Accreditation of Training Center

 

Any organization providing training or assessment to seafarers for certification under the STCW Convention, as amended, on behalf of the Republic of Palau must provide evidence that:

  • Such training or assessment is administered, supervised and monitored in accordance with section A-I/6 of the STCW Code; and
  • Those responsible for such training are appropriately qualified in accordance with that section for the type and level or training involved.

Furthermore, Regulation I/8 and Section A-I/8 of the Convention requires that an independent evaluation of knowledge, understanding, skills and competence acquisition and assessment of activities is conducted at intervals of not more than three (3) years to verify that:

  • All internal management control and monitoring measures and follow-up actions comply with planned arrangements and documented procedures and are effective in ensuring achievement of the defined objectives;
  • The results of each independent evaluation are documented and brought to the attention of those responsible for the area evaluated; and
  • Timely action is taken to correct deficiencies.

In view of the above, the process and procedures followed by this Administration for the accreditation of Training Institutions and/or approval of Courses conducted in accordance with the STCW Convention, as amended, have been established to fully comply with the relevant requirements of the above Convention. Maritime Training Institutions, when applying for accreditation by the Government of the Republic of Palau, are advised to strictly follow the guidelines of Marine Notice 17-038/2018.

Application

Maritime Training Institutions seeking accreditation by the Government of the Republic of Palau for training course(s) conducted in accordance with the STCW Convention, as amended, must forward to the Palau International Ship Registry (PISR) the following:

General information about the Training Institution

An illustration of the interrelations (reporting structure and lines of communication) of all personnel who manage, perform and verify work affecting the quality of the training’s activities.

Quality System Manual

The Training Institution must establish, document and maintain a quality system in order to ensure that all training, assessment and certification activities conform to specified requirements and comply with mandatory rules and regulations, guidelines and standards required by this Administration. To this end, a quality manual must be prepared covering all activities. The quality manual must include or refer to processes affecting the overall quality of the training activities, a description of the interaction between processes of the quality of the training activities and outline the structure of the documentation used in the quality system. As a minimum, the following must be included, if applicable:

Policy

The Training Institution’s management with executive responsibility must define and document its policy and objectives for quality of development and delivery of courses and programs and its commitment to quality which must be understood, implemented and maintained at all levels in the organization. The quality objectives must be measurable and consistent with the quality policy.

Responsibility and authority

The responsibility, authority and the interrelation of all personnel who manage, perform and verify work affecting the quality of the training activities must be defined, particularly for personnel with responsibility for:

  1. Initiating action to prevent the occurrence of non-conformities;
  2. Identifying and recording deficiencies related to training, assessment and certification;
  3. Initiating, recommending or providing solutions through designated channels;
  4. Verifying the implementation of solutions
  5. Controlling the process until the non-conformity or unsatisfactory condition has been corrected.

Management representative

The management with executive responsibilities must appoint a member of their own staff who has access to the highest level of management and irrespective of other responsibilities has definite responsibility and authority for:

  1. Ensuring that processes needed for the quality system are established, implemented and maintained in accordance with these instructions
  2. Reporting on the performance and on any need for improvement of the quality system to the organization management for review and as a basis for improvement of the quality system.
  3. Liaison with this Administration.

Management review

The management must review the quality system at defined intervals sufficient to ensure its continuing suitability, adequacy and effectiveness in satisfying the requirements of this guidance document and the Training Institution’s policy and objectives. This review shall include assessing applications for improvement and the need for changes to the quality management system, including the quality policy and quality objectives. Such reviews are performed at least annually. Records of such reviews are to be maintained and remain legible, readily identifiable and retrievable. Reviews consist of well-structured and comprehensive evaluations and must include, but not limited to, the following:

  1. Any non-conformities;
  2. The overall effectiveness of the system and its processes in achieving stated objectives;
  3. Considerations for updating the system in relation to changes in new regulations, market demands, etc.;
  4. Internal and external audit reports; and
  5. Reports from validating bodies.

Each training program must be reviewed on a regular basis and each time new regulations that affect the training program come into force. The reviews must include, but not limited to, the following:

  1. Review of the program criteria;
  2. Results from evaluation reports;
  3. Feedback from trainees;
  4. Assessment/examination results;
  5. Changes of qualified instructors, trainers, assessors; and
  6. Course objectives in relation to obtained results.

Any non-conformities and corrective actions implemented, conclusions and recommendations reached as results of the reviews must be documented. Records of the reviews must be maintained. A plan of action for necessary improvements must be established and documented.

A recommended way to fulfil the above requirements for a successful management review, could be a Control Self-Assessment (CSA) that is carried out annually.

Document and data Control

The Training Institution must establish and maintain documented procedures to control all documents related to the requirements of the quality system.

The documents and data must be reviewed and approved for accuracy by authorized personnel before they are issued. A master list or equivalent document control procedure identifying the current version status of documents must be established and be readily available to preclude the use of invalid and/or obsolete documents or data. The control as a minimum should ensure that:

  1. Appropriate documents data of pertinent issues are available at all relevant locations;
  2. Invalid and/or obsolete documents data are promptly removed from all points of issue or use or otherwise assured against unintended or accidental use;
  3. Changes to documents and data are being reviewed and approved by the same functions that performed the original review and accreditation, unless specifically designated otherwise;
  4. Up-to-date documents are available as necessary to meet requirements; and
  5. Training programs are delivered consistently.

As a minimum, the following documents must be controlled

  1. Quality manuals;
  2. Trainees’ manuals;
  3. Instructors’ manuals;
  4. Examination and assessment procedures and documents;
  5. Regulations and requirements that must be met;
  6. Relevant Legislation; and
  7. Examination regulations and syllabi.

Records

Records related to the development and updating procedures must be maintained to verify that procedures are followed and are as per the Training Institution’s requirements. The Training Institution must establish and maintain procedures for indexing, filing, maintenance and disposition of training records as defined by the Training Institution.

As a minimum, the Training Institution must establish and maintain procedures for indexing, filing, maintenance and disposition of the following training records:

  1. Trainees’ records;
  2. Reports from external validating bodies;
  3. External audit records;
  4. Internal audit records;
  5. Management review records; and
  6. Training program(s) review records.

Records maintained in accordance with the requirements of this section must be retained for a minimum period of ten (10) years.

Filing

The Training Institution must establish and maintain procedures for documenting and filing trainees’ and personnel’s records. These procedures must always ensure the accuracy and confidentiality of these files.

As a minimum, the following details must be included:

  1. Trainees’ Records
  2. Personal details
  3. Palau Seafarer’s Identification and Record Book Number
  4. Given Name
  5. Surname, if any
  6. Date of birth
  7. Place of Birth
  8. Nationality
  9. Identity Document
  10. Identity Document Number
  11. Medical Certificate
  12. Proof of sea service (If required by the entry standards of the training course.)
  13. Copy of qualifications (If required by the entry standards of the training course)
  14. Any information regarding trainee’s progress.
  15. Personnel
  16. Personal details
  17. Given Name
  18. Surname, if any
  19. Date of birth
  20. Place of Birth
  21. Nationality
  22. Identity Document
  23. Identity Document Number
  24. Sea Service, if any.
  25. Qualifications.

Purchasing Process.

The Training Institution shall ensure that purchased products conform to specified purchasing requirements. The type and extent of control applied to the supplier must be dependent upon the effect of the product on the training programs.

Evaluation of sub-contractors

The Training Institution defines and documents procedures that ensure that materials and services, which can affect the quality of training, conform to specified purchasing requirements whenever such are purchased from approved sub-contractors.

The Training Institution maintains records of approved sub-contractors. These records are to be regularly updated. The organization clearly states who has the responsibility and authority to purchase specified services and materials.

Approved sub-contractors may be limited to products and services that have a direct and significant effect on training, such as:

  1. Learning materials;
  2. Sub-contracted training;
  3. Sub-contracted instructors, trainers, assessors;
  4. Sub-contracted training organizations; and
  5. Training equipment.

Internal Audits

The management of the Training Institution must carry out internal audits at planned intervals to verify the implementation of the system and to determine the effectiveness of the system. The audit must also confirm that the training programs achieve their agreed or stated aims or being corrected when not reaching these goals.

The audits and follow-up actions must be carried out in accordance with documented procedures.

The results of the audits must be brought to the attention of the personnel having responsibility of the area audited. The management personnel responsible for the area must take timely corrective action on the non- conformities found during the audit.

Internal audits must be carried out in accordance with an audit plan, which must include the following:

  1. The status and importance of the processes and specified area of training programs being audited as well as the results of previous audits;
  2. Qualifications of personnel carrying out the audit;
  3. The scope of carrying out the audit (e.g. Organizational changes, changes in regulations, new instructors, assessors).

The audit findings, conclusions and recommendations must be submitted in documentary form for consideration to the appropriate members of the management.

The following items must be covered in the reporting and follow–up of audit findings:

  1. Factual evidence of non-compliance and possible reasons for such non- conformities;
  2. Appropriate corrective actions; and
  3. Implementation and effectiveness of corrective actions suggested in previous audits

Personnel performing work affecting the quality of the training courses shall be competent based on appropriate education, training skills and experience. The Training Institution must establish and maintain documented procedures for identifying training needs and provide for the training of all personnel performing activities affecting quality of education and training services. Records of training must be maintained.

  1. Planning and development of training programs
  2. The Training Institution must establish and maintain documented processes to control and verify the development of training courses to ensure that specified requirements are met.
  3. When a new training course is developed, the Training Institution must produce a plan to describe the activities and define responsibility for its implementation:
  4. The Training Institution shall determine the review, verification and validation that are appropriate to each design and development stage.
  5. Personnel involved in development and verification must be defined and the necessary information must be documented.
  6. Inputs relating to training courses must be determined and records must be maintained.
  7. Any applicable statutory and regulatory requirements must be identified and documented.
  8. The outcome of training courses must be verified against the requirements of the program and must contain or refer to acceptance criteria.
  9. At several stages of design, formal documented reviews need to be planned and conducted.
  10. The final design of the training program must be submitted to this Administration for verification.
  11. Prior to the implementation of a new training course, a test course must be performed as a validation to see that all requirements are met. A competent officer of this Administration must verify the aforesaid test course.
  12. All changes and modifications shall be identified, documented, reviewed and approved by authorized personnel before their implementation.

 

Delivery of training courses

The Training Institution must identify and plan the delivery of training programs. Processes and conditions, which affect the quality of delivery of training courses, must be carried out under controlled conditions. (Documented procedures defining methods of delivery and all materials used during delivery must be controlled).

  1. The maximum number of trainees must be stated in the training plan.
  2. The training program must define and document procedures for the following:
  3. Registration of participants;
  4. Control to ensure that participants fulfil any pre-defined criteria before enrolling; and
  5. Distribution of confirmation letters including relevant information such as:
  6. Program;
  7. Participant list; and
  8. Instructions for preparing the training program.

The Training Institution, before any training course is activated, must define the responsibility for checking the following:

  1. Premises (Classrooms, demonstration rooms, etc.) and location suit the purpose of the training program; and
  2. All audio-visual and training equipment/aids prior to starting any training activity.

The Training Institution must establish, maintain and document procedures for delivering training courses.

  1. As a minimum, the Training Institution must include and define procedures to ensure that:
  2. Instructors focus on the purpose of the training course ensuring a common understating;
  3. Information is collected of the trainee’s expectations and comparing these with the objectives of the training course;
  4. The contents of the training course are presented in a structured form;
  5. Evaluation models and criteria are clearly defined and made known to the trainees;
  6. At the beginning of each lesson/session, the trainer focuses on why the topic is important;
  7. Lessons/sessions are operated as per actual time frames;
  8. Ensure that trainer’s/instructor’s progression is as per what is planned;
  9. The trainer/instructor goes back to the objective of the training program at the final part of the training course and concludes whether it has been attained or not; and
  10. At the end of the training course, the trainer/instructor sums up the contents of the training course.

Where and when applicable, the Training Institution must establish, maintain and document procedures for the use of equipment in the educational process (fire, safety equipment, computers, instruments, etc.).

The Training Institution must establish, maintain and document procedures to ensure that:

  1. Equipment and systems are operated in a safe and efficient manner;
  2. Equipment and systems are maintained as per makers’ instructions;
  3. Operators (instructors, trainers, trainees) of such equipment and systems use relevant personal protective equipment; and
  4. Working conditions are suitable (ventilation, lighting, etc.).

The Training Institution must establish, maintain and document processes to ensure that any consumables are stored appropriately and in accordance with suppliers’ instructions, rules, regulations and recommendations.

Where the use of equipment systems and their consumables lead to pollution of the environment, procedures need to be put in place to ensure that this pollution is cleaned up.

Evaluation of training Courses and trainees

The Training Institution must establish, maintain and document processes for the evaluation of the training courses. The required evaluation and the related records must be documented in detail.

Procedures must be established requiring the training course manager or instructor to write an evaluation report with suggested actions for improvements based on, but not limited to, the following information:

  1. Results from trainees’ tests and or review questions;
  2. Results from scores and evaluation forms;
  3. Feedback or comments from trainees; and
  4. Contents of training courses related to the duration.

The above report must be distributed to all personnel involved, including management and be filed accordingly.

A checklist, relevant to every training course, must be developed to ensure that the following issues have been covered:

  1. Purpose,
  2. Objectives,
  3. Contents,
  4. Methods,
  5. Evaluation,
  6. Trainee conditions, and
  7. Frame conditions.

Procedures to correct any discrepancies need to be established and maintained.

The Institution also needs to establish and maintain procedures for the final assessment, monitoring, test or examination, which is laid down to evaluate the performance of the trainees. Where necessary, such procedures need to include the following:

  1. Instruments-tools for assessment;
  2. Examination methods;
  3. Security arrangements;
  4. Surveillance during examinations;
  5. Validity and consistency of assessment methods;
  6. Examination timetable and other appropriate information for the trainees;
  7. Test-examination is consistent with the objective and contents of the training activity.
  8. INFORMATION FOR EACH TRAINING COURSE

For each training course, a separate folder must be submitted including the information shown below. The information required under this section must be in the language in which the training course is delivered.

Notwithstanding the above, if the training course is not delivered in English, a translation of the required documents in the English language must be submitted.

Aims

Short description of the aims of the training course, which includes reference to relevant legislation, requirements, guidelines and description of why this training is needed.

Objective(s)

Short description of the objectives of the training course indicating the expected results after the completion of training.

Entry standards

Description of the entry standards required for admission to the training course. As a minimum, the following must be included:

  1. Minimum age,
  2. Medical fitness,
  3. Certificate(s) or Training documentary evidence(s), if applicable, and
  4. Sea service, if applicable.

Staff Requirements

Description of the minimum qualification and experience required for the instructors, supervisors and assessors.

As a minimum, instructors, supervisors and assessors must:

  1. Have an appropriate level of knowledge and understanding of the competence(s) for which the training is being conducted;
  2. Be holders of an appropriate certificate in the task(s) for which the training is being conducted;
  3. Have gained practical experience in the task(s) for which the training is being conducted; and
  4. Must, if conducting training using a simulator,
  5. Have received appropriate guidance in instructional techniques involving the use of simulators; and
  6. Have gained practical operational experience on the specific type of simulator being used.

In addition to the above, assessors must:

  1. Have completed an approved training course in techniques related to the assessment of seafarers, and
  2. If conducting assessment involving the use of simulators, must have gained practical assessment experience on the specific type of simulator.

Course intake limitations

The maximum number of trainees attending each session of the training course must be specified. As a minimum, the maximum trainee/trainer and trainee/assessor ratios must be specified for both practical and theoretical training.

Specimen of training documentary evidence to be issued.

A specimen of the training documentary evidence to be issued must be forwarded to the Administration. On each document, as a minimum, the following must be included:

  • Serial Number;
  • Name of the Institution;
  • Name and Surname of the trainee;
  • Seafarer’s Identification and Record Book number of the trainee;
  • Duration of the training;
  • Title of the training program;
  • Regulation(s) and Section(s) of the STCW Convention under which the training has been conducted; and
  • A statement that the document in question is not valid for sea service.

Teaching facilities and equipment

List and number of the facilities and equipment being used for the training program (i.e. Classrooms, life rafts, lifeboats, firefighting equipment, etc.). It should be noted that the Training Institution will be requested to demonstrate that it can provide or have access to the facilities and equipment.

Teaching aids

List of teaching aids to be used during the training course (i.e. Course Manual, Overhead projection transparencies, video tapes, multimedia, etc.).

Training aids

List and number of the training aids to be used during the training course (i.e. models, equipment, samples and drawings, etc.).

Publications available to trainees

List and number of the publications relevant to the training course available to trainers and trainees.

IMO References

List and number the IMO publications relevant to the training program.

Safety Routines

Description of the safety measures and precautions to be taken during the training course, if any.

Course outline and timetable

Lectures: A short description of the procedure to be followed for the delivery of the training course

Course outline A table listing the competencies and areas of knowledge, understanding and proficiency, together with the estimated total hours required for lectures, demonstrations and practical. The teaching staff should note that timings may be adapted to suit individual training groups, depending on their experience, ability, equipment and staff available for training. However, the total time of the training program should not be reduced.

Course timetable It should be noted that the training program should be limited to six (6) hours of lectures or demonstrations or practical exercises per day.

Detailed Teaching Syllabus The detailed teaching syllabus must be written in a learning objective format in which the objective describes what the trainee must do to demonstrate that the competence has been achieved and the knowledge has been transferred,

Instructor’s manual and Trainees’ handouts:

Instructor’s manual The instructor’s manual should provide guidance on the material to be presented during the course and should be organized in a learning objective format following the structure of the detailed teaching syllabus.

Trainees’ handouts The trainee’s handouts should be written in simple language and structured in accordance with the detailed teaching syllabus.

Lesson Plan The lesson plan should be structured in accordance with the detailed teaching syllabus and should provide adequate guidance to the instructor.

Assessment

Time of examination The time of the examination should be identified, i.e. examinations will take place at the end of the course, end of each competence, end of each day or end of each semester.

Type of examination Description of the type of examination conducted (written précis, multiple–choice, simulator-based, PC-based, oral or practical).

Scope of examination Description of the scope of examination which explains how the trainees’ performance will be evaluated throughout the course. It should also cover surveillance during examinations.

Time of progress assessment(s) The time of the progress assessments should be identified, i.e. progress assessments will take place at the end of each competence, end of each day, end of each semester.

Type of progress assessment(s) Description of the type of progress assessment(s) conducted. (Written précis, multiple– choice, simulator-based, PC-based, oral, practical).

Scope of progress assessment(s)

Description of the scope of progress assessment(s).

Determination of final grade.

Explain how the trainer(s) will determine final grade by proportioning written and practical scores as appropriate.

Accreditation:

Document verification.The accreditation procedure to be followed by this Administration for the accreditation of a Training Institution and approval of a training course conducted in accordance with the relevant provisions of the STCW Convention, as amended, is as follows:

The application form, shown in Appendix 1, and all documents submitted with the application will be reviewed to verify the completeness of the information required.

It must be stressed that, if the information submitted is not complete, the applicant will be informed accordingly, and the process of accreditation will be suspended until all information required has been submitted.

Assessment of the documentation

After a detailed examination of all the information submitted and verification of compliance with all applicable requirements of this Administration has been carried out, the course outline will be approved, and the applicant will be informed accordingly.

If the qualifying conditions of this Administration are not met, the applicant will be informed accordingly and requested to make the necessary corrections if desired.

Review of the first training course in action

Upon review of the course outline, designated officer(s) of this Administration will attend the first training course to monitor compliance with the quality system implemented by the Training Institution and the applicable requirements of this Administration.

Upon completion of the first training course, the attending officer(s) will make available to the management of the Training Institution an evaluation report for its information and action if any.

Any deficiencies/non-conformities found during the implementation of the training course must be rectified/closed within the time frame to be specified by the attending officer(s) of this Administration.

It is noted that the Maritime Training Institution concerned will be requested to cover all expenses associated with the evaluation of the first training course.

Scheduled Audits

Training Institutions accredited by the Government of the Republic of Palau are subject to scheduled periodical audits at least once in every three (3) year period, supplemented by an intermediate audit at least halfway through the above period.

The scheduled periodical/intermediate audits are carried out in order to ensure that:

  1. All internal management control and monitoring measures and follow-up actions comply with planned arrangements and documented procedures and are effective in ensuring achievement of the defined objectives;
  1. The results of each independent audit are documented and brought to the attention of those responsible for the area evaluated; and
  2. Timely action is taken to correct deficiencies, if any.

Upon completion of the scheduled periodical/intermediate audit, the Administration will make available to the management of the Training Institution the audit report for its information and action, if any.

Any deficiencies/non-conformities found during the audit must be rectified/closed within the time frame to be specified by the attending officer(s) of the Administration. Nevertheless, all deficiencies/non-conformities found must be rectified/closed within three months from the date of the completion of the audit.

It should be noted that the Maritime Training Institution concerned is requested to cover all expenses associated with the scheduled periodical/intermediate audit.

 

Unscheduled Audits

In addition to the scheduled periodical/intermediate Audits, this Administration will also carry out unscheduled audits of the Training Institutions accredited by the Government of the Republic of Palau at irregular intervals to ensure that the quality system implemented is maintained in a satisfactory manner.

Upon completion of the unscheduled audit, the Administration will make available to the management of the Training Institution the audit report for its information and necessary action if any.

Any deficiencies/non-conformities found during the audit must be rectified/closed within the time frame to be specified by the attending officer(s) of the Administration. Nevertheless, all deficiencies/non-conformities found must be rectified/closed within three months from the date of the completion of the audit.

Communication of information

Information to be communicated prior to the commencement of each training course: No later than the same day of the commencement of an approved training course, the Training Institution must convey via e-mail to the Palau International Ship Registry information regarding the timetable of the scheduled training program and the details of the instructors and assessors who will conduct the training. The information to be conveyed should in the format shown in Appendix 4 of Marine Notice 17-038/2018 , personal details of all the trainees who will participate in the training course.

Information to be communicated at the completion of each training course.

Upon completion of each training course, the Training Institution must forward via e-mail to the Administration the results of the training course.

In addition to the above, the following information must also be submitted for each trainee who successfully completed the training program for the relevant Palau certificate or training documentary evidence to be issued:

  1. Copy of the certificate-attestation-documentary evidence issued by the Training Institution;
  2. Two passport size photographs;
  3. Applicable fees; and
  4. Copy of the Medical fitness certificate, if the trainee is a holder of a valid Palau Seafarer´s Identification and Record Book and Sea Service Record Book).
  5. Copy of the Medical fitness certificate and an application for the issuance of a Palau Seafarer´s Identification and Record Book and Sea Service Record Book, if the trainee does not hold a valid Palau Seafarer´s Identification and Record Book and Sea Service Record Book.

Notification of any significant changes

The Training Institution must notify this Administration of any significant changes in the arrangements for training and assessment or the quality standard implemented by the Training Institution within thirty (30) days from the occurrence of such changes.

Suspension / withdrawal of the accreditation

Accreditations for Tainting Institutions issued by this Administration may be terminated or suspended with a thirty (30) days written notice communicated to the Training Institution concerned if one of the following occurs:

  1. Refusal of the Training Institution to allow the inspection or review of its facilities and procedures
  2. Refusal of the Training Institution to cover the expenses associated with the audit of Training Institution and/or training course(s) or
  3. Failure of the Training Institution to meet its obligations under this document or any other relevant requirements of this Administration.