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Complete Merchant Navy Training for New Starters and Professional Seafarers Approved by MNTB and MCA & STCW Compliant at STC South Shields Marine School

south shields marine school

Established in 1861, South Shields Marine School offers programs across the whole spectrum of marine education and nautical sciences, including navigation, operations, marine and electrical engineering, communications and catering. South Shields Marine School is part of South Tyneside College (STC) and offers part-time and full-time courses for both young students and adults alike.

The school is one of the largest MCA approved merchant navy training colleges in the United Kingdom, and attracts students from all over the world. The marine school has MNTB approved training programs in place covering its new entrant training provision, along with maritime and coastguard agency (MCA) approval for regulatory seafarer training.

South Shields Marine School at South Tyneside College cater for all levels of education and training from Deck, Engine and ET Rating, maritime apprenticeships, all officer trainee programs through to Senior Officer Certification and up top honours degree level. They also provide an extensive range of short courses for the marine, offshore and leisure markets. The education and training offer is backed up by an extensive range of resources that enables us to meet all training needs including STCW at South Shields Marine School and the Marine and Offshore Safety Training Centre (MOST).

South Tyneside College conducts training approved by Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) and the foundation programs are awarded by University of Sunderland.

south tyneside college campus

Merchant Navy Training Programs

New Starters - Pre Cadetship


  • The Marine Pre-Cadetship is offered in both engineering and nautical (deck) pathways. This program is intended for those eventually seeking a cadetship with a sponsoring company but who have yet to be successful in securing a place. There are different programs available:
  • Level 2 Pre-Cadetship (Diploma in Engineering) (1 year)
  • Level 3 Pre-Cadetship (Diploma in Shipping and Maritime Operations) (1 year)

Undergraduate Programs (Deck Cadetship)

  • Foundation Degree in Marine Operations (3 to 3.5 years Sandwich): The program includes the technical and managerial knowledge and skills required by Officers, who are members of a ship’s bridge and cargo operations teams. The work based opportunities are provided by the company sponsor and lead to the mandatory industrial sea experience. Further periods of sea service and study lead to the award of the MCA Chief Mate Certificate of Competence, qualifying the holder to serve as Master of a merchant vessel.
  • Higher National Certificate or Diploma (HNC/HND) Nautical Science (3 to 3.5 years Sandwich): The course forms the principal academic component of the Deck Cadetship program. The qualification allows students to claim exemptions from the Maritime and Coastguard Agency’s professional deck examinations and qualifies them to progress on to degree level programs. Sponsorship is available with a shipping company, who will provide you with on-board work based learning opportunities

Undergraduate Programs (Engineering Cadetship)

  • Foundation Degree in Marine Engineering (3 years Full-Time Sandwich): This program is devised to provide the technical and managerial skills required by Ships’ Officers. The work based opportunities are provided by the company sponsor and lead to the mandatory industrial sea experience. On successful completion of a cadetship, progression to certification of Second and Chief Engineering Officer will follow further training.
  • Higher National Certificate or Diploma (HNC/D) Marine Engineering (3 to 3.5 years Sandwich): The course forms the principal academic component of the Marine Engineer Cadetship program. The HND qualification gives students exemptions from the MCA professional marine engineer’s examinations and qualifies them to progress on to degree level programs. Sponsorship is available with a shipping company, which will provide students with on-board work based learning opportunities. On successful completion of a cadetship one can progression to certification of Second and Chief Engineering Officer.

Undergraduate Programs (ETO Cadetship)

  • Foundation Degree in Marine Electrical (3 years Sandwich): This course provides the knowledge and skills required to undertake a career on board as Electro-Technical Officer. Work based opportunities are provided by the company sponsor and give on-board work based learning and the mandatory industrial sea experience. Graduates gain their ETO Certificate of Competency.

Bachelor Degree Programs

  • B.Sc (Hons) in Marine Operations (1 year full-time Top-up): This program develops further the knowledge and understanding of topics raised in the HND or Foundation Degree in Marine Operations. On successful completion, students would usually gain suitable professional shore based employment.
  • B.Eng (Hons) Marine Engineering (1 year full-time Top-up): This program develops further the knowledge and understanding of topics raised on the HND or Foundation Degree in Marine Engineering or Chief Engineer Certificate of Competency. On successful completion, students would usually gain suitable shore based employment.
  • Entry Requirements: Those who have successfully completed Foundation Degree or HND programs can progress on the BSc or BEng programs.

Marine Apprenticeships (Deck)

  • Able Seafarer Deck: The training for an able seafarer will need to include a period of time being taught basic practical seafarer and watchkeeping skills and related underpinning knowledge and theory, interspersed with application of these skills during onboard practice and to comply with international and national sea time requirements. Coupled with required periods of leave, it is expected that minimum completion time of the apprenticeship will be around 18-24 months (including sea time).

Marine Apprenticeships (Port)

  • Marine Pilot: Marine Pilot has responsibility for the safe navigational conduct of a vessel throughout its passage from sea to berth or berth to sea. This apprenticeship will require rigorous and substantial training, typically of around 30-36 months, depending on experience at entry.
  • Port Marine Operations Officer: The port marine operations team assists in ensuring the safe transit and handling of vessels into and out of the port. This apprenticeship will require rigorous and substantial training, typically of around 24-30 months, depending on experience and qualifications at entry.

Certificates of Competency (CoC Deck)

  • Chief Mate Orals Resit Prep
  • Chief Mate SQA Revision (4 Weeks)
  • Chief Mate/Master Limited Orals D
  • Chief Mates (Post Foundation Degree route) STCW AII/2
  • GMDSS General Operator
  • Masters (Orals Only)
  • Navigation Aids, Equipment and Simulator Training (NAEST) - Management Level (MCA Approved)
  • Navigation Aids, Equipment and Simulator Training (NAEST) - Operational Level (MCA Approved)
  • Officer of the Watch (OOW) - Rating to Officer
  • Operational use of ECDIS (MCA Approved)
  • Small Ships Navigation and Radar
  • SQA Chief Mate Blended Learning
  • SQA Chief Mate HND Nautical Science
  • SQA Chief Mate HND Nautical Science (DLP)

Certificates of Competency (CoC Engine)

  • Certificate of Competency - Management Level III/2
  • Certificate of Competency - Management Level III/2 - Engineering Knowledge Only
  • MCA Engineering Officer of the Watch III/1

Certificates of Competency (CoC ETO)

  • Electro Technology Tutorial
  • Marine Control and Instrumentation
  • Marine Hazardous Areas
  • Short Courses for Experienced Electro Technical Officer Certificate of Competency: ETO CoC

Certificates of Competency (Leadership and Management)

  • HELM Management
  • HELM Operational
  • HELM(M) Simulator Training

Certificates of Competency (Tanker)

  • Advanced Chemical Tanker Cargo Operations (MCA Approved)
  • Advanced Gas Tanker Training (MCA Approved)
  • Advanced Oil Tanker Cargo Operations (MCA Approved)
  • Basic Tanker Safety for oil, chemical and gas tanker operations – External

Professional Development Courses (Deck)

  • Advanced training for service on ships operating in polar waters - MCA Approved
  • Basic training for service on ships operating in polar waters
  • BSc Marine Operations (top-up)
  • Navigation Skills Assessment Program
  • Offshore Bridge Simulator
  • Pilot Training and Assessment
  • Ship Handling

Professional Development Courses (Engine)

  • Abrasive Wheels Regulations
  • AMERC Electronic Principles and Applications
  • AMERC Electronic Principles and Applications Distance Learning
  • B Eng (Hons) in Marine Engineering
  • B Eng in Marine Engineering
  • Diesel Electric Propulsion
  • Electro Technology Tutorial
  • Electronic Navigation Equipment Maintenance (ENEM) (MCA Approved)
  • Engine Resource Management
  • GMDSS Radio Maintenance
  • High Voltage Training - Management Level (MCA Approved)
  • Marine Control and Instrumentation
  • Marine Electrical Maintenance
  • Marine Hazardous Areas
  • Marine High Voltage Refresher Course

Professional Development Courses (Leadership and Management)

  • Advanced training for service on ships covered within the IGF code (LNG) - MCA Approved
  • Engine Resource Management
  • HELM Management
  • HELM Operational
  • HELM Wrightway
  • HELM(M) Simulator Training

Professional Development Courses (Tanker)

  • Advanced Chemical Tanker Cargo Operations (MCA Approved)
  • Advanced Gas Tanker Training (MCA Approved)
  • Advanced Oil Tanker Cargo Operations (MCA Approved)
  • Basic Tanker Safety for oil, chemical and gas tanker operations - External
  • Basic Tanker Safety for oil, chemical and gas tanker operations – Internal

Marine Offshore Safety Training (Merchant Navy)

  • STCW Basic Safety Training
  • STCW Advanced Firefighting
  • Designated Security Duties
  • Efficient Deckhand (MCA Approved)
  • Elementary First Aid (EFA) (MCA Approved)
  • Fire Prevention & Fire Fighting
  • MCA Personal Safety & Social Responsibility
  • MCA PSC & RB
  • MCA STCW Medical Care Aboard Ship L4
  • Medical First Aid Onboard Ship (MCA Approved)
  • MNTB Enclosed Space Entry
  • STCW Personal Survival Techniques
  • STCW Proficiency in Security Awareness
  • Ship Security Officer
  • SQA Awd Maritime Studies Watch Deck Rating L2
  • SQA L2 Awd in Maritime Studies
  • Tanker Fire Fighting (5 hour)

Marine Offshore Safety Training (Offshore)

  • Basic Offshore Safety Induction and Emergency Training (BOSIET) with Compressed Air Emergency Breathing System (CA-EBS)
  • Compressed Air Emergency Breathing System
  • Further Offshore Emergency Training (FOET) with Compressed Air Emergency Breathing System (CA-EBS)
  • Minimum Industry Safety Training (MIST)
  • UK Helicopter Underwater Escape Training (HUET) with Compressed Air Emergency Breathing System

Marine Offshore Safety Training (Refresher)

  • STCW Advanced Fire Fighting Refresher (Route 1)
  • STCW Advanced Fire Fighting Refresher (Route 2)
  • Fire Prevention and Fire Fighting, updating training (Refresher Training)
  • MCA STCW Medical Care Refresher L4
  • Personal Survival Techniques updating training (Refresher Training)
  • PSC & RB Refresher (Route 1)
  • PSC & RB Refresher (Route 2)

Vessel Traffic Service (VTS) Courses

  • VTS Induction/Underpinning Knowledge (V-103/1) (VTS Theory)
  • VTS Nautical Knowledge (Module 4 of IALA V-103/1)
  • VTS On-Job Training (OJT) Instructor Course - IALA V-103/4
  • VTS Operators (Simulator) IALA-103/1
  • VTS Radar/ARPA - IALA
  • VTS Refresher - IALA V103/5
  • VTS Supervisor Advancement Training - IALA V-103/2
  • VTS VHF Radio - IALA

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