General Details
Course & Certification:

ID: 6.3.1

Description: Radio GMDSS DSC A1

Certification type: Certificate of Proficiency
Presentation A5.

ISO 9001:2015 compliance course & certification.

Course Length:

A total of 22 hours consisting of;

Pre-Course study = 2 hours.
Theory Class Lessons = 12 hours.
Practical Radio Exercises = 4 hours.
Home-study = 4 hours.

Capacity of certification:

On privately registered yachts:
For crew to operate a Marine Radio VHF DSC near-coastal & offshore.

On commercially registered yachts for charter < 24 metres LWL:
For crew to operate a Marine Radio VHF DSC near-coastal < 20Nm from a Safe Haven.

On commercial workboats < 20 mtrs LWL carrying less than 12 passengers:
For crew to operate a Marine Radio VHF DSC near-coastal < 20Nm from a Safe Haven.

Recognitions & approvals:

Certificate recognised by all CEPT countries which have adopted CEPT/ERC/REC 31-04.

Reference Standards:

Radio Operator's Certificate for NON-SOLAS Vessels.

Syllabus recommended by the European Conference of Postal and Telecommunications Administrations (CEPT).

Examinations, theory & practical, conducted as per the European Radiocommunication Committee (ERC) Recommendations CEPT/ERC/REC 31-04.

Certification Revalidation:

Required every 5 years if used in a professional capacity and/or in conjunction with all professional iymcs CoCs + M40GT/17m power + M40GT/20m sail.

Revalidation is not required when used in conjunction with iymcs CoCs: Open-Sportsboat 10m, M10GT/12m sail or power, M20GT/15m sail.

Sea-time requirements:


Certification issuing requirements:


What does the Certification look like?

iymcs a5 certif

The custom-designed iymcs presentation folder type certification is stylish and practical. The presentation folder outer is made of real leather with a sythentic interior that is resistant to water and protects the certificates. It is A5 in size, it can hold up to four Certificates, and is an ideal size to be kept in a crew document case or with the boat's documents.

The iymcs Certificates are printed to ISO9001:2015 standards, are dual-language and feature extensive security features to security level 3 (Government passports & national Iidentification documents are security levels 1 & 2) and can be used as a personal ID in daily situations. (Nb. It cannot be used instead of a passport/national identity card).

This iymcs Radio GMDSS DSC A1 course is a Global Maritime Distress & Safety System (GMDSS) foundation course that incorporates the ITU Radio SRC/DSC Certification.

The reason behind the GMDSS foundation course is that the Marine VHF Radio is integrated within the GMDSS system through the Digital Selective Calling (DSC) service and for this reason, it is important to have a good understanding of the GMDSS system and how it functions with particular reference to Search and Rescue. Undertaking this course serves the following purposes:

It gives all crew a good level of depth of knowledge. It enables the crew to communicate effectively in distress & urgency situations with the CG, MRCC or MRSC and other vessels. It strengthens the prior-learning knowledge for the professional crew before they do the GMDSS GOC.

This comprehensive course focuses upon the GMDSS set-up giving almost a complete background knowledge of the system and its procedures. The subjects are covered in-depth and the operating procedures are shown with scenarios and responses to, focusing upon SOLAS requirements.

The principal objective of the course is for the student or candidate to gain sufficient knowledge about the GMDSS communications equipment and the associated procedures for effective use of the marine VHF radio in Sea Area A1.

Good communications at sea is absolutely vital, good training makes all the difference when it comes to safety, the iymcs Radio GMDSS DSC A1 course and certificate does just this.

What is this?

Our Society, the 'International Yacht Marine Certification Society" (iymcs) operates its entire operations under a Quality Management System (QMS) that is in compliance with the International Standards Organisation (ISO) 9001:2015 amended. Part of this compliance involves full auditing procedures.
This is an important reference and enables us to gain recognitions from maritime administrations and marine industry bodies alike. The QMS together with the ISO, ensures that iymcs and its Members operate to the highest standards possible. All our courses, and more importantly the Certifications that we issue, are under ISO9001:2015.
This practice is most unusual for such courses and certifications. Some organisations will claim ISO:9001 adherence but often the reality is the ISO compliance is for a very small number of their courses.


How much does the course cost?

The following are the recommended iymcs course prices (ex.VAT), prices may fluctuate between Member schools & colleges.

Scandinavia 300,-EUR Northern Europe 300,-EUR United Kingdom 280,-GBP
Southern Europe 300,-EUR Middle East 300,-USD North America 300,-USD
Prices exclude: course books,certification costs,personal traveling costs,course food and course accommodation.

Course Enquiry or Booking.

Your name; Your country of residence;
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My ideal course date is; Where would you like to do the course;

Related Courses

Course Syllabus.

( Vers. 1.8. CEPT/ERC.)   Click-on '+' to see Syllabus.

Science of radio waves (A1.1.3. Radio wave propagation (A1.1.3). Ground waves and sky waves propagation (A1.1.3). Tx & Rx ranges (A1.1.3). Marine VHF Radio Telephone installation (B3.3.2 & 3.3). Interfacing connection to a positioning device (B3.3.2). GMDSS, ITU & SOLAS. Distress Mayday -history and background of.

GMDSS Structure (A2.2.1). GMDSS Sea areas (A2.2.1). SAR Organisation (A3.3.3). MRCC & MRSC (A3.3.2)..

Radio frequency and bands. Simplex, Semi-duplex & Full-duplex operations (A1.1.3). Transmission and receiving distances (A1.1.3). Types of Communications (A1.1.1). Channel types, Categories & Usages (A1.1.3).

Types of Aerials. Antenna performance & positioning. (B3.3.1). Antenna Gain. Types of Antenna. Antenna Interfacing Units. WiFi Antenna Group. Standing Wave Ratio Meter. Lightening.

Marine VHF Radio - Mobile Station Units (B1.1.3). Marine VHF Radio - Handheld Units (B1.1.3). Marine VHF Radio - GMDSS SOLAS Survival Craft Radio. On-Board Radio UHF - Handheld. Marine Headsets & Mics. NAVTEX. Emergency Position-Indicating Radio Beacon (EPIRB) (C3.3.1 + C2.2.6 + Equipment. C3.3.2). MOB Personal Location Beacon (PLB). Search & Rescue Transponder (SART) (C3.3.2 + C3.3).

DSC - History & Development. Maritime Mobile Service Identity Number (MMSI). National ID - Maritime Identification Digits (B2.2.3). MMSI N°s - Ship Station (B2.2.3). MMSI N°s - Coast Station (B2.2.3). MMSI N°s - Group Call (B2.2.3). MMSI N°s - EPIRB AIS & SART AIS Beacons. MMSI Resources.

AIS - System. AIS - Channel & Frequency Allocation. AIS - On Board Equipment & Installation. AIS - Transceivers, Transponders & Receiver Units. AIS - Principal Functions & Cautionary Points. AIS - Data Transmissions. AIS - Data Error & Implications.

Principal Controls (B1.1.2). Initial Switch-On & Operator Procedure. Power Outputs. Dual-Watch, Tri-Watch & Scan-Watch (B1.1.1). Channel 16 (A1.1.3). Primary International Channels (A1.1.3). VHF Channels & Frequencies (A1.1.3). Adverse Meteorological Conditions. DSC System, Alert & Messaging DSC (B2.2.2 & B2.2.4).

Ships Radio Station Licences. Radio Operator Certifications (E1.1.2). Types of Radio Stations (A1.1.2). ITU International & Regional Channel Lists (E1.1.2). ITU/GMDSS Regulations of Operations & Good Practices. (E1.1.2). Vessel Identification (D2.2.1) & MMSI (B2.2.3). GMDSS Radio log (E1.1.2).

Official ITU & GMDSS Publications. International Code of Signals. Independently Published Yacht; Cruising Guides, Pilot books, Charts. UKHO Admiralty Sailing Directions. Electronic Chart Plotters (ECS) Information Inserts/Boxes. Official Online Internet Resources.

The International Phonetic Alphabet (D1.1.5). International Marine Communications Procedure Words (D1.1.4). Communication Phrases Exercises. Phonetic Alphabet Exercises.

Com procedures -ship to ship (B2.2.1 & D2.2.1). Com procedures -ship to MRCC or MRSC (A3.3.4 & D2.2.1). Com procedures -ship to coast station (D2.2.2). Com procedures -ship to VTS Control station (D2.2.2). Com Procedures -ship to Aircraft station. Traffic Lists. Traffic Charges (D2.2.3). Radio Procedures Cards.

The Col.Regs (IRPCS). Efective Communication Criteria. Ship-to Ship Procedure. Specific Procedure Words & Phrases.

On-board Communications - UHF Handheld (C3.3.3). Tender/Auxiliary Communications - VHF Handheld & Fixed (C3.3.3). Communication On-Board Ranges (C3.3.3). Battery Provisions (C3.3.3). Message Relay.

Distress Mayday Situation - Definitions. Distress Mayday Situation - Determining. Distress Mayday - Alert & Message Content (B2.2.1 & C1.1.1). Distress Mayday - Tx Procedures (C1.1.1). Distress Mayday - Response Procedures (A3.3.4 & C2.2.2). Distress Mayday - Relay Procedures (A3.3.4). Distress Mayday - Cancellation Procedures. Obligation to Assist a Vessel, Aircraft or Person/s in Distress. Urgency Pan Pan - Definitions. Urgency Pan Pan - Tx Procedures (B2.2.1 & C1.1.2). Urgency Pan Pan - Response Procedures (A3.3.4). Urgency Pan Pan - Cancellation Procedures.

Reference Publications. Telemedical Advice Services (TMAS). TMAS Assistance - Patient Information. Medical Advice - Standard Phrases. Urgency Pan Pan (Medico/Medical) Message - Tx Procedures (D1.1.2).

Safety Sécurité Message - categories (D1.1.3). Safety Sécurité Message - content (B2.2.1 & D1.1.3). Safety Sécurité Message - Rx & Tx procedures Safety (C1.1.2 & D1.1.3).

NBDP Principles (A4.4.1). Message Format & Categories (A4.4.1). Messages which cannot be rejected (A4.4.1). Message Record Keeping. NAVTEX Stations & Frequencies (E1.1.1). Installations. Set-Up & Operating Procedures (A4.4.1).

Marine VHF Channel Development. Frequency Guard Bands (C2.2.1). Guard Frequencies & Avoidance of Transmissions (C2.2.1 & C2.2.5). Test Distress Protocols & Procedures (C2.2.4). Cancellation Procedures for False Distress Alert Transmitted (C2.2.6). Prevention of Unauthorised Transmissions (C2.2.3). Distress & Urgency Channel 16 Frequency Blocked.

Daily set-up and testing. Basic fault finding. Certificate expiry dates. Connection to different power sources ((B3.3.3). Requirements & Safety (B3.3.3). Charging (B3.3.3). Maintenance of batteries (B3.3.