Prerequisite training information

If you are are interested in completing the HSE Professional SCUBA Course there are certain pre-requisites that we ask you to obtain prior to the start of the course. 

There is no hurry to get these qualifications as most can be obtained during the first year of your degree.  If you have never dived before it might be worth doing a ‘try-dive’ which is essentially a taster session to ensure diving’s for you. There are a number of local dive centres that offer the various training that students require. All of the below information will also be recapped at the start of the first year.

Aptitude test

This takes place during the November of your first year and is designed to assess water confidence by ensuring you are comfortable in a cold water environment. Additionally we ask you to try on a set of dive kit on dry land ensure you are happy with the weight of a SCUBA unit.

Recreational dive qualification

This can be PADI Open Water, BSAC Ocean Diver or equivalent.

If you are unsure, please contact the Marine Station. Tel: +44 1752 584660 / email:

Diving experience

As part of initial training divers usually complete four or five open water dives, in addition to this we would ask for five dives in UK waters in a drysuit. The most recent of which would need to be during the month prior to your HSE SCUBA Course.

Diving Equipment

During the training candidates will need to provide their own drysuit, undersuit (or form of thermal protection), hood and gloves for their personal use and be proficient in the buoyancy skills needed for diving in a drysuit. A drysuit roadshow is normally run prior to the Christmas vacation to allow students to meet manufacturers and suppliers and try on different types of suit before, possibly, purchasing often at discounted rate to normal regular retail price. 

If candidates wish to use them then ankle weights would also need to be brought with them for the course. 

All other equipment needed for the course will be provided by the Marine Station, although, students are welcome to bring their own fins and mask (particularly if prescription lenses are required). 

First Aid at Work (FAW)

This is a three day course that provides a comprehensive set of practical skills needed by first aiders and the ability, knowledge and confidence to deal with first aid emergencies. We ask all our students to have a first aid at work qualification so should the situation arise any member of the team can administer basic first aid should it ever be required, not just a St. John’s Ambulance or Lifeguarding qualification, the FAW qualification includes the UK legislation knowledge necessary for a working environment.

Oxygen administration course

There are various dive agencies that offer oxygen administration; it is normally a one day course that teaches how to use oxygen as a means to increase the effectiveness of first aid treatment in diving related situations.

HSE diving medical

Divers must have a valid certificate of fitness to dive under the Diving at Work Regulation 1997, which is issued by an Approved Medical Examiner of Divers (AMED). Should you feel you have anything in your medical history that may prevent diving we would suggest you speak to/complete the medical prior to undertaking any prerequisite training. 

Enrollment process

On arrival at University all students eligible to undertake the HSE SCUBA will be able to attend an induction talk during their first week providing all the necessary information on how to enroll on the course and subsequent steps that need to be taken. 

If this talk does not answer all the questions you have please feel free to contact us at the Marine Station.