A Specialist Field Guide should be able to point out and explain in terms of scientific theory and cultural belief, the features of the natural environment in which s/he is operating, and putting it into broader ecological context.
As a general indication, the knowledge and insight expected at this level is unlikely to be obtained without at least two years of active guiding in the field. A general distinction between the competence at this level as opposed to lower levels is the ability to explain phenomena by means of valid and well-motivated scientific theories and the concomitant use of appropriate scientific terminology. The Specialist Field Guide will need to know all the information contained in the Field Guide (NQF2) and Advanced Field Guide (NQF4) syllabus as well as the information in this Specialist Field Guide syllabus.
The Specialist Field Guide is also expected to be able to discuss current conservation and sustainable tourism issues from within the existing socio-political framework of Southern Africa and the broader African continent.
The following book is compulsory:
Van As, J. & du Preez, J & Brown, L & Smit, N. 2012. The Story of Life and the Environment, an African perspective. Struik Nature publishers. Cape Town