Advanced Courses

We offer a natural progression of courses, from beginner to advanced, for any boater.   These are comprehensive, in-depth courses that typically run between 6 and 8 weeks.  Click below to learn more.

  • America's Boating Course - America's Boating Course gives you the knowledge to decide what type and size boat you need, what to do when meeting another boat in a crowded waterway, and how to recognize and handle hazards.  Become a more competent boater, learn from the best, and take America's Boating Course today.
  • Seamanship - covers basic deck seamanship, marlinspike (knots and ropes), anchoring and rafting, basic boat care and maintenance, and nautical and United States Power Squadron customs and etiquette.
  • Piloting and Navigation - Five piloting and navigation courses are offered by United States Power Squadron. The first four below are designed to be taken in sequence because each builds on skills taught in the previous course. The last one,Electronic Navigation, can be taken at any time. However, you should be familiar with basic charting concepts such as latitude, longitude, the compass, course plotting, and time/distance calculation, to get the most out of the course.
    • Piloting -  is the first of the advanced navigational classes focusing on techniques for piloting a boat in coastal and inland conditions. The course emphasizes planning and checking along with the use of GPS for determining position, and introduces digital charting along with traditional charting, compass and dead reckoning skills. Plotting, labeling, use of the compass, aids to navigation and a host of related topics are included in this all-new approach to coastal and inland piloting.
    • Advanced Piloting is the final part of the inland and coastal navigation series. This material continues to build on the base developed in Piloting, and includes practical use of additional electronic navigation systems and other advanced techniques for finding position. Among topics covered are: finding position using bearings and angles, collision avoidance using GPS and RADAR, what to do when the electronics fail, tides, currents and wind and their effect on piloting, and electronic navigation with GPS, chart plotters, RADAR, autopilots, etc. Application of course lectures takes place through practical in-class and at-home exercises.
    • Junior Navigation - Celestial navigation is the first of two courses in advanced off-shore boating topics, with an emphasis on Celestial Navigation in the GPS age, an essential backup when off-shore. It is designed as a practical, how-to course based on sun sight taking using a sextant as a confirmation to GPS navigation. The more advanced techniques for other celestial bodies and sights are for study in the subsequent Navigation Course. JN subject matter includes: basic concepts of celestial navigation; how to use the mariner's sextant to take sights of the sun; the importance and techniques of accurate time determination; use of the Nautical Almanac; how to reduce sights to establish lines of position (LOPs); and the use of GPS, special charts, plotting sheets and other navigational data for offshore positioning and passage planning.
    • Navigation - Celestial navigation  is the second part of the study of offshore navigation. It further develops the student's skills and understanding of celestial theory. The student is introduced to additional sight reduction techniques for bodies other than the sun. The student develops greater skill and precision in sight taking, positioning and the orderly methods of carrying on the day's work of a navigator at sea. Of particular interest and importance is the navigation software that is explained and used in practices for planning and navigating in the offshore environment with the included software. Offshore navigation using minimal data and/or equipment, such as when on a disabled vessel or lifeboat is also studied.
    • Electronic Navigation -  introduces GPS technology from the most basic receiver to chart plotter systems for navigation on board. The process of navigating by establishing waypoints and routes, and then running the planned courses, is demonstrated. Further, electronic charting software for the desktop computer is examined, with creation of waypoints and routes on the desktop and subsequent download to the onboard unit. Despite differences among the various manufacturers' offerings, a thorough discussion of the features being made available is included. Special attention is paid to apps for tablets and smartphones that provide the electronic navigation function at the helm, for relatively little cost.
  • Boat systems operation and maintenance - Two areas of prime interest to boaters are operation and maintenance of their mechanical and electrical systems aboard.
    • Engine Maintenance Modern engines offer high reliability and good performance through the use of computerized systems for fuel delivery and engine timing. Most of these systems are "black boxes that can no longer be serviced by weekend mechanics with ordinary tools. The Engine Maintenance course covers those repairs that do-it-yourselfers can still perform, teaches how to diagnose problems that might be beyond your ability to fix, and how to share information with your mechanic so the right repairs get performed. The Engine Maintenance course also covers basic mechanical systems such as drive systems (propellers), steering systems, and engine controls. The last chapter discusses solutions you might use to problems that could occur while afloat and away from a repair facility. Gasoline, diesel, and outboard engines are treated independently in this chapter.
    • Marine Electrical Systems - (MES) covers the practice of wiring your boat, including boat electrical wiring practices and diagrams, direct and alternating current power, galvanic and stray current corrosion, and lightning protection. Troubleshooting is emphasized throughout, so students should feel comfortable performing even tricky wiring tasks after passing this course.
    • Marine Communication Systems -  (MCS) is an in-depth, nine chapter review of communications systems available to the recreational boater. Radio history and spectrum definitions are presented along with definitions of radio circuits that the student should learn, to choose the best communications method for his/her situation. One chapter is devoted to the Global Maritime Distress and Safety System (GMDSS) and another to FCC Rules and regulations. The remaining chapters cover High Seas radio (MF/HF and satellite communications) and other systems such as Family Radio Service transceivers. There is also a chapter on troubleshooting of radio installations.
  • Weather - For boaters, knowing the forecast isn't enough; you need to understand its impact on you and your boat.  Gain the knowledge and confidence to venture out on the water.  Be a responsible skipper, protect your friends and family and take this course today.
  • Sail Learn about basic sailboat designs and nomenclature, rigging, and safety from experienced USPS sailors.  Then tackle the physical aspects of sailing forces and techniques, sail applications, marlinespike, helmsmanship, and handling of difficult sailing conditions.  This course will benefit non-sailors as well as novice and experienced sailors.
  • Cruising and Cruise Planning Want to take a "road trip" on the water?  Gain the confidence and practical skills needed to explore ports and coves for a weekend or weeks at a time.  Take Cruising and Cruise Planning and join your fellow boaters for raft-ups and rendezvous up the river, down the bay, and along the coast.
  • Instructor Developmentteaches effective communication skills for not only United States Power Squadron instructors but everyone, covering various methods of presenting information to others, effective use of audiovisual aids (including PowerPoint), etc.

If one or more of these courses interest you, locate a course in your area. If you're a United States Power Squadron member, contact your Squadron Educational Officer and take a course at your squadron rate. We hope to see you soon!

 

Nashville Boating

Upcoming Events and Educational Opportunities:

See Events Calendar for details for these events and more.

8 May - TWRA Presentation

20 May - Vessel Safety Inspection and Cook Out

3 June - Vessel Safety Inspection at Cedar Creek Yacht Club

10 June - Raft Up - Spencer Creek

21 August - Solar Eclipse Raft Up

 

UPCOMING EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES - No Dates at this time

 

SAFETY TIP ON ELECTRICAL SHOCK DROWNING (ESD) BY DIY AC SAFETY TEST FOR BOAT AND DOCK OWNERS.  All boat and dock owners must check your AC electrical system for stray current that could cause electrical shock and potential death to swimmers.  It could save a life.

 

2016 Bridge Leadership

Commander -

Cdr Ray Alley, AP-IN

Squadron Education Officer -

Lt/C John Miller, AP-IN

Administrative Officer -

Secretary -

Lt/C Barry Cleveland, AP

Treasurer -

Lt/C Bobby Naylor, AP

Assistant Secretary for I.T. -

Vacant

Flag Lieutentant -

 

Member-at-Large -

1/Lt Jane Malatak, P

P/C Bruce MacDonald, AP

1/Lt Jack Rubey, S

Rules Committee Chair -

P/C Ken Holbert, AP

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