The Merchant Navy Training Board (MNTB) works to ensure that UK training of seafarers is seen as a world-leading standard and focuses on delivering the skills needed by the shipping sector.

Modernising training 

Often it is not possible to replicate decision-making environments on board vessels, especially in high-traffic areas or restricted visibility where experience is essential. 
Simulators can provide a logical progression of events, experiences, training, and achievement of objectives in a way that may not be possible on board a ship. 

Using simulators will provide trainee seafarers with the necessary underpinning knowledge to familiarise them with the bridge watchkeeping duties. 

Currently operating as a pilot, the aim is to roll out the wider use of simulators to all UK cadets to set them on a level playing field, equipping them with the skills and competence they need to enhance their sea time experience. 

Electronic records 

It is essential that cadets have accurate records of their training and qualifications. Storing these electronically will make it easier for designated Shipboard Training Officers and supporting Training Officers to approve tasks. It will also be easier for training management companies, the MNTB and the MCA, to monitor students’ progress at sea, which is a significant part of their training. 

This new approach means content, changes to regulatory requirements, and supporting documentation can be uploaded at any point and used to store certificates. In time there is also the potential to be used as a personal development tool for the life of the seafarer’s career.

This system is due to be trialled in September 2023.