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How to become a Marine Surveyor

Find out more about becoming a Marine Surveyor

A leading international career in Marine Surveying continues to be a popular choice for many students who decide to pursue a career in the maritime industry. Here at the Maritime Training Academy, we continually work hard to research new topics and material to bring to our courses for our students when they embark on any Maritime Academy (MTA) course and this marine surveyor career focus is no different. Our Diploma in Ship Surveying gives students the opportunity and fundamental knowledge and experience to begin their career in Marine Surveying and provides them with a thorough understanding of the industry giving them a foothold in their chosen career path. We have many students coming to us asking frequent questions about how they can become a Marine Surveyor. What does it take to become a Marine Surveyor? What courses are involved in becoming a Marine Surveyor? And, so we thought what better way of fulfilling some of your key questions with a short guide on how to become a Marine Surveyor?

What does a Marine Surveyor do?

Marine surveyors perform inspections of vessels of all types including pleasure craft, passenger vessels, tugboats, barges, dredges, oil rigs, ferries, cargo vessels and warships. This also extends to marine cargo, marine engines and facilities such as canals, drydocks, loading docks and more for the purpose of pre-purchase evaluation, insurance eligibility, insurance claim resolution and regulation compliance.

The different types of survey

There are many types of surveys that you learn from being a Marine Surveyor. It is not possible to list them all but we have listed some examples below:

  • Valuation Surveys
  • Damage Surveys
  • Safety & Operational Surveys
  • Surveying Rigs & Sails
  • Hull Surveys
  • Insurance Surveys
  • Cargo Surveys
  • Incident & Accident Investigation
  • Corrosion Surveys
  • Surveying Engines & Ship Systems

How will the Diploma help me to become a Surveyor?

The MTA Ship Surveying Diploma will provide the key basic underpinning knowledge required by someone intending to become a Surveyor.

All the Diplomas are recognised in the industry as professional development programmes towards surveying.

If you can, do your homework and try and spend time with a practising surveyor. It is very much worth noting that the industry does not require Surveyors to be licensed or qualified but reputation is KING in the maritime industry for landing that all-important job at the end of the course. Therefore, if you have that experience under your belt, you are already halfway there. We suggest liaising with as many relevant societies and organisations as possible to build up your experience and accreditation to put you in the best position for your future.

Examples of societies and credible organisations:

The Ship Surveying Diplomas will stand you in good stead as you progress with your career. Knowledge, work-based competence and understanding are the main elements of success.

By taking our Marine Surveyor Course, written by working experts will help you achieve that goal.

Will I become a qualified Surveyor upon successful completion?

Surveyors are not required to be licensed or qualified hence standards vary considerably in the industry. On the successful completion of this course, students will have crucial knowledge and understanding of the industry and specifics of shipbuilding and the in-depth structures of marine surveying. Furthermore, once successfully passed, there is the option to progress through to level two (practical) and level three (peer review) gaining further work-based knowledge and competence.

Can I carry out a survey on completion?

The responsibility for an individual to carry out a survey or not rests entirely on that individual. It is suggested that before carrying out any sort of survey you make sure you have suitable insurance and legal cover.

The course is structured to cover all the areas of expertise a new Surveyor will need in order to establish himself/herself in business to perform satisfactory surveys.

How much can I expect to earn?

This will depend on a range of factors including:

  • Experience
  • Types of survey
  • Type of vessel
  • How well you market yourself
  • Quality of final survey report which is a direct reflection on the Surveyor
  • Geographical location

A Marine Surveyor working in the commercial sector in the UK earns an AVERAGE of £39,403.00 per year based on a range of £25,216 – £65,614.

Please note this is an AVERAGE as recorded on There is the potential to earn considerably more or less.

Small craft surveyors that work for themselves will typically charge by the foot or metre for surveys like pre-condition. But other specialist surveys will be charged differently.

Highly experienced surveyors that offer a premium service will charge a lot more than average and owners, brokers, insurance companies etc will pay for that experience and service because it is a good investment.

Surveys performed badly will only cost owners money in the long run.


What are the attributes to being a successful Marine Surveyor?

Main attributes – good observation skills, good technical knowledge, ability to listen and learn.

What is the key to running a successful Marine Surveying business?

If you are looking to go into business once you become qualified as a Marine Surveyor, you will want to be looking at a few key main success elements. We have listed some below:

  • Understand what service it is you are selling
  • Be persistent in your approach to your business mindset
  • Work on your time management skills
  • Be proactive
  • Work well under pressure.

Studying to become a Marine Surveyor with the Maritime Training Academy

Studying with the MTA is an experience like no other. With the best maritime lecturers and tutors at your fingertips, you have the opportunity to go far in the career of your choice. Whether that be online, blended learning or classroom-based, the choice is yours. At the MTA, we are the experts in the maritime industry and we want you to come and enhance your career with us today.

There are many varied career paths within the Marine Surveying field. We provide a number of industry-recognised courses that will complement your experience and help you to increase your earnings and potential.

We operate an ‘open door’ towards all applicants and warmly encourage those that wish to learn. So, if you want to apply then please do.

All of our applications are checked by the dedicated course Account Manager before acceptance. If we need any more information then we will contact the prospective student. Our main objective is that we want our students to succeed and enjoy the course. If we think that you are going to struggle based on a lack of experience or qualifications, then we will contact you first and qualify the areas of concern. Motivation and commitment are the most important factors. If you have those two attributes then we are happy to receive your application.

So, what are you waiting for? Download our Diploma in Ship Surveying brochure today and start learning with the Maritime Training Academy. We look forward to having you onboard!

Download the Diploma in Ship Surveying brochure here

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