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Day Skipper
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RYA Training Centre

Centaur Sailing RYA Courses by distance learning: High quality tuition at reasonable cost
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A step-by-step guide to our distance learning courses
  1. Choosing your course
    1. All our full-support courses cost £230 each and all our no-support courses cost £130 each.
    2. Our courses are conducted by e-mail and these instructions for the use of our plotter function as a sample of our course materials.
    3. RYA Day Skipper is our entry level theory course covering inshore passages that are within sight of land (approximately 7 miles from shore), i.e. in familiar waters during daylight. Students receive:
      1. 365 pages of illustrated notes and exercises provided on a CD-ROM in 'pdf' format allowing students to study at their own pace and when not connected to the internet. Approximately 59 hours of study & practice are required to extract the most benefit from the course.
      2. RYA Training Charts 3 and 4 (Northern Hemisphere) in paper and electronic versions. The electronic version doesn't work on a Mac computer.
    4. RYA Coastal Skipper/Yachtmaster Offshore is the advanced level course for anyone wishing to extend their knowledge of navigation to include offshore (up to 12 miles from shore for Coastal Skipper or 150 miles for Yachtmaster Offshore) including night passages for both. Students receive:
      1. 414 pages of illustrated notes and exercises provided on a CD-ROM in 'pdf' format allowing students to study at their own pace and when not connected to the internet. Approximately 63 hours of study & practice are required to extract the most benefit from the course.
      2. RYA Training Charts 3 and 4 (Northern Hemisphere) in paper and electronic versions. The electronic version doesn't work on a Mac computer.
    5. RYA Yachtmaster Ocean is another advanced level course for anyone wishing to extend their knowledge of navigation to include ocean passages using astro-navigation, i.e. anywhere in the world irrespective of the distance from shore. Students receive:
      1. 370 pages of illustrated notes and exercises provided on a CD-ROM in 'pdf' format allowing students to study at their own pace and when not connected to the internet. Approximately 62 hours of study & practice are required to extract the most benefit from the course.
      2. RYA Yachtmaster Ocean course book containing extracts from the Nautical Almanac 1980 and AP3271 Sight Reduction Tables.
    6. Telephone free to 'Centaur Sailing' (as the 'Full name') on Skype or call 07970-646885. Making a free 'video call' using Skype allows us to 'show you' while we are talking just as if we were face-to-face in a classroom. We are normally available from 1000 to 1700 (Zone 0, i.e. UK time), 7 days a week. Although we prefer telephone contact for answering enquiries, we can also be contacted by e-mail: centaursailing@gmail.com.
  1. Ordering your course
    1. View the 'Term & Conditions' page of our wesite.
    2. View the 'Place your order here' page of our wesite.
    3. A marine course plotter is also needed to be able to complete your course. It is an optional extra because students often already have one.
  1. Also required (from other sources)
    1. Technology based: a personal (Windows or Mac) computer with a CD-ROM drive; a broadband connection to the internet; e-mail facilities; if you don't already have a copy of 'Adobe Acrobat Reader' on your computer, you can download it free of charge; a printer, for proformae and if you want the notes printed on paper for retention; a scanner (or a digital camera).
    2. RYA Training Almanac (Northern Hemisphere), a fictitious almanac designed specifically for RYA shorebased theory courses (not required for Yachtmaster Ocean). The latest edition is available direct from the Royal Yachting Association's shop.
    3. Admiralty Chart 5011, the reference book for the symbols and abbreviations used on Admiralty charts, i.e. those used for RYA shorebased courses. The latest edition is available direct from the Royal Yachting Association's shop.
    4. More traditional “tools for the job”: we recommend a pencil-holding compass for drawing erasable arcs on your charts ('Weems & Plath 1049 Professional Brass Pencil Compass' - Google to find a supplier, being brass it can survive in a salt-water environment and it has a good span. It's not cheap but it is excellent quality); a 2B pencil (gives a good bold line which can easily be erased and therefore is kinder to your charts); a soft eraser (white is kindest to your charts), the hard or brown types of erasers aren’t very successful on charts and can ruin them; a pencil sharpener.
  1. Assessments & certificates (included in the cost of a course)
    1. When study and completion of the exercises for all the modules of the course have been completed, we ask students to send us an e-mail to ask for the mock assessment paper(s).
    2. Mock assessments are conducted by e-mail using 'Acrobat Forms' like this sample Q&A document from our Day Skipper course. This means that you can sit the papers at home or even on board your boat.
    3. Just like the mocks, final 'real' assessments are conducted by e-mail using 'Acrobat Forms' but they need to be invigilated, e.g. by a relative or friend. If you are enrolling on Coastal Skipper, or a Yachtmaster course and are planning to work commercially on super yachts over 24 metres LOA, the assessments have to be invigilated under special conditions by a RYA Training Centre, we'll discuss these 'special conditions' with you when returning your marked mock assessments. If not, you can sit the papers at home or even on board your boat, however to retain their validity as assessments they need to be completed and submitted to us for marking within 24 hours of the time shown in the e-mail sending them to you.
    4. For Day Skipper there are 2 assessment papers: chartwork and a general paper covering the rest of the course. For Coastal Skipper/Yachtmaster Offshore there are 3 assessment papers: chartwork, meteorology and collision regulations. For Yachtmaster Ocean there is just 1 assessment paper, covering everything!
    5. On achieving the required standard in all the assessments for your course we will: award your genuine RYA/MCA satisfactory course completion certificate and send it to you by first class post to the address we have on record for you, we will also send you a 'Congratulations' e-mail (with an e-copy of your certificate attached) to let you know that your certificate is on its way to you.
  1. Consolidation and gaining experience
    1. Gain experience and sea miles afloat in good company with BRASSY.org ~ Basingstoke & Reading Association of Social Sailors & Yachtsmen welcome people with a mutual interest in sailing.

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