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Enhancing the student learning experience by the use of engine room simulator desktop simulation in STCW competency courses

Modern Maritime Education and Training (MET) institutions grapple with a number of aspects within their training programmes due to the changing and diverse requirements placed on seafarer training across a multitude of jurisdictions, each with varying priorities and drivers. This is compounded by the continuous and asymmetric modernization within the global industry, requiring students to be abreast of modern technology associated with complex machinery in critical operations. In addition, the industry requires mixed mode training to diverse cohorts of entrants, with the programmes constrained by time, resources, and accessibility.

An effective way to impart specialist knowledge and skills to marine engineering students is through the use of modern engine room simulators (ERS) embedded within the different phases of their training. Many PC based ERS use a similar software to that employed on-board ships, thus exposing the students to authentic shipboard systems and assisting in preparing them to meet the real life challenges.

The Australian Maritime College (AMC) has progressively increased the use of ERS in marine engineering programmes, commencing at the pre-sea (induction) level to expose students to various systems before encountering them on board vessels during ship-board training, and enabling them to operate and deal with appropriate faults in such systems under varying conditions. This is a significant move forward from traditional classroom teaching, which is somewhat removed from the reality of engine-room operations; and from practical training on live equipment that can be restrictive in time, resources, and the ability to recreate critical situations. This training is raised to a higher level at the Watch-keeper level, as the students will progressively tackle more complex faults requiring them to integrate their knowledge from a range of subjects to solve them. Finally at the Management level, students are expected to manage the operations under a range of scenarios, and develop high level and innovative solutions to multiple problems requiring in-depth knowledge of the machinery, systems, underlying theory, and the operational environment.

These advantages come with challenges such as the extensive efforts required in the development of realistic and appropriate content, use of suitable and authentic assessment strategies, and continual upgrading of ERS facilities to reflect modern equipment and practices across a widely varying worldwide industry.

This paper reviews the innovations and developments in approach implemented at AMC in ERS training to ensure that students with diverse learner needs are equipped with the necessary skills and competencies as required by the STCW convention


Publication title

Proceedings of the 12th International Conference on Engine Room Simulators


N Güler, C Deniz, K Çiçek, S Aksoy, YE Şenol, B Zincir, Ç Kandemir






Australian Maritime College


UCTEA The Chamber of Marine Engineers

Place of publication


Event title

12th International Conference on Engine Room Simulators (ICERS12)

Event Venue

Istanbul, Turkey

Date of Event (Start Date)


Date of Event (End Date)


Repository Status

  • Restricted

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