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Who is This Course Suitable For?

Whether you are in the early stages of your career, nearing the end and looking for a retirement project, on sabbatical leave or currently working within the maritime industry, this course will stretch and challenge you and most importantly, bring you closer to completing a yacht or boat build project.

12 – 18 months

10 in total

Diploma: £2,950
Certificate: £2,150

Recognised by:
University of Portsmouth

About the Course

The dream of every man and woman with an interest in the sea is to ultimately build their own boat.

Trans-oceanic sailor Jimmy Cornell once wrote, “The planning stage of a cruise is often just as enjoyable as the voyage itself, letting one’s imagination loose on all kinds of possibilities. Yet translating dreams into reality means a lot of practical questions have to be answered.”

The Yacht and Boat Building course is constructed to guide those dreams to fruition and further educate you on the intricacies involved with building your own boat. Incorporating aspects of the decision-making, management and construction processes, you will be a step closer to achieving your dreams of building your own vessel.

“Whenever your preparations for the sea are poor; the sea worms its way in and finds the problems” – Francis Stokes. This course, with its easy to follow steps, will provide you with knowledge on various boat building materials, and highlight the various skills that are paramount to the successful construction of your boat.

This course is not intended to be the solitary element in the building of your boat, but rather best utilised as an overall guide as to what steps you need to take in order to pursue your ambition. We would recommend that this course would be most effective in conjunction with further knowledge and experience in building your own boat.

Course Structure

The course consists of 10 modules. All students are required to successfully complete and pass the module assignments. Diploma students will also be required to sit and pass a final examination.

1. Deciding On A Boat To Build
  • Assessing your needs and inspirations
  • Different classes of a self-build
  • Basic Yacht Designs
  • Basic Motor Boat designs
  • Basic construction types
  • The build facility
  • Yacht designers
2. Managing The Build Process
  • Where to Build
  • Workshop/Yard requirements
  • Budgeting and Costs
  • Project Management
  • Sourcing Parts
  • Buy or Lease/machinery and tools
  • BOM’s/detailed costs
3. Documentation/Training
  • CE Certification
  • Type Approval/Licensing
  • Legal Requirements
  • VAT/ Goods Service Tax etc
  • Warranties/Manuals
  • Learn to Sail
  • Basic Safety at Sea
4. Constructing in Steel/Aluminium
  • History/Background
  • Construction Techniques
  • Designers Plans
  • Kit Builds
  • Health & Safety
  • Skills required
  • Sub-contracting/ machinery & tools required
  • Paints coatings/protective systems
5. Mechanical Systems
  • Propulsion
  • Stern Gear
  • Steering & rudders
  • Generators
  • Water makers
  • Pumping Systems
  • Tools required & sub-contracting
  • Documentation and conclusion
6. Basics of Yacht/Boat Building
  • To loft or not?
  • Basics of lofting
  • Advanced lofting
  • Considerations for motor boats
  • Considerations for yachts/sailboats
  • Common boat/shipbuilding terms
7. Constructing a Wooden Boat
  • History/Background
  • Construction techniques
  • Designers plans
  • Building moulds, jigs & strong-backs
  • Wooden kit boats
  • Health & safety
  • Skills required
  • Different types of wood/timber used in boat building
8. Building in GRP
  • The evolution of GRP yacht building
  • Materials used
  • Construction techniques
  • Design drawings & weights
  • Kit builds & mouldings
  • Building plugs & moulds
  • Skills, sub contractors & tools
  • Building the Hull & Deck
  • Sub mouldings and bulkheads
  • Health & Safety with GRP work
9. Fitting Out
  • Internal Layouts
  • Electrical Systems
  • Water & Sanitation Systems
  • Safety Equipment & Navigation Systems
  •  Anchoring, mooring & Deck fittings
  • Painting your yacht
  • Health & Safety, tools & equipment
  • Skills required & sub-contracting
10. Finishing The Vessel
  • Boat relocation
  • Launching
  • Ways of lifting & launching a vessel
  • The actual launch
  • Stepping the mast
  • Types of berth/moorings
  • Sea Trials
  • Modifications
  • Insurance
Career Pathway

Career path:
Many tend to come via apprenticeships in boat yards and boat builders, but this is not the only route. Some individuals undertake specific training and start on their own as contractors.

From an entry level salary at minimum wage rising to around £30,000 per annum.

All aspects of building and maintaining yachts and small craft including structure, machinery, and electrics.


On passing the Diploma, you will receive the above icon. Please use it on your business cards, LinkedIn profile and website(s)!

You can also use these letters after your name: MTA Dip YABB


Online learning allows you to study in your own time, at your own pace from anywhere in the world. This saves on travel and classroom costs and allows you to fit your studies around your job and progress your career.


While the nature of distance learning is independent study, we recognise the importance of support. Students can contact us at any time during their course for assistance and our team of industry experts are always on hand for advice.


We have over 50 industry experts writing, developing and advising on our course material. We truly believe that allowing students to tap into their expertise and knowledge is of the utmost importance to fulfil your dream career.

If you would prefer to complete this as a classroom-based course, please contact us.


How long do the courses take to complete? What's the difference between a Diploma and a Certificate? Read through our Frequently Asked Questions below to find out the answer.

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