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Old 22-12-2016, 15:44   #1
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USCG license training from "Nautical School"

I am looking to take classes for USCG OUPV or Master ticket. There is a "Nautical School" class not too far and a "Boatwise" class a little farther.

anybody have experience with either school? I am quite sure I can pass the tests as I have been sailing since before LORAN and am a good student, but I am very interested in whether the school assists in completing the license application and verifying time on the water.

thanks
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Old 22-12-2016, 15:46   #2
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Re: USCG license training from "Nautical School"

Consider Mariners Learning System, that is what I used ...

https://www.marinerslearningsystem.com/home.php
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Old 22-12-2016, 17:25   #3
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Re: USCG license training from "Nautical School"

Not specifically familiar with Nautical School or Boatwise, but schools typically don't look at your seatime. They tell you how to fill out the paperwork, but you're on your own documenting the time.
I occasionally proctor the live exams for Mariners Learning System and its an excellent program. Online study at your own pace and you don't do the exams until you feel you're ready. I see much higher average scores than I do in my classroom courses, but I have no idea how many people start the course and don't finish it.
On the water experience really doesn't help with the exams, in fact it can be a hindrance. Many of the questions, especially in the critical Rules of the Road section are purely theoretical in nature and real world experience can conflict with the way the rules are written, leading to wrong answers. We spend a lot of time in class " unlearning" things to make room for the " correct" answers.
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Old 22-12-2016, 17:41   #4
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Re: USCG license training from "Nautical School"

I took the Boatwise class. I learned a lot. Among other things I learned that I really had to study for 2-3 hours a day for two weeks before the exam.

I can learn on my own, but taking the class really helped me with the self discipline bit.

The class did spend time on how to properly fill out the paperwork.
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Old 22-12-2016, 18:38   #5
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Re: USCG license training from "Nautical School"

thanks for the replies.

@ Cpt JGW -- heh heh.... as a teacher I sure understand the "unlearning" bit, having taught graduate school for a couple of decades. my students come in with the attitude they already know everything worth knowing and I am too old to know what's up.

I looked at Mariners Learning System in November; the fully-online model works well for my schedule, but it was much more expensive than the classroom models like Boatwise and Nautical School.

The Nautical School will hold a class about 25 minutes from my house, darn nice of them, but they are not email-communicative from their website contact form. Boatwise looks very nice, and I am glad to hear about the application help, @Dfelsent, but I'd have to drive about 100 minutes each way, could be a real pain in a snow storm
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Old 23-12-2016, 09:16   #6
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Re: USCG license training from "Nautical School"

Shouldn't you be asking the schools this question.
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Old 23-12-2016, 09:27   #7
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Re: USCG license training from "Nautical School"

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tingum View Post
Shouldn't you be asking the schools this question.


If only they would answer. Maybe it is the holidays....

Mariners replied with a generic robot no-promises answer. The other two have not replied.

But I am more than curious to hear from people who have experience with any of these three, or other schools. It's a lot of time and a lot of money so I hope to make an informed decision. Thanks!
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Old 23-12-2016, 09:29   #8
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Re: USCG license training from "Nautical School"

I took licensing course at a local community college. Reasonable price a great instruction. Courses were offered in their "Workforce Development" curricula. Successful completion earned a certificate you could present to USCG in lieu of taking the exam. The ability to offer the certificate is a good indication that the course is credible.
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Old 23-12-2016, 09:36   #9
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Re: USCG license training from "Nautical School"

Right. The USCG watches their approved schools like a hawk. They sometimes even send in "mystery shoppers" to take the course and report any policy violations. If they're authorized to give the exams, you know they're at least up to CG minimum standards.
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Old 23-12-2016, 11:46   #10
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Re: USCG license training from "Nautical School"

Loran (Alpha) was developed during World War II so I doubt if you have been sailing that long. More to the point, don't even think about taking the license exams for OUPV or 100 Ton Master's ticket on you own. (The exams for both ratings are the same it just depends on you sea time which rating you get.) Pay the money and go to a recognized training program with a US Coast Guard authorized curriculum and which administers and grades their own exams in-house.

I doesn't matter how long you have been sailing if you can't document it. The 360 days of sea time (OUPV) or 720 days for Master must be documented on USCG Form-710S and signed, under penalty of perjury, by the masters or owners of the vessels you have served on as a working crew member. Good luck.
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Old 23-12-2016, 12:11   #11
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Re: USCG license training from "Nautical School"

Quote:
Originally Posted by jmschmidt View Post
Loran (Alpha) was developed during World War II so I doubt if you have been sailing that long.
ha, good point! I should have specified the consumer LORAN units available to sailors starting about 1984. small green screen showed LAT/LON and you plotted your position. An RDF+watch+ binoculars was my high tech system until 1990.
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Old 23-12-2016, 13:36   #12
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Re: USCG license training from "Nautical School"

I am former Coast Guard Officer and when time came to get Captains's License I used Mariners Learning System online... Passed all their on-line course modules then scheduled and sat for the exam... Worked great... Good Luck!
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Old 23-12-2016, 13:53   #13
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Re: USCG license training from "Nautical School"

Documenting seatime on a boat you own or owned is easy. You only have to prove you owned the boat (a copy of the registration or document does that). You then fill in the form attesting to the time you operated it. As long as it looks believable, they will accept it. Don't try to convince them you did 360 days in one or even two calendar years on the Great Lakes even if you really did, they're just not going to buy it. Don't lie of course. You can go back to age 16 accumulating time if you have records showing you or your family owned the boat. Paid time is better as it can be verified, but it's not necessary.
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Old 23-12-2016, 14:02   #14
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Re: USCG license training from "Nautical School"

It is possible to pass the USCG exams without taking a course, but not recommended. I did it but I had 10 years experience teaching boat safety and member courses with the US Coast Guard Auxiliary at that time. I had an unfair advantage. I read a couple books to learn the process and what I needed to catch up on, then went to REC Toledo and passed all the exams in one go. I'm the only person I know who did that, but I've met many who failed.
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Old 23-12-2016, 14:12   #15
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Re: USCG license training from "Nautical School"

Thanks Capt JGW -- it seemed too easy to me-- that I could just prove ownership and then swear to time spent. 360 "days" (4-8 hours as I read it) over 10 years is only about a month of sailing per year, it's easy to do double or triple that (outside of the Great Lakes!).

1) I read the regulations about "time outside the boundary" in regards to an inland or coast license. For an OUPV does it matter how far from the coast the days are spent?

2) I've done quite a few offshore deliveries as unpaid crew - i have no idea who the boat owner was because he wasn't on board. could the licensed captain of the delivery verify the time for me?

3) I've passed the Day Skipper and Coastal Skipper exams, time, and practicals under the RYA system. Could the RYA examiner verify my time?

thanks to everyone commenting. I have hesitated registering for a course because there is a one year limit to passing the test then applying for the license, but if I have a relatively clear path to proving time spent it will be just a matter of money (physical, drug test, TWIC expenses)
fair seas!
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