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windwalker 08-15-2013 01:57 AM

ASA Exams
 
I'm currently studying for the written portion of the keelboat and BCC exams.

I'm sadly still a ways away from passing the skills portion on either.

Anyone else?

Elizabeth

CaribDream 08-15-2013 07:56 AM

My wife and I did ASA Basic Keelboat, Coastal Cruising, and Bareboat Charter certs this year. We chose a school that specialized in couples, and lived aboard with out instructors. It was a great help that we were the only students, and because we studied very diligently for a few months before going it helped immensely. I do not believe we could have passed had we not done all the study work ahead of time.

We sailed with our instructors from Miami to Islamorada, and everything was 100% hands on. Lectures were done either before we made way in the morning, or during longer sails. We typically sailed and drilled different skills 8 hours a day with nice breaks at lunch. The best part about this style of school for me was that my wife and I didn't have to share hands-on time or instructor time with other students. Also, we covered lots more than just the ASA coursework as we got to address lots of live aboard questions we had that were specific to our personal situation.

If you can find a school like this, I would HIGHLY recommend it. We felt that it was worth every penny we spent and more.

Rhys05 08-15-2013 08:12 AM

Re: ASA Exams
 
CaribDream-

We are looking to do something like this this winter, who did you use? PM me the details if you don't want to say in the open forum.

Thanks!

Brandon

Quote:

Originally Posted by CaribDream (Post 1074213)
My wife and I did ASA Basic Keelboat, Coastal Cruising, and Bareboat Charter certs this year. We chose a school that specialized in couples, and lived aboard with out instructors. It was a great help that we were the only students, and because we studied very diligently for a few months before going it helped immensely. I do not believe we could have passed had we not done all the study work ahead of time.

We sailed with our instructors from Miami to Islamorada, and everything was 100% hands on. Lectures were done either before we made way in the morning, or during longer sails. We typically sailed and drilled different skills 8 hours a day with nice breaks at lunch. The best part about this style of school for me was that my wife and I didn't have to share hands-on time or instructor time with other students. Also, we covered lots more than just the ASA coursework as we got to address lots of live aboard questions we had that were specific to our personal situation.

If you can find a school like this, I would HIGHLY recommend it. We felt that it was worth every penny we spent and more.


CaribDream 08-15-2013 08:16 AM

One other thing, the school we chose had a "no yelling" policy. This was invaluable for calming my wife's worries and keeping our instruction less stressful. My background tends to make me more used to getting yelled at, my wife - not so much. And to be truthful, I very much appreciated the no yelling policy too. Our instructor was 110% upbeat, calm, and encouraging. I asked him how he stayed so level headed with students at the helm of his boat. His reply - "Part of my job is making sure I never put you in a situation that I don't feel confident that you are fully capable of handling. You might feel unsure in your ability when you try something the first time, but I make sure you have learned the skills needed before I introduce something new. I'll slow down if I ever feel you aren't fully getting it."

This stuck with us, and eased our anxiety and fears of messing up. In hindsight, finding the right instructor seems super important.

CaribDream 08-15-2013 08:34 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Rhys05:1074216
CaribDream-

We are looking to do something like this this winter, who did you use? PM me the details if you don't want to say in the open forum.

Thanks!

Brandon

I don't mind giving their name because I was so happy with them. I used Capt. Harold Ochstein, Island Dreamer Sailing School in Miami. Tell him Tim & Sharon recommended them.

PaThomas123 08-15-2013 10:13 AM

Re: ASA Exams
 
When I took ASA 101 I had not taken a “test” in 20 years but did well after reading the book
It was a very straight forward test and the answers are in the book you just have to remember them.
Now the 103 and 104 were a bit trickery but again listen to the instructor and read read read and you should be fine. East Carolina Sailing in New Bern is a great place to learn Michael is a great teacher
Good luck

nolatom 08-15-2013 11:44 AM

Re: ASA Exams
 
I teach Basic Keelboat part-time.

The test is pretty straightforward if you've studied the book, and especially the questions at the end of each chapter.

I think each instructor has their own style, and students have their own learning style too. I tend to follow the "let's sail first, then you'll see afterward that the book is 'right'" approach, with a minimum of initial chalk-talk. the boat makes a better "blackboard", and you avoid "MEGO"*

*("my eyes glaze over")

Good luck and enjoy the moment, whether afloat underway, at the dock, or ashore with the book.

CaribDream 08-15-2013 11:49 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by nolatom:1074326
I teach Basic Keelboat part-time.

The test is pretty straightforward if you've studied the book, and especially the questions at the end of each chapter.

I think each instructor has their own style, and students have their own learning style too. I tend to follow the "let's sail first, then you'll see afterward that the book is 'right'" approach, with a minimum of initial chalk-talk. the boat makes a better "blackboard", and you avoid "MEGO"*

*("my eyes glaze over")

Good luck and enjoy the moment, whether afloat underway, at the dock, or ashore with the book.

I like your approach. But then again as you said everyone has their own learning style. While I like your idea, for me personally I'm not sure I would have understood why/what I was learning during the onboard sailing training had I not studied so much in advance. On the contrary, I did fight the "MEGO" on some topics, and they were not clear until the hands-on sailing. Different strokes for different folks I guess. Key is to match the instructor style to the student style I think.

windwalker 08-15-2013 12:02 PM

Re: ASA Exams
 
With three young children and three small businesses, a live aboard approach is not ideal for us. I have always been on sailboats, but am learning the technical details and a skipper's judgment as I did not have those experiences when younger. Our current training plan suits our needs, and we will do a 3 day on the water class offshore in March for BCC and another in September for chartering. We take on the water lessons as we can shoehorn them into our schedule and I sail with my dad a lot in San Diego.

Thanks,
E

Yamsailor 08-15-2013 01:27 PM

Re: ASA Exams
 
His reply - "Part of my job is making sure I never put you in a situation that I don't feel confident that you are fully capable of handling. You might feel unsure in your ability when you try something the first time, but I make sure you have learned the skills needed before I introduce something new. I'll slow down if I ever feel you aren't fully getting it."

This stuck with us, and eased our anxiety and fears of messing up. In hindsight, finding the right instructor seems super important.[/QUOTE]



This quote is a very important item. I am an ASA Sailing Instructor/Licensed Master. This instructor, whom ever he is, is 100% correct. The key to learning sailing is:

1) Read/Study all the text you are given BEFORE going to class;
2) Enjoy the adventure; and
3) Having the right instructor.


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