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Apprenticeship training course

Small vessel chief engineer (level 4)

Leading the engineering function for small vessels (less than 9000 Kilowatt and less than 3,000 Gross Tonnage) unlimited area.

Qualification level
Equivalent to higher national certificate (HNC).
Typical duration
48 months
Apprenticeship category
Engineering and manufacturing
Maximum funding
Maximum amount government will fund
for apprenticeship training.
Also known as
  • Small vessel chief engineer
  • Small vessel chief engineer officer
Skills an apprentice will learn
  • Take personal emergency action onboard a vessel. [MCA]
  • Respond to emergencies onboard a vessel. [MCA]
  • Take control of survival craft and rescue boats. [MCA]
  • Take charge of an engine room watch. [MCA]
  • Prepare and operate vessel propulsion machinery and ancillary systems. [MCA]
  • Operate vessel ancillaries and service machinery. [MCA]
  • Operate and adjust vessel electrical systems. [MCA]
  • Carry out maintenance to vessel electrical machinery and systems. [MCA]
  • Carry out maintenance to vessel mechanical machinery and systems. [MCA]
  • Maintain personal health, safety and environmental standards onboard a vessel. [MCA]
  • Maintain safe, legal and effective working practices onboard a vessel. [MCA]
  • Maintain and enhance productive working relationships onboard a vessel. [MCA]
  • Identify costs and create a draft budget for sign-off.
  • Apply project management techniques.
  • Identify, organise, and use resources to complete tasks.
  • Diagnose problems. Resolve or escalate problems in line with responsibilities.
  • Review work to identify improvements.
  • Communicate verbally and in writing with others for example, colleagues and contractors onboard or ashore.
  • Complete documentation for example, machinery space logbook and oil record book.
  • Write technical reports.
  • Use information technology for example, word processing, spreadsheets, email, and presentation.

Full information on Small vessel chief engineer (level 4) is available from the Institute for Apprenticeships and Technical Education.

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