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Diploma in Small Craft Surveying

Aimed specifically at surveyors of small commercial and leisure vessels - training course by distance learning

Starts 20 April 2021

Delivered by tutored distance learning

During the course you will study the following modules:


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Introduction to Small Craft Surveying

Learning Outcomes:

  • Define a small craft
  • Identify the characteristics of a small craft
  • Identify what parties are involved in the small craft industry
  • Know what regulatory bodies and organisations are involved in the small craft industry
  • Identify small craft types.
  • Introduction to the maritime small craft industry (*define what a small craft is and when it is pleasure, or commercial / commercial recreational craft, number of small boats / work boats)
  • Introduction to Parties involved in the small craft sector
  • Types of contracts
  • Regulatory & Statutory bodies and Organisations
    • Safety Of Life At Sea (SOLAS)
    • International Maritime Organization (IMO)
      • Structure
      • MGN
      • MSN
      • MEPC
    • International Maritime Labour Convention (MLC)
    • International Labour Organisation (ILO)
    • SCMS Society Consulting Marine Engineers & Ship Surveyors
    • YBDSA: The Yacht Brokers, Designers and Surveyors Association
    • RYA
    • Overseas (America, Australia, Europe, Middle East, Far East & Africa)
    • Classification Societies
    • Port State Control (PSC)
    • International Safety Management (ISM) Code
    • Flag State
    • Coastal State
    • Inland waterways (Examples for Germany France Australia and UK)
    • Charitable bodies
  • Small Craft Service types


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Naval Architecture for Small Craft

Learning Outcomes:

  • Understand the term “Naval Architecture”
  • Identify the extent of involvement with Naval Architecture expected of a Small Craft Surveyor
  • Explain why knowledge of Naval Architecture is important to the Small Craft Surveyor
  • Introduction to small craft naval architecture
  • Small Craft types
    • Mono-hull
    • Multi-hull
    • Materials
    • High-speed craft
    • Light ships
  • Areas of operation (UK Chart only )
  • Basic buoyancy & stability introduction 
  • Strength-giving structural components
  • Principal dimensions
    • Frame numbering
    • Scantlings
    • LOA, LBP, Load Line Length, Registered Length
    • Gross tonnage, Net tonnage, Dead weight,
    • Displacement
  • Primary and secondary Small Craft structures 
  • External coatings
  • Watertight and weathertight integrity
  • Supporting structure for deck equipment
  • Engine power curves and propulsion curves
  • Rudder designs and Types


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Small Craft Engineering & Systems

Learning Outcomes:

  • Explain why design review is an important aspect of marine engineering
  • Identify and discuss the main components of an engine
  • Explain the design of, and fittings included in, a compressed air system
  • Discuss fuel tank filling and venting arrangements
  • Explain why lubrication oil systems on small craft are seldom complex
  • Introduction to small craft engineering
  • Types of engines and components
  • Water Heaters / Boilers 
  • Compressed Air System
  • Fuels and fuel systems
  • Lubricants and lubricating systems
  • Cargo Systems
  • Ballast System (emergency systems throughout)
  • Bilge Systems (emergency systems throughout)
  • Exhaust systems
  • Domestic systems
  • Electrical and lighting systems (emergency systems throughout)
  • Design review and equipment approval
  • Fire Fighting systems (emergency systems throughout)
  • Steering Systems (emergency systems throughout)
  • Propulsion systems (emergency systems throughout)
  • Communication systems (emergency systems throughout)
  • Refrigeration, air conditioning and ventilation
  • ISO standard requirements (ISO standards Kitemark & Wheel Mark)
  • Deck machinery and equipment
  • Starting systems (*air, Batteries and hand)
  • Controls & Monitoring systems (rev counters remote gauges etc…)


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Stability of Small Craft

Learning Outcomes:

  • Explain the concept of stability in small craft
  • Understand the effects of weather / sea state & wind on stability
  • Discuss stability at dry docking and undockings
  • Introduction of stability and buoyancy of small Craft
  • Intact stability
  • Damage stability
  • Survivability
  • Stability book
  • Down flooding angles
  • Stability criteria including free surface effect
  • None-approved Modification
  • Inclining experiments (*IACS Recommendation 31)
  • Freeboard and Draught
  • Load line assignment
  • Metacentric height
  • VCOG
  • LCOB
  • VCOB
  • GZ
  • KM / KB
  • Effects of cargo
  • Effects of weather / sea state & wind (*sail effect)
  • Stability at dry docking and undocking (* on/off blocks)


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Small Craft Surveys and Repairs

Learning Outcomes:

  • Describe the role of the small craft surveyor
  • Understand the various surveys available (e.g. towing surveys, condition surveys, coating surveys)
  • Explain the difference between approved modifications & non-approved modifications
  • Role of the small craft surveyor
    • Difference between a survey, inspection, auditing and consulting
  • Use of third parties during survey
  • Types of surveys
    • Documentation reviews 
    • Pre-purchase
    • Damage surveys
    • Fitness for purpose
    • Insurance policy surveys
    • Towing surveys
    • Condition surveys
    • Hull structure including bottom
    • New construction surveys
    • Machinery surveys
    • Class Surveys
    • Equipment surveys
    • Coating surveys ((* good, fair & poor defections (light ships)) External / Internal Coatings)
    • Pollution prevention (Waste management section of survey)
    • Life Saving appliances surveys
    • Specialist: Radio installation survey, compass, NDT, destructive testing
    • Code of practice surveys
    • Assisting accident investigators
  • Common areas to check (*damage examples)
  • Regulations
    • Minimum manning requirements
    • Mandatory equipment
  • Approved Modifications & Non-Approved Modifications
  • Deck equipment


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Survey Management and Reporting

Learning Outcomes:

  • Understand how to prepare for a survey and know what information to gather beforehand
  • Explain how to conduct a survey
  • Discuss how to write an effective survey report
  • Preparing for a survey
    • Information to gather before a survey
      • Location
        • Drydock / afloat
      • Hazards (*Including confined space but talk about under safety)
      • Visas / Travels & Health arrangements
      • Dock security clearance (ISPS)
      • Ship Security clearance (ISPS)
      • Who are you working for
      • Agents
      • Responsibility for safety
      • Understanding trading arrangements
      • Third parties entitled to information / confederal clauses / legally privileged information (More under surveyors and Law)
      • Other agencies including Class & PSC etc.
    • Terms & Conditions
  • Parties involved
  • How to conduct a survey
    • Opening meetings /closing meetings
    • Threats
    • Bribes
    • Interacting with crew members / owner representatives
    • Suspending refusing and abandoning a survey
    • What to do if you find observations and deficiencies & raising recommendation 
  • Report writing
    • Presentation
    • Style
    • Technology
    • Disclosure, non-disclosure
    • Negligence
    • Prejudice and non-prejudice reports
    • Scrutiny and cross examination
    • Clients influence of reports
  • Survey Equipment & Usage (*PPE to point to safety of surveyors)


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Health & Safety for Surveyors

Learning Outcomes:

  • Explain who has responsibility for surveyor’s safety and understand the issue of
  • Learn how to carry out risk assessments
  • Explore the various health and safety issues in surveying e.g. confined spaces, working at height, ship-to-ship transfer
  • Maritime safety introduction
  • Responsibility for surveyor’s safety / transfer of responsibility
  • PPE
  • Safety on the dock / Port and other work areas
  • Working at Heights (*IACS Recommendation 78 & 136)
  • Working over water
  • Confined space entry (*IACS Procedural Requirement R No.37 and Recommendation 72 )
  • Hazardous materials including asbestos (*IACS Recommendation 130)
  • Shock / electrical
  • Overhead cables
  • Movable objects
  • Risk assessments (*IACS Recommendation 141 & 127)
  • Dangerous cargo
  • Engulfment
  • Slips trips and falls
  • Vibration (*IACS Recommendation 132)
  • Noise
  • Dock side traffic
  • Lifted cargo / dropped objects
  • Environment / weather, extremes of heat and cold
  • Unsafe access
  • Rotating machinery
  • Pressurised systems
  • Fumes
  • Aggression
  • Ship to ship transfer (*IACS Recommendation 134)
  • Working with equipment under test
  • Sea trial
  • Use of small boats / rafts for survey (*IACS Recommendation 39)


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Marine Law relating to Surveying & Surveyors

Learning Outcomes:

  • Understand the influences of international regulations on national law

  • Know how regulations are enforced  

  • Enforcement of international regulations

  • Discuss the relationship of the surveyor with the legal profession

  • Surveyor's Terms & Conditions
  • Influences of international regulations on national laws
  • Enforcement of international regulations
  • Intervention by law enforcement agencies / solicitors and courts
  • The relationship of the surveyor with the legal profession


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Marine Insurance for Surveyors

Learning Outcomes:

  • Understand the role P&I clubs play in marine insurance
  • Explain how third party liability insurance works in practise
  • Discuss how to deal with claim disputes
  • P & I Clubs
  • H & M Clubs
  • Insurance companies
  • Re-insurance companies
  • Professional indemnity insurance for surveyors
  • Third party liability insurance
  • Employers liability insurance
  • Other insurances
  • UK Insurance Act 2015 
  • Dealing with insurance claims for a client
  • Dealing with claim disputes (*latest Northern damage to dock / case study)


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Business Skills for the Surveyor

Learning Outcomes:

  • Understand the various types of marketing used in business
  • Explore the role quality management plays in business
  • Discuss how to write an effective business plan
  • Setting up a business introduction
  • Understanding the differences between different types of companies and organisations
  • Marketing
    • Target audience
    • Types of Marketing
      • Traditional publications
      • Electronic
      • Online web presence and social media
      • Search Engines
      • Monitoring
      • Person to person / business to business
      • Campaigns
  • Business plan
    • Assets
    • Personnel
    • Finances
    • Short-term planning / long-term planning
  • Tax (*corporation tax, VAT etc. in different countries)
  • Registering for VAT or CIF / Tax equivalent in various countries (*America, France, Netherlands, UK Australia 
  • International banking
  • Quality management systems
  • Time management
  • Available assistance (*Grants / DTI Exporting Advice)
  • Communication


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Inland Waterways and Canal Craft

Learning Outcomes:

  • Analyse the application of the rules, codes and directives for inland waterway and canal craft
  • Identify the construction and materials used
  • Explain the gas systems and ventilation used on inland waterways and canal craft
  • Regulations
  • Initial details
    • Craft details
    • Craft type
    • Survey location and conditions
    • Craft history
  • Construction and materials
  • Areas of anticipated hull and stern gear problems
  • Safety equipment
  • Machinery spaces
  • Fuel systems and storage
  • Fresh water and heating systems
  • Sewage disposal arrangements
  • Mooring equipment
  • Control systems
  • Gas systems and ventilation


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Power Leisure and Sail Leisure Vessels

Learning Outcomes:

  • Describe the procedures for preparing and carrying out a survey of power and sail leisure vessels
  • Describe how a surveyor should conduct a survey for each of the types of hull structure
  • Evaluate how a damage survey should be conducted
  • How a survey is carried out
  • The practical work of surveying
  • Setting up a survey
  • Construction materials
  • Dismantling and opening up for a survey
  • The hull
  • The deck and deck fittings
  • Interior components
  • Machinery
  • Spars, rigging and sails
  • Dinghies
  • Problems and common mistakes
  • Helpful hints
  • Illustrations of defects found when surveying
  • Types of surveys
  • Damage of surveys


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Fishing Vessels

Learning Outcomes:

  • Describe the rules, codes and directives that apply fishing vessels including work equipment regulations
  • Identify the different hull structure for fishing vessels
  • Analyse how regulations relating to lifting gear apply to fishing vessels
  • Describe the piping arrangements on fishing vessels
  • Construction and materials
  • Fishing methods
  • Regulations
  • Health and safety
  • Risk assessment
  • Lifting operations and lifting equipment
  • Work equipment
  • Pipe work
  • Noise, vibration, carcinogenics and mutagens and working height


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Small Commercial Craft

Learning Outcomes:

  • Analyse the construction and materials used on small commercial craft
  • Describe the various vessel types and the uses that fall into the category of small commercial craft
  • Identify the propulsion, machinery, mooring and safety equipment used on small commercial craft
  • Describe the requirements for the carriage of dangerous goods
  • Construction
  • Special purpose vessels (tugs, pollution control, pilot vessels etc.)
  • Health and safety
  • Lifting and towing gear
  • Standards
  • Fire insulation and fire fighting equipment
  • Safety equipment
  • Survey regimes
  • Areas of operation
  • Dangerous goods
  • Materials
  • Propulsion

A broad and comprehensive range of core modules coupled with a detailed specialist module makes this course ideally suited to the aspiring small craft surveyor."

G Freeman,