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Marlins Maritime English eLearning for Engineers Launched

Effective communication is a mandatory requirement of the IMO STCW Convention, SOLAS, ISM Code and additional international standards to ensure the safety of crews and vessels. A breakdown in communication can have far-reaching consequences for the crew, the marine environment, the cargo, vessel and the ship operator. English is acknowledged to be the common working language of shipping internationally, however, crews have varying standards of Maritime English competence.

This new flagship programme from Marlins builds on our years of expertise as established global leaders in Maritime English assessment and training. The course also fulfils the IMO Model Course 3.17, Maritime English (General Maritime English) requirements for Maritime Engineers and is suitable for seafarers at elementary (A2) language level.

This original new course aims to develop the Maritime English level of seafarers, focussing on the specific communication needs of marine engineer officers and crew.

Through taking this course, seafarers will improve their English language and communication skills within multi-national crews, during inspections and in ship /shore communications.

Set on the “MV Marlin”, the course consists of five units, each with a different maritime theme which integrates grammar, maritime vocabulary, SMCP and pronunciation into a comprehensive self-study programme.

Marlins Maritime English specialists have devised a variety of highly creative, interactive speaking, listening and reading tasks to engage and motivate the learner throughout.

An in-built speech recording facility allows learners to compare their own speech with that of a native speaker and encourages self-directed practice.

Each unit concludes with a short revision task to reinforce the learning and provide feedback.

New Marlins Approved Test Centre

We are delighted to announce that Marlins has approved a new centre in Castel Volturno, Italy. Our brand new Marlins Approved Test Centre ‘Italian Maritime Academy Technologies’ is now offering the Marlins English Language Test as well as Marlins Test of Spoken English.

If the Italian Maritime Academy Technologies is the nearest Approved Test Centre to you, do not hesitate to contact them and book an English Language Test:

 

Contact number: +390815099303; +390815099487

Email: ima2006@libero.it

Location: Viale Degli Oleandri 1, 81030 Castel Volturno

Christmas wishes from Marlins

As the festive season is upon us, we find Marlins reflecting on a busy year throughout 2018. Our achievements would not have happened without the support and feedback from all of our clients. We hope that 2018 has been just as memorable for you, your colleagues and your loved ones. We will keep you informed about our new products and we have some exciting new developments that we will announce in 2019. We look forward to continuing our collaboration with you and would like to wish you all the best in 2019 from our team!

Marlins Approved Test Centres open in Panama and Ethiopia

Marlins approved test centres open in Panama and Ethiopia

Marlins has approved two new test centres in Panama and Ethiopia. The test centre in Panama is our first approved test centre in Central America.

The centres – E4Seafarers in Panama and Andromeda Marine Surveying and Consultancy PLC in Ethiopia will offer both Marlins UK Maritime and Coast Guard Agency (MCA) approved STCW testing and certification as well as English language testing.

Darren Cassidy, sales and marketing manager, Marlins said: “The provision of Marlins UK MCA approved assessment and certification continues to expand, with 200 Marlins approved test centres in 42 countries, we are reaching more seafaring communities than ever before.”

This was an important achievement explains Captain Francisco Tajú Guardia, general manager, E4Seafarers: “Seafarers from Central America can now demonstrate to ship operators and maritime administrators that they have been assessed on their ability to communicate in English – a requirement that has been given additional emphasis with the implementation of the STCW Manila amendments.”

Bisrat Hailu, general manager, Andromeda Marine Survey and Consultancy plc adds: “Our aim is to support Ethiopia’s efforts to become a force in the shipping industry by providing high-end training and consultancy services to existing as well as prospective seafarers in the country. We identified that the Marlins English language testing was a critical element in achieving this aim and believe that as a result of the assessment, it will improve their chances of getting jobs in the international shipping sector.”

New elearning courses help passenger ship crew cope under crisis

Safety at sea is relevant regardless of the vessel and it’s something that is top of mind for every seafarer. When it comes to passenger vessels there can be potentially hundreds of people who will come to rely on the crew in the event of a crisis therefore it’s critical that the crew can cope under pressure.

Marlins, in collaboration with V.Ships Leisure has developed two elearning courses to help prepare crew manage a crisis and meet the Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for Seafarers (STCW) Section A-V/2 paragraphs 1,2 and 3. The courses – Crisis Management and Human Behaviour and Crowd Management are approved by the UK MCA, Liberian Register and Dominican Maritime Authority.

The development team at Marlins place great importance on real life case studies to enhance the learning experience: “We create a learning experience that requires the participant to make decisions in role play scenarios that replicate as closely as possible the environment of a real life emergency on a passenger ship. This is critical so that in the event of a real emergency, they have an experience to draw on,” says Catherine Logie, Marlins manager.

Both elearning courses are available on the Marlins Learning Management System. The learner can study at their own pace, anywhere in the world and gain their approved STCW certificate quickly and easily. Something appreciated by seafarers:

“The training centre in Lima, Peru is far from my home so it was really convenient to be able to do the training online. The training was concise and comprehensive, giving me lots of explanations and showing some actual videos of those real incidents on board the ships. Thanks to Marlins I got my certificate without hassle.” Evelyn Icawalo

“I would like to thank Marlins for such good courses that can be reached easily. Each course is understandable even for people who don’t have good English. The best part is the videos and quiz at the end of each course.” Serkan Boyekin

“The Crowd Management course was very informative and it wasn’t too much information in one go. I liked being able to take the course on such short notice and it didn’t take that long to do – if I hadn’t been able to do this online, I would not have been able to join my new vessel.” Jan Hansrod

These courses are available to buy online now.

Marlins and Human Rights at Sea new Diversity and Inclusion at Sea course goes live

Marlins and Human Rights at Sea collaboration on a Diversity and Inclusion at Sea e-learning course is now available and being offered free of charge to individual seafarers for a limited time via our online shop.

The collaboration, which was announced in September 2016 at the inaugural International Maritime Human Rights conference in London, includes input from Apostleship of the Sea and the UK Royal Navy diversity team – Compass. It is the only e-learning course of its kind, which specifically tackles the topic of diversity and inclusion for seafarers.

The Diversity and Inclusion at Sea course supports and complements guidance developed by the International Chamber of Shipping and the International Transport Worker’s Federation on eliminating shipboard harassment and bullying.

Tineke Bosma, training development specialist at Marlins said: “The e-learning course is designed to help seafarers understand how to create an environment of respect on board. Learners are encouraged to reflect on individual differences and consider how to work together regardless of differences. We also provide tools to help our seafarers manage situations that could potentially cause conflict – that is a very important part of the learning and something that will help them beyond their time on board too.”

David Hammond, CEO Human Rights at Sea said: “This e-learning course is a first for the maritime sector, specifically aimed at tackling diversity and inclusion issues for seafarers. It uses realistic examples of situations to enhance the learning and helps seafarers cope with situations that make it otherwise hard for them to freely express themselves. I am very grateful for the various support provided by Compass and the Apostleship of the Sea.”

The course is available free of charge to individual seafarers until 30 June 2017 using the voucher code DIVERSITYATSEA. The course also features in the Marlins eLearning Suite for Seafarers, which is available to corporate subscribers.

Setting the course for non-seafarers in our industry

A new elearning course – Introduction to Shipping – has been developed by Marlins and is aimed at non-mariners working in the shipping industry.

Shipping relies on shore-based teams such as accountants, crewing personnel, travel agents, procurement teams, IT departments and operational personnel – most of whom will never have sailed yet they are essential to the smooth running of the industry.

There are also many management and leadership roles, which require skills that are transferable from other industry sectors: not having started a career at sea should not be a barrier to recruiting employees for such positions. But where does a non-mariner start to understand the complex world of shipping?

“Newcomers to shipping are often unaware of its scale, its culture and may have had no prior industry specific training. It can feel frustrating to work in a shore-based role alongside former seafarers who have years of shipping experience but little time to explain how it works. While the internet is full of information you have to know the questions to ask in the first place,” says Catherine Logie, Marlins manager.

The introduction to shipping elearning course helps newcomers to the industry by describing clearly what shipping is and how it functions, explaining the critical role shipping plays in transporting 90 per cent of world trade.

 

In addition, the course introduces life at sea, covering everything from work and rest hours, typical shift patterns, communication systems as well as the roles and responsibilities of each member of the crew and the activities that take place when vessels are in port.

Learners are also introduced to the international requirements in place to protect crew and the marine environment, explaining the critical role of a safety culture. To enhance the learning experience, the course includes audio commentary, interactive tasks and quizzes.

“The course is not designed to be a complete guide to shipping,” adds Catherine. “Nothing can be a substitute for real experience, however it can help to bridge the gap, create better understanding between shore and seafaring roles and give some clarity for newcomers. Life at sea is unique and if you haven’t sailed, it’s hard to imagine. Speaking from personal experience as a non-mariner myself, I wish I had had an easily accessible elearning course like this to give me a foundation when I first joined the industry. We see this as complementary to induction content for shore-based staff to set them on the right course from day one.”

Grupo Stier becomes first Marlins Approved Test Centre in the Canary Islands

Grupo Stier has become the first Marlins Approved Test Centre in the Canary Islands following a successful inspection last month.

The ship agency group, who also offer maritime and offshore training courses, will now be able to offer Marlins English Language testing as well as UK MCA approved STCW security testing (International Convention on Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for Seafarers).

“The inspection of potential test centres is an important part of the credibility a Marlins certificate offers to future employers,” explains Darren Cassidy, business development co-ordinator at Marlins. “Testing is conducted in a controlled environment, under supervision and with identity verification – providing assurance that test results accurately reflect the knowledge and ability of the candidate.”

“The Marlins process and achievement is one that has always been a goal for us, having experience first-hand with various cultures and nationalities,” says Grupo Stier centre manager, Terence O’Brien.

Ida Stier, chief executive officer, Grupo Stier adds: “We undertook the process to become a Marlins Approved Test Centre to help in the continued need to encourage seafarers and persons working in all maritime and offshore industries to increase and demonstrate their understanding of the working English language and to try and add to the continued assistance in the reduction of incidents and accidents at sea.”

Grupo Stier joins the wider Marlins Approved Test Centre network, which now extends to over 180 globally, offering seafarers access to accredited Marlins testing services in over 40 countries.

Supporting diversity and inclusion at sea

The maritime sector is one of great diversity, with people from all over the world coming together – both ashore and on board vessels. However, with diversity can come misunderstanding and it can often be hard for people to adjust to these new working environments.

We recently partnered with Human Rights at Sea to develop a course on ‘Diversity & Inclusion at Sea’, which for a limited time is being offered free of charge to individual subscribers as well as being included to subscribers of Marlins’ elearning suite for seafarers. This is our second partnership with Human Rights at Sea, with the earlier launch of a course on responding to the migrant crisis at sea, back in December last year.

One of the biggest issues is that seafarers are often away from home for long periods of time, which as Tineke Bosma, Marlins’ training development specialist, and a former seafarer, explains, “This can heighten sensitivities to diversity and inclusion issues on board, which can lead to some people feeling even more lonely, without the familiarity of friends and family around them.”

This new course helps seafarers understand how to create an environment of respect, reflecting on individual differences and consider how to interact with their colleagues, regardless of differences in culture, faith or gender. The course content was developed with input from Apostleship of the Sea and the UK Royal Navy diversity team, Compass. The course is being launched this week at the inaugural International Maritime Human Rights conference in London.

New elearning course helps seafarers understand the importance of Port State Control inspections

Our new elearning course aims to provide seafarers at all levels with the practical skills to prepare for a Port State Control (PSC) inspection.

With Port State Control inspections taking place worldwide, each maritime authority checks around 25 per cent of visiting vessels. Originating from the Netherlands, the aim of PSC inspections is to ensure shipboard living and working conditions meets the internationally agreed requirements.

Every year, each PSC region features a concentrated inspection campaign, which runs for three months from September to November. The focus is related to where high levels of deficiencies have been encountered by PSC officers or where new Convention requirements have recently entered into force. The campaign inspection runs alongside existing inspections. The focus from 1 September is the Maritime Labour Convention (MLC) looking at living and working conditions, accommodation, hours of work and rest/food for example.

Catherine Logie, Marlins manager says: “The key to successful inspections is adequate preparation, which is often overlooked; some crews just hope it will be alright on the day. We know from seafarers’ feedback, they often feel ill-prepared and this can be a source of unnecessary stress for them. We very much view PSC inspections as an important element in assuring the health of fleets; the course helps crew understand how to prepare and why it’s important, for their own personal welfare, to meet the requirements at all times – not just when visiting a port.”

Marlins is offering a combined elearning package for both the Maritime Labour Convention (MLC) and PSC inspections. These are available individually or as part of the Marlins eLearning Suite for Seafarers.