Which Marine Radio Course is for me?

First of all let us explain the difference between the Online Marine Radio Course and the Complete Marine Radio Course.

Basically it comes down to where you live as the final process requires a face-to-face examination and the presentation of a passport photo.

The Online Marine Radio Course

If you live outside of the Sydney, Newcastle, Hunter, Lower Hunter, Illawarra, Port Stephens and Central Coast areas of NSW then you should enrol in the Online Marine Radio Course. You can enrol in this course at any time and this will give you:

  1. A FREE downloaded version of the Marine Radio Handbook and/or the VHF Radio Handbook,
  2. Access to our training material related to Marine Radios,
  3. Access to over 300 questions of a similiar nature to the final exam and
  4. Access to our Senior Trainer/Radio Invigilator (Examiner) via phone and email.
  5. The cost for this course is $59.00.

All Hands on Deck Maritime Training introduced the Online Marine Radio Course in Mid 2011 and it has proven to be hugely successful and popular as it allows candidates to study online for the Marine Radio Certificate exam regardless of where you live in Australia with the added advantage of access to our Inviglator.

The Complete Marine Radio Course

If you live in the Sydney, Newcastle, Hunter, Lower Hunter, Illawarra, Port Stephens and Central Coast areas of NSW then you should enrol in the Complete Marine Radio Course consisting of:

  1. The online course component,
  2. A FREE downloaded version of the Marine Radio Handbook and/or the VHF Radio Handbook,
  3. Access to over 300 questions of a similiar nature to the final exam,
  4. Access to our Senior Trainer/Radio Invigilator (Examiner) via phone and email.
  5. A 2 hour face-to-face revision process
  6. Sitting of the final written examination which consist of 50 questions - closed book. (examinations are conducted weekly).
  7. The cost for this course is $225.00 inclusive of the exam fee ($59.00) which is paid to the Office of Maritime Coummications.

Types of Marine Radio Certificates

There are essentially 2 types of certificates:

  1. The Marine Radio Operators Certificate of Proficiency (MROCP) incorporates knowledge of both Medium Frequency/High Frequency (MF/HF) Radios, which are designed for long range transmission, and VHF radios and
  2. The Marine Radio Operators VHF Certificate of Proficiency (MROVCP) which is designed for those who are only carrying and/or operating a Very High Frequency (VHF) (Short Range) radio.

Basically if you intend travelling more than 40 miles from the coast, or applying for a commercial qualification such as a Coxswain or Master V certificates, you should obtain an MROCP Certificate.

If you are operating in the harbours and bays or staying near the coast then an MROVCP Certificate will be sufficient.

NOTE: We do not receive many applications for the MROVCP (VHF Only) and we do not generally recommend applicants obtain this certificate. The simple reason is the cost to obtain the 2 certificates is the same.

However the difficulty is if you wish to upgrade. In the past we have had persons with VHF Radio only certificates who have sought to upgrade to the MROCP due to a number of reasons (required on a yacht in an offical yacht race or to obtain a commercial certificate etc) and unfortunately the OMC do not have an upgrade process. You simple have to do it all again with all the time and costs involved.

Regardless of which certificate you wish to apply for if you are a Boat Owner and you wish to upgrade your MF/HF or VHF Radio to a Digital Selective Calling (DSC) Radio, which is the preferred type of radio to carry, you will not be able to complete the radio registration process with the Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) and obtain a Marine Mobile Service Identity (MMSI) number for the radio unless you obtain your Marine Radio Certificate first.

Knowledge Required to obtain a Marine Radio Certificate

The level of knowledge required to pass the exam (70% pass required) includes the following subjects:

  • Knowledge of MF/HF and VHF marine radios
  • Identify the difference between Ship Stations, Coast Radio Stations and Limited Coast Stations
  • Understand and use the 'Phonetic Alphabet'
  • Use correct operating procedures and channels when operating a marine radio
  • Understand Distress, Urgency and Safety Communications
  • Understand Digital Selective Calling (DSC) Communications
  • Understand the use of 406 MHz EPIRBS
  • Understand the use of SART's
  • Understand Search and Rescue in Australia
  • dentify the different types of radio equipment, their application and limitations
  • Identify the components of a marine radio and the care and maintenance required with radio equipment and power sources

On Completion of the Online Study

The final process to obtain your MROCP or MROVCP certificate is for all candidates to sit a closed book multiple choice 50 question exam in the presence of a registered Invigilator.

An Invigilator is appointed by the The Office of Maritime Communications and Invigilators are located around the country. If you enrol in the online course only there will be additional costs to pay for the final MROCP or MROVCP exam (currently $59.00) and the Invigilators fee.

If you enrol in the Complete Marine Radio Course there are no additional costs.

An Invigilator's job is to organise the exam papers, ensure the exam is conducted in accordance with the guidelines, and send off the completed exam and fee for marking and processing.

An Invigilator does not mark the exam, but will seal it and send it to the Office of Maritime Communications for marking. The required pass mark is 70%. - 35 correct questions.

Advantages of Online Study

Candidates who pass, will be sent their Certificate of Proficiency which is plactic card type certificate. (Note: Our own Invigilator is currently acheiving 100% results for candidates obtaining their licence on the 1st attempt!!)

Candidates who do not pass will be sent their results. A person can undertake the exam as many times as needed, upon payment each time of the $59.00 exam fee and Invigilator fee.

That's why the online course is so beneficial. It provides you with the opportunity of unlimited study and practise with the online exam questions and access to our Invigiltor with any questions you may have. This ensures you have the best possible opportunity of passing the exam 1st time and avoiding additional costs, and time, for re-sitting. We have heard of situations of people re-sitting 3 to 4 times.

How long will it take to obtain a Marine Radio Operators Certificate?

We estimate that to complete he Online component will take approximately 5 hours of self study. The online assignments are open book and take between 4 to 10 minutes each to complete.

When the assignments are completed you will receive an email response advising you of sections that need to be reviewed. When candidates are consistently acheiving 80-85% in the online assignments then we recommend sitting for the final face-to-face 'closed book' examination. This takes about 2 hours.

When the final 50 question multiple choice examination has been completed it is forwarded to the OMC for checking. This is the longest part of the process as it can take a week to get a result back.

How long does a Marine Radio Operators Certificate last?

The Marine Radio Operators Certificate is one of those rare certificates that when obtained has no expiry date and there are no renewal fees!