Find out About the PDSD STCW Course

Find out About the Online PDSD Course

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PDSD is the acronym for "Proficiency is Designated Security Duties". PDSD is a mandatory course for all seafarers working on vessels that comply with ISPS (International Ship & Port Facilities Securities) code. Commercial vessels 500 gross tons or more must have an ISPS-compliant security plan, and all persons that play an active role in the security activities must have completed a recognised PDSD course..

Proficiency in Designated Security Duties as per STCW Requirements

In order for the PDSD certificate to be accepted by the relevant maritime authorities, it must meet the requirements as set out by the STCW (Standards of Training, Certification, and Watchkeeping for Seafarers) convention table A-VI/6-2. The PDSD course must be completed at an accredited maritime training institution and the seafarer must have successfully completed all required assessments. It is also important to ensure that the course you enroll in is approved by the relevant authority under which you will be employed. Ie. a red-flagged vessel will require MCA approval.

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PDSD Learning Outcome


The PDSD course provides seafarers with the necessary knowledge and skills to carry out their designated security duties on board a vessel. Upon successful completion of the course, seafarers will be able to:

  • Understand the Ship Security Plan and their role in its implementation
  • Implement security procedures in accordance with the Ship Security Plan
  • Understand the security equipment and systems on board
  • Communicate effectively with other members of the ship's security team
  • Respond quickly and effectively to a security incident.

An example of some common duties included in the ships security plan are:

  • Performing security checks and patrols
  • Monitoring and controlling access to the vessel
  • Screening persons and their belongings before boarding
  • Carrying out bag and bundle searches
  • Operating x-ray and metal detectors
  • Undertaking random searches of cabins and public areas

PDSD Online Course

The PDSD course is also offered in an online version.

Taking the online course is a great option for crew members who have time constraints or other commitments that make it difficult to attend a traditional classroom-based course. The online course is also often cheaper than the classroom-based version.

Certain versions of this course are recognized by the MCA as well as other many other flag states in the maritime industry.

Always read carefully and check with the online course provider to ensure that the course certificate is recognized by the authority under which you will be employed as well as by the guidelines as set out in table STCW A-V/6-2.

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