Course Info

Certificate II in Maritime Operations (Marine Engine Driver Grade 3 Near Coastal)

National Course Code: MAR20418


The nationally accredited Certificate II in Maritime Operations (Marine Engine Driver Grade 3 Near Coastal) at TAFE NSW will give you the skills and knowledge you need to work in the Australian maritime industry in MED3 roles such as chief or second engineer on vessels less than 12 m in length.


Through a mix of theory and practical coursework, learn to:

  • Operate and service marine internal combustion engines, and propulsion and auxiliary systems
  • Operate deck machinery
  • Operate and maintain extra low and low voltage electrical systems and equipment
  • Fight fires onboard a vessel
  • Survive at sea using survival craft
  • Provide first aid


Develop the attributes to help you get ahead:

  • Adventurous and resilient spirit
  • Strong swimming ability
  • Dexterity and hand-eye coordination
  • Ability to work in a team


Completing this course provides you with:

  • A nationally recognised qualification at Certificate II level
  • First Aid Certificate
  • Eligibility to apply for a Marine Engine Driver Grade 3 Near Coastal (MED3) certificate of competency through AMSA

Career opportunities:

  • Chief or second engineer on vessels less than 12m in length.
  • Assistant under the direct supervision of the chief engineer
  • A worker in an engine room of a vessel up to 80 m long with propulsion power up to 3000 kW


  • Certificate III in Maritime Operations (Marine Engine Driver Grade 2 Near Coastal)
  • Certificate IV in Maritime Operations (Marine Engine Driver Grade 1 Near Coastal)
  • Diploma of Maritime Operations
  • Advanced Diploma of Maritime Operations

This course is superseded. You can still enrol in this course, and you will be contacted if you need to transition into the next version when it is available.

Course details

People who are successful in this field:

  • Enjoy being on the water
  • Are able to work in various weather conditions in a moving environment
  • Are capable of the physical demands of working in an engine room
  • Are good at problem-solving mechanical issues
  • Enjoy working varying times and hours

Assessments give you the opportunity to demonstrate what you have learned so far and to identify what knowledge or skills need further development. In this course you will undertake:

  • Knowledge assessments: short answer questions, assignment, closed book exam, multiple choice questions
  • Skills assessments: demonstration under observation with oral questioning on a vessel or approved machinery workshop

Assessments can also be offered flexibly, including online, to suit your work and study commitments.

  • Begin your study with a Certificate II in Maritime Operations and gain the foundational skills and knowledge you need to work in the maritime industry
  • Expand your core capabilities and develop a broad knowledge base with a Certificate III in Maritime Operations, and learn to operate effectively as a Grade 2 Marine Engine Driver (near coastal)
  • Advance your existing skills and knowledge with the Certificate IV in Maritime Operations, and learn to work as a chief engineer on vessels with propulsion power of up to 1500 kW
  • Master your studies with Diploma of Maritime Operations, and gain skills, experience and a qualification to become a chief engineer in Australian waters or work on foreign going ships in international waters

You will gain hands-on experience in:

  • Operating and maintaining an inboard motor with a diesel propulsion power of 150 kW
  • Using hand tools and power tools
  • Fire prevention and minimisation procedures including fighting a fire onboard a vessel, how to use fire extinguishers and breathing apparatus, and how to control a crowd

TAFE NSW is known for delivering up-to-date theory along with relevant, in-demand skills to ensure you are job ready.

In this course you will work on real-world projects, in simulated TAFE NSW environments, such as:

  • Identifying and correcting basic engine problems on a diesel inboard and outboard motor
  • Operating and monitoring the engine and auxiliary systems on a small vessel
  • Survival skills including life jacket techniques, jumping from a height, and what to do when an order to abandon vessel is given

TAFE NSW offers you a range of study environments to enhance your learning and employability, such as:

  • Swimming pool for survival practical
  • A boat (minimum of 150 kW)
  • Fire-fighting facility for situations relating to emergency procedures
  • Industry specific computer rooms
  • Simulated workplaces
  • Workshop
  • Study and presentation areas

Student facilities, amenities and support services include:

  • TAFE NSW Disability Support Service
  • TAFE NSW Language, Literacy and Numeracy (LLN) support
  • TAFE NSW Aboriginal Support; Learner support (ABE)
  • TAFE NSW Careers, Counselling and Pathways Service
  • Smarthinking - online access to a tutor

According to the Australian Industry Standards maritime industry reference committee, 75% of maritime employers reported a skills shortage in the industry between 2017 and 2018. A review of the data showed this shortage was primarily for domestic commercial vessel roles including marine engine drivers, small vessel (<35m) masters, deckhands, managers and educators.

The marine workforce is ageing and Australia is experiencing a maritime skills shortage.

The majority of maritime employers report experiencing a skills shortage in the industry, primarily in domestic commercial vessel occupations. Increasing shortages make now a great time to advance your maritime career with this qualification.

  • Nationally Recognised Training
  • Traineeship Allowed

This course is superseded

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