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mca oral prep
Training Consultancy Executive Business & Law Level I Business & Law Level II MCA Master Prep Oral MCA OOW Prep Oral Course Schedule Course Booking

Course Syllabus.
The course syllabus is based upon the MCA requirements for the MCA 200GT (Y). All the subjects are covered in-depth and many to OOW level and beyond. The maximum class size is 7 persons.

Chartwork and Position Determination:
IALA buoyage systems A & B.
Electronic chart and navigation systems.
Radar and ARPA, basic plotting techniques.
Checking techniques of vessel’s position.
Actions in case vessel is off track.
Magnetic variation & deviation, application of.
Plotting a vessel's position on a chart.
Course to steer's and ETA's.
Range transits and clearing marks.
Safe approaches to a harbour/anchorage.
Chart symbols and abbreviations.
Notices to mariners for chart corrections.

Tidal Heights & Currents:
Main port's tidal height predictions.
Secondary port's tidal height predictions.
Calculation of intermediate tidal heights.
Use of a tidal stream atlas.
Chart tidal stream diamond reference points.

Passage Planning & Execution:
Commercial passage planning headings.
Navigational charts & publications.
Admiralty sailing directions.
Admiralty light list.
Admiralty tide tables.
Radio & navigational warnings.

Sources of meteorological information.
Interpretation of weather forecasts.
Different weather systems, knowledge of.
Vessel's meteorological instruments.

Navigational Watch.
Navigational watchkeeping at sea principles.
Watchkeeping at anchor.
The ICS Bridge Procedures Guide.
Bridge equipment, echo sounder & Navtex.
Steering control systems & automatic pilot.
Navigational records.
Master to the bridge, circumstances of.
Navigational watch handing over & relieving.

International Collision Regulations:
A full working knowledge of the Col Regs.
Complete knowledge of rules 1-19.
Complete knowledge of lights & shapes.
Complete knowledge of sound signals.
Recognising a developing collision situation.
Actions to avoid collision by day and night.

Distress Signals and Communications:
Distress situations.
The types of distress signals.
Receiving a distress signal, actions to take.
The obligations to help a distress vessel.
The correct use of pyrotechnics.
Use of EPIRBS and SARTS.
Distress communications procedures.
Mayday, PanPan and Securité messages.
Emergency communications within GMDSS.

Vessel Manoeuvring:
Preparation procedures for getting under way.
Duties prior to proceeding to sea.
Procedures for entering/leaving a harbour.
Berthing procedures alongside quays/jetties.
Berthing procedures alongside a vessel.
Mooring buoy procedures.
Mooring lines and associated equipment.
Helm orders and guiding the vessel.
Propeller effects upon the vessel's helm.
Wind & current effects.
Close quarter manoeuvres.
Bridge control equipment failure, actions.
Emergency steering arrangements.
Anchoring procedures.
Winches and windlass precautions.
Mooring and un-mooring precautions.

Emergency Procedures & Response:
Man overboard procedures & actions.
Actions to take after a collision.
Actions to take after a grounding.
Flood control & procedures.
Major mechanical failure procedures.
Initial damage assessment and control.
Actions against marine environment damage.
Fire prevention procedures.
Use and care of fire-fighting appliances.
Machinery & equipment emergency shutdown.
Fire & safety plans.
Use of breathing apparatus.
Escape procedures.
Lifesaving appliances and equipment.
Launching of life-rafts and rescue boats.
Proper rigging of life-raft HRU's.
Knowledge of the basic principles of survival.

Marine Pollution:
Pollution prevention in port and at sea.
Vessel refuelling pollution prevention.
Response actions to pollution incidents.
Waste management.
Disposal of waste and oil residues.

Vessel Seaworthiness:
The fundamentals of watertight integrity.
Good stability and poor stability differences.
Stability effects of raising/lowering weights.
Low freeboard issues.
Deck freeing arrangements and scuppers.
Slack tanks effects.
Heavy weather preparations.

Business & Law:
The MCA Small Vessels Code.
The MCA Large Yacht Code LY2.
The Code of Safe Working Practices.
Muster stations and drills.
Legal obligations for a seaworthy vessel.
A basic understanding of the laws of salvage.
Safe manning, hours of work & watchkeeping.
Crew agreements.

MCA Master Oral Prep
Master (Y) 200GT STCW coded.



Price: 850,- € + 45,- € admin fees.

Course length: 6 days.
Total lecture/teaching time: 48 hours approx.

The majority of candidates looking to complete an official MCA oral examination choose to do an oral prep week, with the principle objective to make you feel confident when walking into the oral examination. For many candidates, this has been a very successful approach in helping to pass an MCA oral examination.

Previously, many MCA examiners, and surprisingly some of the candidates themselves, felt this approach defeated the whole purpose of the oral examination; which is to check if a candidate has the sufficient level of skills, knowledge and experience to work at the level that the certificate implies.

Recently however, many of the MCA oral examiners have been changing their emphasis. Instead of just asking a question about a subject that has a standard answer; the examiner will go further into the subject and ask more in-depth questions. The idea is to check the real depth of knowledge of a candidate.

The result of all this has been a substantial increase in oral examination failures for first-time candidates. Honesty and sincerity are far more important values for an MCA examiner, than you answering their questions like a parrot.

The frustration for many candidates is that often they have the experience, skills and knowledge for the certification; they just cannot answer some of the questions to the satisfaction of the MCA examiner.

The principle objective of the oral prep week is to solve this problem. This is largely done by helping you develop your communication skills so that you are better able to use your experience and knowledge to answer the MCA examiner's questions as a professional mariner.

The course aims to give you the confidence to express your opinions to the MCA examiner based upon your own experience.

Exams/Completion Requirements:

Entry Requirements:
An MCA recognised entry qualification, to be eligible for the oral examination for the MCA Master 200 GT (Y) STCW coded.
Your Questions?

Why should I do this oral prep course for the MCA oral examination?
Many candidates become nervous in official examinations and often they know the answer but cannot express themselves clearly enough. The course allows you to gain the confidence needed to walk into the examination room knowing that you can effectively put into words the type of answer that the examiner is looking for.

What are the MCA Examiners like?
Many of them are Master Mariners of all nationalities who have been at sea for many years on various types of vessels. They are sea-men/women who expect you to answer their questions in the same way that they would.

Why do the MCA have an oral examination?
To verify that you possess enough experience and knowledge to hold their qualification.

Can the MCA examiner ask me any question they like?
They can ask you any question that is relevant either to the syllabus that is listed here, or to the qualification that you will be holding.

Do you have a list of all the questions that the MCA Examiner may ask me?
We do have a basic list of questions of the most important topics, but it is impossible to know all of the questions that the MCA Examiner will ask you. The idea of the HMA Master Oral Prep course is not to give you the answers to all the known questions but to fill-in gaps of your knowledge for the MCA qualification.

Will an examiner fail me if I give a wrong answer to a question?
It depends on the question. If it is about a fundamental subject such as the Col Regs, then the answer is yes. However, if it is about a subject such as Salvage, and you answer a question incorrectly, they will still look to see that you have a basic understanding of the subject.

Will completing this course guarantee that I pass the Oral Examination?
Unfortunately we cannot guarantee this. The idea of this course is to fill-in the missing gaps of your knowledge that are relevant to the MCA oral examination.

My English level is not that good?
Under the IMO, it says that you must have a good working knowledge of maritime English. The MCA examiner will expect that you can express yourself clearly and be fluent enough to be able to give orders to crew.

What happens if I fail the MCA Oral examination?
As part of our policy, we do have a follow-up procedure for students in this position. Part of this policy includes additional studies and, if you wish, you may join another oral prep week at a reduced cost.

Contact us at training@harrisonmaritime.com or telephone France +33 (0)489 688 650.
Copyright Harrison Maritime Associates SARL (May 2013) excluding images used.

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