogical data indicates that the candidate can organise and manage activities. 

  • UNIT STANDARD CCFO COLLECTING 
    Collect, analyse, organise and critically evaluate information.
  • Note: The ability of the candidate to integrate geological data will enhance the learners proficiency to collect, analyse, organise and evaluate information. 

  • UNIT STANDARD CCFO COMMUNICATING 
    Communicate effectively, using visual, mathematical and/or language skills in the modes of oral and/or written presentations.
  • Note: The ability of the candidate to reconcile the data from various sources will indicate the candidate's proficiency in effective communication. 

  • UNIT STANDARD CCFO SCIENCE 
    Use science and technology effectively and critically showing responsibility towards the environment and health of others.
  • Note: The analysis of the geological data pertaining to the various minerals described will indicate the candidates understanding of science and technology. 

  • UNIT STANDARD CCFO DEMONSTRATING 
    Demonstrate an understanding of the world as a set of related systems by recognising that problem-solving contexts do not exist in isolation.
  • Note: The ability of the candidate to understand the physical properties of individual minerals, their relationship to rock groups and their economic importance will contribute to their understanding of the whole world. 

  • 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 
    Terminology:

    Specified Requirements:

    Specified requirements include legal and site specific requirements and are contained in one or more of the following documents:

    Legal:
  • Relevant Acts: e.g. Mine Health & Safety Act and Regulations, 1996 (Act no 29/1996), and Minerals Act and Regulations, 1991 (Act no 50/1991).
  • Mandatory Codes of Practice.
  • SANS and other relevant Standards.
  • Chief Inspector of Mines' Directives and instructions.
  • Guidelines issued by the Chief Inspector of Mines.

    Site Specific:
  • Training manuals.
  • Education manuals, including geological text books.
  • Geological illustrations.

    Mineral characteristics are the individual features that when combined serve to define a unique mineral. 

  • QUALIFICATIONS UTILISING THIS UNIT STANDARD: 
      ID QUALIFICATION TITLE PRE-2009 NQF LEVEL NQF LEVEL STATUS END DATE PRIMARY OR DELEGATED QA FUNCTIONARY
    Core  60349   National Certificate: Mining Technical Support  Level 2  NQF Level 02  Reregistered  2023-06-30  MQA 
    Elective  64909   National Certificate: Small Scale Mining  Level 2  NQF Level 02  Reregistered  2023-06-30  MQA 


    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.
     
    1. CADDIS TRADING CC 
    2. MATHOME TRAINING AND DEVELOPMENT (PTY) LTD 
    3. PALABORA COPPER (PTY) LTD 



    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.