Over the past 12 months there has been a 71 per cent overall pass rate for yacht deck exams. This was announced at the Professional Yachting Association’s (PYA) Headline Sea Changes Forum during the Monaco Yacht Show. Lars Lippuner, PYA council member, business development manager at Warsash Superyacht Academy and representative of the International Association of Marine Investigators (IAMI), shared what the industry has seen over the past 12 months in the yacht deck examination arena.

In the past year, 382 exams have taken place (more than one a day), which equates to a 62 per cent increase from the 236 exams of the previous year, and 1,502 exam scripts have been written.

Interestingly, the celestial navigation exam, new since 1 January, 2014, has seen a 76 per cent pass rate – the highest of any of the yacht deck exams, and higher than the 71 per cent average exam pass rate (which, in fact, is two per cent lower than that of the previous year).

In the past, The Crew Report has heard complaints of delays from the day of taking the exam to receiving the final mark. Lippuner announced there have been improvements in this area and marks are being release between two an three weeks after an exam sitting.


The celestial navigation exam, new since 1 January, 2014, has seen a 76 per cent pass rate – the highest of any of the yacht deck exams.


But with only 3.9 students on average sitting an exam (compared with 4.6 last year), resources are evidently stretched. There have been 118 exams with just one candidate and 48 exams with just two candidates.

Lippuner requested those 29 per cent taking resits tag on their resit to other exams taking place – last year just 32 exams were tagged onto other ones. In the words of Lippuner, candidates “need to be self policing”.

Following Lippuner’s presentation, he shared with The Crew Report the full statistics (all centres are anonymous), and told The Crew Report: “You will see that there is a huge number of exams and that, on average, there are less than four [candidates] per exam. More than a third of the exams have only one candidate sitting it. This is huge waste of resources and hence all centres should be encouraged to schedule single resits only when exams for a larger group of candidates for the same module has been scheduled already.”