Mali’s PADI Open Water Diver students, Christina and Bert loved their course and would like to continue their education.

After talking about the PADI Advanced Open Water Diver course they realise they won’t have the time to complete the whole course so Mali explains the PADI Adventure Diver option and how PADI Adventure Dives work.

Their goal is to become PADI Advanced Open Water certified as they would one day like to become PADI Divemasters. After discussing their options with Mali they opt to complete their Deep Diver, Underwater Navigator and Peak Performance Buoyancy Adventure with Mali but not certify as PADI Adventure Divers as they plan to take a referral to their local dive centre and complete their Dry Suit and Night Diver Adventure Dives when they return home after this trip.

What does Mali need to do before beginning this program and is she within PADI standards?

“Mali would need to complete the PADI Continuing Education Administrative Document as it is required for any component of the PADI Advanced Open Water Diver course.

She also needs to issue each student the PADI Advanced Open Water Diver student manual too. Even though the students are not completing the entire program, PADI standards dictate that the student must have a personal copy of the materials both during the course and for their use afterwards.

Even though Christina and Bert would qualify for the PADI Adventure Diver certification after the completion of the dives and required knowledge development, their choice to take the referral option is a wise one. This reduces their costs as they will not need to certify for two separate programs.

There is also no time limit set on this referral either in accordance to PADI standards which states the exception for PADI Advanced Open Water Diver and PADI Specialty Diver courses from the standard 12 months after the last completed section of training.”

Gaz Lyden. 

Maria and Carlos sign up for their IDC. The Course Director, Mika completes the orientation with the pair and then leaves Master Instructor François to complete the rest of the program.

Maria asks about the standards of teaching the program this way and François informs her that he is allowed to complete the balance of the program Under The Direction Of Mika.

Later in the program, Carlos has a question that François is unable to answer and says he refer to Mika when he available.

When Carlos asks where Mika is he is informed that Mika has taken a short break away from their location and will be back after the Instructor Exams are complete to begin Specialty Instructor seminars.

Is François correct in using the Supervision rating Under The Direction Of while teaching Maria and Carlos’ IDC?

"François is correct in the respect that an Instructor Development Course Staff Instructor may conduct the program Under The Direction Of the Course Director. Mika has to personally conduct the Orientation section of the program also, which he did.

The problem lies with their interpretation of Under The Direction Of level of Supervision during the IDC. Mika must be present for consultation somewhere on the premises. If he has taken a break away from the location this cannot be the case."

Gaz Lyden. 

Didi has just completed her IDC and begins work with a new dive centre in a new location. After completing an orientation period in which she is introduced to the logistics and procedures in the dive centre and having shadowed her new colleges on the local dive site, she is asked to take a PADI Open Water Course with six students.

Although she feels ready to teach she explains to her dive operations manager, Ralf that this is too many students for her to start her career with and she feels nervous about her ability to supervise the group effectively and would prefer to team-teach this course with another Instructor or have a Divemaster present to assist her.

Ralf informs her that he is assigning her this group as they are short staffed and that eight is the maximum student number for the course. He ensures her she’ll be fine with six and he’ll be around to help in any way he can during the course.

Is this a good idea and is there anything within PADI standards to help Didi defend her request?

"Although Ralf’s intentions are good and he wants Didi to do well he has to listen to her concerns. The PADI Code Of Practice contains guidelines for Instructors and their conduct – point 3 states that every Instructor should perform a personal readiness check including stating that new Instructors should make appropriately conservative judgment calls.

The section Instructor Judgement also supports Didi – it states that ‘you’ must apply sound judgment in determining what is appropriate for training each time you conduct a course or program based of your abilities and limitations and reduce the ratios accordingly.

As part of Didi’s risk assessment, she is correct in raising her concerns about taking such a large group in a relatively new environment as her first autonomous teaching experience."

Gaz Lyden. 

Instructor Moana is conducting the PADI Advanced Open Water and Open Water Diver course concurrently using multiple level teaching techniques and the help of a certified assistant, PADI Divemaster, Donny.

They meet their AOW students in the morning at the beach in preparation for their Underwater Navigation Adventure Dive after completing all knowledge development sections the previous evening.

Moana gives the briefing for the shore dive with their Donny, explaining that he will be leading the dive while she waits at the beach.

After completing the briefing for the performance requirements, dive parameters and how to think like a diver they allow Donny to lead their students on the Underwater Navigator dive to a maximum depth of 10 metres.

Moana waits at the beach waiting for their return with a full set of scuba equipment, ready to enter the water f required.

During this period Moana’s Open Water Students begin to arrive for their session which is due to begin once the Underwater Navigation Adventure Dive is completed.

Moana chats to them while they wait but keeps her eyes on the water at all times and excuses herself once she seems Donny lead the group to the surface.

She heads over to the group and talks to them about their dive and asks how it, their gas consumption and asks to see the Data Carrier to see their kick cycles and timed swim details.

She asks Donny for some feedback from the dive and he mentions that one of the student’s buoyancy may need some fine-tuning before the next Adventure Dive which happens to be the Dep Dive scheduled for the following morning.

Moana thanks him and then returns to her Open Water Diver students to brief and prepare for their first open water dive happening from the same location.

Is Moana within standards with the conduct for the Underwater Navigation Adventure Dive? Must she do anything else prior to leading the group for their Deep Diver Adventure Diver the following morning?

“Moana’s conduct for the Underwater Navigator dive is within standards and well executed. She followed all guideline for Indirect Supervision which the dive may be conducted under as long as it is shallower than 18 metres.

She also covered the Thinking Like A Diver briefing with the group before their dive and checked the use of the Data Carrier post dive.

Her debriefing with Donny is also important as it gives her essential information prior to the Deep Diver Adventure Dive which she must directly supervise.

Because Moana has no previous diving experience with her Advanced Open Water students she must assess the diver’s readiness prior to the Deep Dive happening the following morning. With Donny’s feedback about one of the student’s potential buoyancy issues, this must be part of that assessment too. “

Gaz Lyden.

PADI Instructor Colm has four PADI Open Water Diver students and during their confined water sessions one of them, Therese, has some difficulty with the No Mask Swim skill.

Colm askes his Divemaster, Amy, to look after the other three students at the surface so he can take Therese back under to do some remedial work with the mask.

Amy suggests that she can take Therese for the remedial work so Colm can carry on with the other students and after she has checked that Therese has mastered the No Mask Swim skill she will bring her over to join the class and carry on with the rest of the performance requirements.

Colm considers this option as it would keep the class running on schedule and trusts Amy to be able to check to see if Therese has mastered the skill.

Would they be acting within PADI Standards if they take this option?

"Although having the Divemaster assist in the remediation of a student diver is a great option and well within PADI standards, final skill mastery for the No Mask Swim must always be evaluated by the PADI Instructor."

Gaz Lyden.