Ocean and Earth Science, National Oceanography Centre Southampton

Diving qualifications

The qualification you will need depends on the type of diving you plan to do. You could be diving for your own research for example, be buddy to a diving scientist or even be taken round your study site by a qualified diving instructor if your qualification isn't sufficient for working diving.

Experience in diving UK waters is also an important factor. The Ocean and Earth Sciences diving supervisor will pair up divers according to their ability and experience, with safety the prime consideration. If you dive regularly, you may be ready to join our scientific diving team straight away. If not, you could consider refresher training and/or some dives around our area with a local dive school or club.

There are several dive schools in the area that offer training for qualifications of the British Sub-Aqua Club (BS-AC) and the Professional Association of Diving Instructors (PADI). There are also a number of local sub-aqua clubs, including the University branch of the BS-AC, which offer training and varied programmes of diving.

If you want to learn to dive, it may be best for you to take basic training at a dive school and then join a sub-aqua club to gain experience. You must be aware, however, that diving is expensive and you will eventually need your own equipment (borrowing can only be a temporary solution) and suitable transport arrangements.

Thinking further ahead, to be paid to undertake scientific diving in the UK you will require HSE qualifications, BSAC Advanced or PADI Dive Master.