You best reference for all the above is the ASA
standard for 104. It lists all the required knowledge and skill items. Both the knowledge and hands on skills on which you will be evaluated in the course are listed in detail in this standard.
My suggestion to students for preparing for any ASA
course is to prepare well in advance of the class by reading the relevant text, then using the standard as a study guide to review the material.
You can find the complete standard on the ASA web site or in your ASA log book.
ASA 104 is mostly about boat
systems and the knowledge/skills required to live aboard
a boat for multiple days. Basic sailing skills are mostly covered in prerequisite classes
To answer some of you specific questions above:
- yes, under power
and Trimming sails
. Not so much, again basic sailing skills are part of prerequisite courses.
Operating a diesel engine
- yes. Basic operational theory is covered and you will be expected to operate the engine
during the class.
- most of the 104 level navigation curriculum is focus on planning. The details are listed under the "Navigation & Weather" section of the standard.
Handing - no ASA student level course requires single
handing skill demonstration (this only becomes a requirement at the instructor level). In a group class the other students will serve as crew.
If your instructor/school does not train and evaluate you on the required knowledge and skills as specified in the standard then I suggest you request a refund and report them to ASA.
(ASA Instructor Evaluator and former ASA school