Boating Essentials

Prerequisite: PCOC

This course covers Operator Card requirements.

Enhance your boating knowledge with the Boating Essentials Course. This comprehensive course provides in-depth boat operation and safety training as well as instruction in navigation, charting and plotting – necessary skills in boating situations when technology fails. Also included is an introduction to electronic navigation.

Topics covered:

— Anchors and anchoring

— Ropes, lines and knots

— Pre-launch checklist

— Skippers responsibilities before setting out/when under way

— Environmental responsibilities

— Towing

— Electrical hazards

— The magnetic compass

— Global positioning

— Navigation

— Marine charts

— Symbols and abbreviations

— Working with paper charts

— Plotting and labelling

— Conning

— Digital chart plotting

— And more …

Boating Basics

The Operators Card Course

This course covers Operator Card requirements.

Boating Essentials

Including PCOC

Prerequisite: none

Get your PCOC card and learn about plotting and navigation.


The Seamanship Course (formerly Piloting) extends the navigation and vessel-handling techniques introduced in the Boating Course. The course presents the three aspects of piloting. 1. Navigation and Plotting Skills: interpretation of charts and chart symbols; the DR plot; bearings; Fixes and running Fixes; determination of course to steer in a current, and determining distance off. 2. Seamanship Skills: understanding the hazards of weather, wind, waves, currents, tides and tidal currents, and how to deal with them. 3. Boat Capabilities and Performance: hull speed, stability, rudders and propellers

Prerequisite: Boating Course

A graduate of the Seamanship Course will have the theoretical knowledge to be able to handle a boat in rough weather, and to deal with emergency situations.

Course Content:
Boating Course subjects are expanded to include Relative Bearings and the Running Fix; effects of current and leeway, and new skills in marlinspike and coastal navigation are learned. Duration: 13 weeks. Course kit includes: Student Notes, Homework Folder, Training Chart “A”.

• Dead Reckoning and the Log
• Marlinespike Seamanship
• The Magnetic Compass
• Fixed Aids to Navigation
• Floating Aids to Navigation
• Bearings and Fixes
• Relative Bearings
• Distance of an Object by Two Relative Bearings
• Weather
• Wind, Waves and Current
• Seamanship Skills for Adverse Weather
• Anchors and Anchoring
• Tides
• Tidal Currents
• Navigating in a Current
• Buoyancy and Stability
• Hull Construction and Shape
• Hull Performance
• Propellers and Propeller Action
• Rudders and Steering
• Mechanisms
• Emergencies
• Preparedness and Enjoyment
• Introduction to Electronic
• Navigation
• Manners and Customs

The Restricted Operator Certificate (Maritime) – ROC(M)

The ROC(M) is a Canadian Federal government issued certificate that allows you to operate a marine VHF radio.
The ROC(M) is required by anyone using a marine VHF radio or other marine radios (each person on the boat who will use the radio needs their own card). There are significant fines if you are found using a VHF or marine radio without your card.
In addition, if you received your ROC(M) card before the new Digital Selective Calling was introduced, then you are encouraged to return and get your DSC endorsement for your ROC card.
All new VHF radios are now being sold with a DSC function that will greatly enhance rescue personnel’s ability to assist you in an emergency. Understanding this technology and how to operate it can, in some circumstances, mean the difference between life and death.

Advanced Piloting

Prerequisite: Piloting or Seamanship

The “Advanced Piloting” course expands on elements of “The Boating Course” and “Piloting”. It demands greater accuracy in positioning and plotting exercises as well as adherence to standardized labeling. Your chart work skills will be developed to standards recognized in the maritime industry.

Course content:

• Charts
• Compass
• Courses, Bearings and Positions
• Electronic Navigation
• Effects of Current and Leeway
• Running Fixes
• Tides and Tidal Currents

Fundamentals Of Weather

Recommended Prerequisite: Boating

Meteorology (the study of weather) is quite technical in nature. In contrast, “Fundamentals of Weather” is presented in a straightforward manner eliminating much of the jargon.
With practice, it will become possible for you to make short term forecasts. Challenge the professionals as to who better predicts the weather in your local area

Junior Navigator

Prerequisite: Advanced Piloting

This is the first of a two-course program of Offshore Navigation for the recreational boater in which students learn about current offshore navigation electronic tools and software as well as conventional route planning techniques. Students also learn traditional celestial navigational skills to determine position, using these techniques to check their electronics and as the backup navigation technique in the event electronics fail.

Subject matter includes:

•Precise time determination
•Use of the Nautical Almanac
•Taking sextant sights of the sun
•Reducing sights to establish lines of position
•Special charts and plotting sheets for offshore navigation
•Offshore navigational routines for recreational craft


Prerequisite: Piloting or Seamanship

After Junior Navigation, this course is the second part of the study of offshore navigation, further developing the student’s understanding of celestial navigation theory. This Navigation 2009 course deals with learning celestial positioning using other bodies, in addition to positioning using the sun (covered in the Junior Navigation course). This course also deals with electronic software tools that can be used to plan and execute an offshore voyage. You will first learn to reduce these sights by the Law of Cosines method. Later in the course, you will learn an additional method of sight reduction, the Nautical Almanac Sight Reduction (NASR) method. You will also learn about sight planning techniques. With that knowledge, you will have the tools to take sights and complete your Navigation Sight Folder. The course includes a chapter on using a software-based voyage planning tool and a navigation program. The final chapter of the course contains a Practice Cruise that ties the separate elements of the course together.

Celestial Navigation

Prerequisite: Advanced Piloting

The practice of celestial navigation involves careful observation of the sun and moon as well as planets and stars. Combining them with centuries-old principles allows a navigator to determine the vessel’s position.

We all want the convenience and accuracy of electronic navigational aids, but a prudent navigator will never attempt a long voyage without the knowledge and skills of celestial navigation. Learn how to guide yourself with the stars if salt water or lightning has damaged your electronic navigation equipment. Let the sky be your guide.

Navigating with GPS

This seminar will introduce you to the versatile Global Positioning System (GPS) receivers. With this course you will learn simple explanations of the system which makes GPS such an effective navigational aid, and methods of extracting the maximum navigational information from your equipment.
Improved position information, course planning and real time speed/direction data improves your boating safety and cruise enjoyment but reduces transit time and fuel consumption.

Marine Maintenance

The full enjoyment of boating includes both the pleasure of using the boat and the satisfaction of properly maintaining it. To many boaters, working on their boat is part of the fun, to say nothing of the savings in costs.

All boats need maintenance to correct for the gradual deterioration from wear and tear, let alone exposure to the elements. A boater should be constantly on the alert for signs of vessel degradation, and make repairs while the problem is minor.

From spark plugs to bottom paint, the Marine Maintenance course covers all the basics for DIY boaters.

Schedule Of Courses

Contact us at for the current classroom schedule