This course is a requirement for anyone who wants to use a marine VHF DSC radio, it is suitable for experienced boaters as well as novices. It covers both basic marine band VHF operation and Global Maritime Distress and Safety System procedures using Digital Selective Calling. The course can be completed in one of two ways and is followed by an independant examination by an RYA Examiner. The two course formats available to you are:
- Classroom course and classroom examination
- Online course and classroom examination
Classroom course and examination
The classroom course allows you to have maximum hands-on experience. The course runs from 0830hrs to approximately 1630hrs followed by the examination. You will be able to practice procedures using RAYMARINE, SIMRAD and ICOM VHF; DSC and GMDSS equipment fitted with dummy loads in order that they may be operated in the classroom environment. The use of this equipment rather than the computer generated simulators used at some other training establishments enables you to experience hands-on use of the equipment & procedures. These are used throughout the course and examination. Before attending the classroom course we will send you your course pack which will contain a book for you to do some pre-course study, the areas that you need to cover are detailed in the pack.
Online course and classroom examination
This option allows you to complete the course at your own pace at a time to suit you using the RYA Interactive e-learning platform. Once you book your course will send you your course pack and login details for the RYA Interactive site. The RYA Interactive platform will run you through the entire course and used in conjunction with your course pack, should be fairly straight forwards. However, should you have any problems our team are easily contactable by email to answer queries or clear up confusions! Once you have successfully completed the online course you can come to us to complete the examination.
The examination only option is available to students who have one of the following:
- A restricted VHF Operator's Licence
- A UK Aviation radio Operator's Licence
- A pass number from the RYA Interactive e-learning platform course
Provided you hold one of the above you can come to us directly to sit your exam. Please note, however, there is no tuition given with this option - it is purely an examination
Upon receipt of your payment & booking form we will send by return your course pack, including a copy of the RYA publication 'VHF Handbook (G31)'. This book should be studied as preparation for the classroom course or used to help you complete the online course. For the classroom course you will be asked to do some pre-course study from this book.
However you choose to complete the course you will need to bring the following to your exam:
- A passport sized photograph
- An additional licence issue fee of £60 is payable to the RYA on the day by cheque or card.
There is no age limit for doing the VHF DSC radio course, however an authority to operate will not be issued to any person under the age of 16.
A light lunch can be purchased within the main centre or bring your own. Hot drinks are available from our coin operated vending machine.