Applying to the Scientific Diver Program

How to become a Diver in Training.

If you are a new applicant to the FAU Dive Safety Program (DSP) and are not previously a sanctioned Scientific Diver at another University, you will need to apply to enter the program, with the Diving Safety Officer. The Scientific Diving Safety Program is open to all FAU students, staff, and faculty who participate in scientific research diving while at FAU. Scientific Diver status is required before conducting any diving activities under FAU auspices either as a teacher, student, or researcher.

To enter the Program you must hold a minimum of basic scuba certification from any nationally or internationally recognized agency. You must also be in a field of study where scientific diving certification will be of practical value or is essential to your work while at FAU.

A number of steps must be met to be fully sanctioned as a scientific diver and on average the training process will require several months to complete. Periodically a structured intensive course will be offered but for divers who need certification immediately a self-paced program can be completed at the participants and DSO's discretion. Whether the course is offered live or through the self paced method the steps are same.

  1. Fill out an Application to the Scientific Program, submit it online (.pdf or .doc) or in person to the DSO and arrange an interview with the DSO.
  2. Complete and submit remaining forms and documents to the DSO online or in person. Please do not submit originals. Forms and documents include:
    a. FAU Release and Liability Waiver.
    b. Equipment Inspection Statement of Understanding.
    c. Receipt proving personal gear has been inspected within the previous
    one year. Note: Gear less than one year old does not need to be
    d. Copy of all Dive Certifications held.
    e. Copy DAN membership and insurance.

  3. A diving medical physical is required in order to dive at FAU. There are three parts to the Medical form. Appendix A Part 1-3 must be completed and given to the examining physician. Appendix A Part 2 must be signed by the physician and faxed from their office directly to the FAU DSO at 561-297-2210. Note: it is not necessary for the physician to send copies of test results.

  4. A current certification in CPR/First-Aid is required. If you have a certification (usually less than 2 years old), submit a copy. If your certification is not current, you may sign up for one of the monthly one-day classes offered through EHS. For a schedule of upcoming CPR/First-Aid classes, follow the link for Training on the left side menu.

  5. A current certification in DAN Emergency Oxygen First-Aid is required. If you have a current certification (less than 2 years old), submit a copy. If your certification is not current, you may sign up for one of the half-day classes offered every other month through EHS. For a schedule of upcoming DAN Emergency Oxygen First-Aid classes, follow the link for Training on the left side menu.

  6. AAUS and OSHA requires scientific divers to receive 100 hours of dive training including safety and methodology. FAU offers a Five Module training course available on Blackboard. Prospective divers can gain access to this course by requesting to the DSO via email to have their name added. Alternatively, prospective divers can wait until a formal course is offered and enroll.

  7. Two or more pool sessions will be required with the DSO which will include at a minimum a scuba review and basic rescue techniques. Pool sessions are conducted periodically when at least 3-4 participants or more are available.

  8. An open water rescue evaluation is required. Evaluations are conducted periodically when 3-4 or more participants are available. An introduction to basic underwater compass navigation and use of underwater lift bags is also conducted.

  9. One open-water checkout dive is required with the DSO.

Once the above requirements are met, a Scientific Diver-In Training certificate is issued. A total of 12 supervised training dives must be completed under the direction of a FAU Scientific Diver. The DSO supervised rescue evaluation and checkout dive can be logged as 2 of the required 12 dives. Ten additional dives must be logged. Typically it is up to the DIT to make arrangements with a FAU Scientific Diver (usually their major professor), or to participate in regularly scheduled training dives offered by the DSO. Once 12 training dives have been logged the DIT is fully sanctioned as a Scientific Diver and may conduct independent dives within the boundaries of their training and experience under FAU auspices.

Required forms can be downloaded at: