Calculate sea service for an international certificate

How to calculate your sea service before you apply for a sea service assessment.

To obtain a certificate of competency for an international (STCW) certificate, you must have approved seagoing service.

Sea service should be assessed in accordance with Marine Order 70 (Seafarer certification) 2014Marine Order 71 (Masters and deck officers) 2014, Marine Order 72 (Engineer officers), Marine Order 73 (Ratings) and Marine Order 74 (Masters and deck officers—yachts).

How to calculate sea service

Your sea service is calculated by counting up all your individual working days. 

For example, if you have served 27 days on a voyage and 30 days on another, your combined sea service is 57 days This can be converted to months and days by dividing by 30 which is considered to be one month. We will therefore consider 57 days to be one month and 27 days of sea service.

Recording your training  

You can record your onboard training in the following ways: 

  • Training record book for STCW engineer watchkeeper. 
  • Documented training programs for STCW deck watchkeeper that includes a training record book (STCW watchkeeper deck 18 and 24 month pathways only). 
  • Task and guided study books (TAGS books) for STCW rating.

Calculating sea service for specific qualifications

    Integrated rating—bridging requirements

    Able seaman, engine room ratings (greasers) and Royal Australian Navy (RAN) equivalents can undertake bridging training to apply for an integrated rating certificate of proficiency.

    We will accept certificates of rating as able seaman, deck rating, engine room rating, (including greaser, oiler or similar).

     See Marine order 70 for details about equivalence arrangements.

    Find out about recognised prior learning arrangements at the Australian Maritime College, South Metropolitan College of TAFE and Hunter TAFE.

    Once you have finished the bridging course you must provide evidence from the college and shipping company. You must also complete an application form, medical fitness form, and payment of fees. 

    Your evidence may be one of the following: 

    • Documentation stating that you have completed the requirements for a Certificate III in marine operations (integrated rating). This consists of off-the-job academic training and on-the-job TAGS training. This can be from one of the following:
    • A copy of a letter from the shipping company that gives details of qualifying sea service since you completed the college component. For able seaman certificate, this must include at least two months documented sea service relevant to an engine room rating. For engine room rating, it must include at least two months documented sea service relevant to an able seaman.

    Transitional arrangements for deck officers and ratings certificates 

    Transitional arrangements for deck officers and ratings certificates can be found in schedule 5, Marine Order 71 (Masters and deck officers) 2014, and schedule 5, Marine Order 73 (Ratings) 2014

    Vessels not suitable as an appropriate vessel for ratings

    We will NOT accept service on jack up drill rigs and non-propelled barges engaged in port construction for the following:

    • Certificate of proficiency as integrated rating
    • Able seafarer—deck
    • Able Seafarer—engine 
    • Navigational watch rating 
    • Engine watch rating

    We may accept up to a maximum of four months qualifying sea service on semi-submersible drill rigs and floating cranes. 

    This decision is made on a case-by-case basis by the manager of Seafarer Certification Service. The decision will take into consideration the following factors:

    • The size of the vessel.
    • Whether it operates with a normal shipboard management structure. 
    • Whether it is fitted with lifeboats and other SOLAS survival equipment.
    • Whether crew take part in emergency drills and training that meets the requirements of the relevant regulations in SOLAS Chapter III. 

    Important disclaimer

    This information is summary information only. We makes decisions about seafarer certificates under Marine Order 70 (Seafarer certification) 2014, Marine Order 71 (Masters and deck officers) 2014, Marine Order 72 (Engineer officers) 2014, Marine Order 73 (Ratings) 2014 and Marine Order 74 (Masters and deck officers – yachts) 2015. Please refer to these marine orders for full details of eligibility and other requirements for certificate applications.

    Last updated: 

    Monday 15 March 2021