Read in the series:
  • STCW Convention at a glance
  • STCW Convention: Terms and Definitions
  • Certificates needed for compliance with STCW
  • How seafarers can get their STCW certificates
  • STCW Convention: General requirements for officers
  • STCW Convention: General requirements for ratings

Able seafarer deck & engine: a rating qualified in accordance with the provisions of regulation II/5 of the convention. The AB seafarer engine is a new qualification and, under section A VII/2.3 and 4, there are new provisions for an integrated rating covering both deck and engine duties. These positions are not mandatory under the safe manning requirements unless required by the administration.

Administration: the country whose flag a ship is entitled to fly. Among other things, an administration deals with regulating the training, education and certification of seafarers in accordance with the requirements of the convention.

Certificate of competence: A certificate issued and endorsed by the administration, for masters, officer and GMDSS radio operators in accordance with the provisions of chapters II, III, IV or VII and entitles the lawful holder thereof to serve in the capacity and perform the functions involved at the level of responsibility specified.

Certificate of proficiency: A certificate, other than a certificate of competency issued to a seafarer, stating that the relevant requirements of training, competencies or seagoing service in the convention have been met. Documentary evidence Documentation, other than a certification of competency or certificate of proficiency used to establish that the relevant requirements of the convention have been met.

Endorsement: A document issued to masters and officers, either as part of the certificate or as a separate document. This attests (endorses) that the national certificate has been issued in accordance with all STCW requirements

Endorsement of recognition: This endorsement certificate is issued by an administration as an official recognition of the validity of a certificate issued by another administration

Electro-technical:  an officer qualified in accordance with the provisions of regulation III/6 of the convention.

Electro-technical rating means a rating qualified in accordance with the provisions of regulation III/7 of the convention.  These positions are not a manning requirement or prohibit other positions of other electrical roles onboard

Levels of responsibility: there are three levels as follows:

  • management level - applies to senior officers;
  • operational level - applies to junior officers; and
  • support level - applies to ratings forming part of a navigational or engine watch.

Party: A country where the STCW Convention has entered into force. A party is under the obligation to implement the standards contained in the convention.

Seagoing service: Service on board a ship relevant to the issue of a certificate or other qualification. For example, one of the requirements to qualify as a rating forming part of a navigational watch is to have approved seagoing service, including not less than six months’ training and experience.

Seagoing ship: A ship navigating in areas not close to inland or sheltered waters or where port regulations apply.

Security duties include all tasks and duties on-board ships as defined by chapter XI-2 of SOLAS and the ISPS code.

Shipboard tasks: the level of certification and training that seafarers are required to have is based on the capacity in which they serve and the type of vessel they work on. Their shipboard tasks are categorized by functions and levels of responsibility. See table below for more details

STCW certificates: The term ‘certificates’ covers all official documents required under STCW. It includes certificates of competence, endorsements, certificates of proficiency, and any documentary evidence showing that a requirement of the convention has been met.

The different functions and levels of responsibility of shipboard tasks

Ship Security Officer:  the person on-board the ship, accountable to the master, designated by the company as responsible for the security of the ship, including implementation and maintenance of the ship security plan and liaison with the company security officer and port facility security officers. The designation of a ship security officer is mandatory.

Standard of competence : the minimum knowledge, understanding and proficiency that seafarers must demonstrate to gain certification. The tables contained in part A of the STCW Code specify the standards of competence to be achieved by the seafarer. For the complete tables and full details of standards of competence applying to the certificates you hold, refer to the STCW Code (part A) in the 2010-amended STCW Convention.

STCW Basic Safety certificates: a requirement for all professional seafarers.

The different functions and levels of responsibility of shipboard tasks

Function Level of Responsibility 
Management Operational Support
Deck Navigation

Cargo Handling

x

x

x

 

x

 

Deck & Engine Controlling the operation of a ship and care for persons onboard x x
Engine Marine Engineering

Maintenance and repair

Electrical, Electronics and control engineering

x

x

x

 

x

x

x

 

x

 

 

 

Radio Radio communication x

Ship Security Officer:  the person on-board the ship, accountable to the master, designated by the company as responsible for the security of the ship, including implementation and maintenance of the ship security plan and liaison with the company security officer and port facility security officers. The designation of a ship security officer is mandatory.

Standard of competence : the minimum knowledge, understanding and proficiency that seafarers must demonstrate to gain certification. The tables contained in part A of the STCW Code specify the standards of competence to be achieved by the seafarer. For the complete tables and full details of standards of competence applying to the certificates you hold, refer to the STCW Code (part A) in the 2010-amended STCW Convention.

STCW Basic Safety certificates: a requirement for all professional seafarers.