PADI Divemaster Program Revisions – First Look

PADI Divemaster Program Revisions – First Look

This article was originally posted at the PADI Instructor News blog, run by the good folks at PADI America’s. Thanks for sharing!
The revised PADI Divemaster course will be launched at DEMA in November. The new materials aren’t available for pre-order yet, but you can read about them below.
The information below is subject to change. Please refer to the Training Bulletin and 2011 Divemaster Instructor Guide (when it comes out) for final details.

The new program includes the most requested changes from PADI Members: emphasizing the dive guide role of a Divemaster, deepening candidate experience and skill background, and incorporating real-world, practical training for the programs DMs are authorized to conduct.

New PADI Divemaster Program Overview

What’s New:

  • Skill development through new workshops and practical applications. The new program has a 50 % increase in in-water training including:
  • Five new Divemaster-Conducted Program workshops: one for each course Divemasters are authorized to conduct.
  • Five Practical Application Skills:
  1. dive site set-up and management
  2. mapping project (unchanged)
  3. dive briefing
  4. search and recovery scenario*
  5. deep dive scenario*

* A specialty diver certification in this area may fulfill this skill requirement at the instructor’s discretion.

  • Dive Skills: four skin diving skills have been added.

The skill evaluation slate is being revised (product no. 60228).

  • Change to Prerequisites:
  • The Deep Diver and Search and Recovery specialty ratings are recommended, candidates may also demonstrate the skills related to these courses as part of the Practical Application Skills section (described above).
  • Candidates must have 40 logged dives to begin the program (it was 20).

  • Knowledge Development & Exam Changes:

  • Divemaster eLearning – an alternative to using the PADI Divemaster manual and DVD. The online option replaces all but one of the classroom presentations. The exam must be proctored by an instructor. Unlike the other eLearning courses, the DM exam is not included in the online program.

A revised PADI Divemaster Manual and DVD are also available for those who prefer traditional study tools.

  • The Divemaster exam now emphasizes the supervisory and leadership aspects of divemastering. The revised exam is written in more familiar terminology to more accurately assess candidate comprehension of the knowledge development topics – including dive theory.

The dive theory knowledge requirement for Divemaster is now an intermediate step between what’s required for the PADI Rescue Diver rating and Assistant Instructor or Instructor certification.

  • A DM candidate may “test out” of the dive theory exam questions (roughly half of the exam) by completing Dive Theory Online ($100).

Things That Haven’t Changed:

  • Same number of dives to “graduate”: 60
  • Dive Theory Online is still an optional study tool.
  • The Encyclopedia of Recreational Diving
  • Mapping project

Summary of Changes to Divemaster Materials

Revised materials (estimated ship date Dec 2010):

  • Divemaster manual – expanded from 200 pages to nearly 300. Includes new course information and functions as an additional study tool for the DM exam. Each chapter now includes a case study based on real scenarios which illustrate sound judgment and other leadership skills.
  • Divemaster DVD – now includes “demonstration quality” videos of all 20 scuba skills and the new skin diving skills (4) – plus new and updated footage.
  • Divemaster DVD (Pro edition) – revised to reflect new course content and incorporate new footage.
  • Divemater slates – revised slightly to reflect new course content
  • Skill evaluation slate – includes four new skin diving skills.
  • Divemaster exam/answer sheet/answer key – entirely updated

New materials (estimated ship date late Nov 2010):

  • Instructor cue cards
  • Prescriptive Lesson Guides (hooray!) – new PLGs integrated with standard lesson guides.
  • Divemaster eLearning – $200

Unchanged materials:

  • Encyclopedia of Recreational Diving (part no. 70034 book, 70833 DVD-ROM)
  • Scuba Tune-Up Guide book – now a recommended item (part no. 70097).
  • DSD cue card (must have 2009 revision of this item, part no. 60130)
  • Diving Knowledge Workbook – no longer required, but relevant study tool for DM, AI and Instructor exams (part no. 70214).

Discontinued materials:

Divemaster modular lesson guides

What about the current Divemaster materials?
We’ll transition to the new program over several months – similar to how we introduced the new IDC program. PADI Members should continue to use and sell DM materials in stock, but consider keeping a light inventory.

· The cut-off date for starting new candidates with the “old” DM materials is 1 July 2011. After this point, DM candidates and their instructors must use the new materials.

· TBA: what happens to Divemaster candidates who have not finished the “old” program by 1 July 2011

Where can I get more information?

Review the information on pages 2-5 of the 4th Quarter Training Bulletin

  • Available on the PADI Pro’s Site under Training Essentials
  • Also found in the back of the 4Q 2010 Undersea Journal

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