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Bristol Channel Divers

skill development courses

This is a list of the SDCs supported by BSAC. Bristol Channel Divers arrange these courses from time to time, at the request of our members. Taking these courses extends your diving knowledge and adds interest to your diving and can even save the life of a fellow diver if you have received the appropriate training.

BSAC HQ maintain a list of course dates.

The minimum qualifications required to take each course are shown at the end of each description.


Advanced Diving Techniques
2 day course which includes practical diving sessions, introduces and builds on existing knowledge in the preparation and use of appropriate equipment for more challenging types of diving such as wreck dives and dives involving decompression.
Min: Sports Diver + 20 dives

Advanced Lifesaver Award
Members who hold the BSAC Lifesaver Award (and ideally Practical Rescue Management and First Aid for Divers certificates) may apply to take this award. This is a one-day examination that includes a theory test and a practical evaluation of open water rescue skills.
Min: Sports Diver + Lifesaver

Advanced Nitrox Diver
This is the follow-up course to Nitrox Diver and teaches use of Nitrox mixes up to Nitrox50 and its use as a decompression gas.
Min: Sports Diver + Nitrox Diver + 20 dives

Boat Handling
An introduction to the safe use of small power boats.
Min: Open (BSAC members only)

Chartwork and Position Fixing
A two-day course to teach the basic techniques of marine navigation.
Min: Open

Combined Nitrox
A two-day course that combines BSAC Nitrox Diver and Advanced Nitrox Diver courses.
Min: Sports Diver + 20 Dives

Compressor Operation
One-day course to learn how to get the best from a compressor.
Min: Sports Diver

Disability Awareness
A course designed to give divers confidence about including people with disabilities within their diving activities.
Min: Sports Diver + 20 dives

Dive Planning and Marshalling
Aimed at potential Dive Leaders and Advanced Divers, this two-day course introduces and extends existing knowledge and practical skills for planning and marshalling dives.
Min: Sports Diver

Diver Cox’n
Having completed the Boat Handling course and having gained further experience, this assessment proves your competence as a dive boat Cox'n.
Min: Boat Handling + experience

Diver Rescue Specialist
Not a course but on completion of Lifesaver, Advanced Lifesaver, Practical Rescue Management, First Aid for Divers and Oxygen Administration members can apply for the Diver Rescue Specialist Award.

Diving Operations Specialist
Not a course but on completion of Dive Planning & Marshalling, Advanced Diving Techniques, Search & Recovery, Compressor Operation and Equipment Care members can apply for the Diving Operations Specialist Award.

Drysuit training
A night in the pool where we'll show you some of the techniques required for diving in a drysuit.
Min: Ocean Diver

Equipment Care
Learn how to prolong the life of your diving equipment, how to diagnose problems, what you can repair and what should be left to the experts.
Min: Open

Extended Range Diving
To undertake this course you need to be a Sports Diver and have taken the Advanced Nitrox Diver SDC. This three-day course promotes efficient, successful and safe deeper diving techniques.
Min: Sports Diver + Advanced Nitrox Diver

First Aid for Divers
One day course looking at first aid from a diver's perspective and deals specifically with diving and snorkeling-related injuries.
Min: Ocean Diver

Full Face Masks
Course covering the construction, advantages and disadvantages of full face masks for recreational and technical diving. It also provides practical training in pool conditions in the use of a variety of makes of mask.
Min: Sports Diver

Lifesaver Award
The first step in BSAC lifesaver training.
Min: Ocean Diver

Marine Biology
This 2-day course aims to thoroughly familiarise divers with methods of classification and identification of marine organisms and to give elementary knowledge of the interaction between organisms and their environment.
Min: Open

Marine Life Identification
Involving both diving and laboratory studies, this course introduces you to marine life and how different marine species are classified and identified.
Min: Sports Diver

Nautical Archaeology
Courses run by the Nautical Archaeology Society are recognised by BSAC, upon completion, with the award of the Nautical Archaeology Certificate (cost £3 from HQ). If you are interested in obtaining training in underwater archaeological techniques contact the Nautical Archaeology Society at Fort Cumberland, Fort Cumberland Road, Eastney, Portsmouth, PO4 9LD, Tel: 023 9281 8419 or email: nas@nasportsmouth.org.uk

Nitrox Diver
A one day classroom course on the use of Nitrox 32% & 36% mixes for no stop dives; use of the BSAC Nitrox Decompression Tables and how to analyse gas mixes. See also Combined Nitrox and Advanced Nitrox courses.
Min: Ocean Diver

Outboard and Boat Maintenance
A one-day course looking at the design and operation of outboard engines, owner servicing, fault finding and rectification. It also covers care of the boat hull and trailer.
Min: Open

Oxygen Administration
The aim of this course is to teach the administration of oxygen as a means of increasing the effectiveness of first aid treatment of diving accidents. The course requires no pre-knowledge of oxygen equipment but does necessitate the student having current knowledge of diving related disorders and their symptoms.
Min: Ocean Diver

Practical Rescue Management
A one-day course deigned to develop dive rescue knowledge and skills using on land and in water practical sessions to teach the management of rescue situations.
Min: Sports Diver

Rebreather Awareness
An introduction to rebreathers via classroom and pool sessions.
Min: Sports Diver + Advanced Nitrox

Rescue First Aid
This course introduces more advanced first aid skills such as use of bag resuscitators, intubation and neck stabilisation. It also provides refresher training for holders of BSAC First Aid for Divers and Oxygen Administration certificates. The course concludes with a practical assessment and those who reach the required standard will receive the BSAC Rescue First Aid award.
Min: Sports Dive + First Aid for Divers + Oxygen Administration

Seamanship Specialist
On completion of Boat Handling, Diver Cox'n, Chartwork & Position Fixing and Outboard & Boat Maintenance courses, members can apply for this award.

Search and Recovery
A 2-day course to instruct members in underwater search techniques and safe procedures for using buoyancy for lifting and recovering objects from the seabed and bringing them ashore.
Min: Sports Diver

Short Range Radio Certificate Course GMDSS
Due to the recent changes in the assessment of this course, BSAC is no longer able to offer this course. Most RYA schools run these courses. BCD members may wish to talk to Simon or Fiona who already hold this licence.

Underwater Photography
This course will acquaint members, who should have a basic understanding of photographic processes and techniques, with the specific problems of underwater photography and how they can be overcome with special apparatus and techniques.
Min: Sports Diver

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