Day Skipper Course Syllabus Tidal

The Day Skipper Course is conducted on board a cruising yacht (7 to 13m LOA), to teach pilotage, navigation, seamanship and boat handling up to the standard required to skipper a small cruising yacht safely by day in tidal waters with which the student is familiar.

By the end of the course, the student is expected to have demonstrated their ability in the following areas.

Section A – (All candidates)

    1. Preparation for sea
      • Ability to prepare a yacht for sea, including engine checks, selection of sails, securing and stowage of all gear on deck and below.
    2. Deck work
      • Can reef, shake out reefs and change sails to suit prevailing conditions.
      • Can prepare an anchor, mooring warps and take charge on deck when mooring alongside, coming to a buoy, anchoring, weighing anchor and slipping from a buoy or an alongside berth.
    3. Navigation – Is proficient in chartwork and routine navigational duties on passage including:
      • Taking and plotting visual fixes.
      • Use of electronic navigation equipment for position fixing.
      • Estimating tidal heights and tidal streams.
      • Use of waypoints.
      • Working up DR and EP.
      • Working out course to steer to allow for tidal stream, leeway and drift.
      • Knowledge of IALA buoyage.
      • Maintenance of navigational records.
      • Use of echo sounder and lead line.
    4. Pilotage
      • Can prepare and execute a pilotage plan for entry into, or departure from, harbour.
      • Understands the use of leading and clearing lines.
      • Use of transits and soundings as aids to pilotage.
    5. Meteorology
      • Knows sources of forecast information.
      • Can interpret shipping forecasts and use a barometer as a forecasting aid.
    6. Rule of the road
      • Has a working knowledge of the International Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea.
    7. Maintenance and repair work
      • Understands and is able to carry out maintenance tasks.
      • Knows the properties and uses of common synthetic fibre ropes.
    8. Engines
      • Knows how to change fuel and water filters, pump impeller and to bleed the fuel system.
    9. Victualling
      • Understands how to victual a yacht.
    10. Emergency situations
      • Is able to take correct action as skipper for recovery of a man overboard.
      • Understands distress flares and how to use a liferaft.
      • Can operate a radio telephone in an emergency and send a distress message.
      • Understands rescue procedures including helicopter rescue.
      • Understands how to secure a tow.

Section B – (Sail Training Candidates only – Watch Leader)

    1. General organisation
      • Understands the organisation and is fully competent to take charge of a watch at sea and in harbour.

Section C – (Yachting Candidates only – Day Skipper)

  1. Yacht handling under power
    • Can bring a boat safely to and from and alongside berth, mooring buoy and anchor under various conditions of wind and tide.
  2. Yacht handling under sail
    • Can bring a yacht safely to and from a mooring buoy and anchor under various conditions of wind and tide.
    • Can steer and trim sails effectively on all points of sailing.
  3. Passage making
    • Can plan and make a coastal passage, taking account of relevant navigational hazards and limitations imposed by the type of boat and the strength of the crew.