Harbour Master Certificate

Harbour Master Certificate Programme 2014

Link to application form and joining instructions on the UKHMA web site


PSS and the UK Harbour Masters Association (UKHMA) have jointly developed – with the approval of the Maritime & Coastguard Agency – an assessment process for a Harbour Master Certificate. The certificate process demonstrates a candidate’s knowledge, understanding and practical experience of the seventeen modules found in the National Occupational Standards for Harbour Masters.

The process was live tested in a full-scale trial during 2013, leading to the issue of the first five Harbour Master Certificates in November 2013.

The Harbour Master Certificate and Assessment Process

The Harbour Master Certificate is a voluntary qualification, open to all current and aspiring Harbour Masters, that demonstrates capability, knowledge and understanding of the National Occupational Standards for Harbour Masters 2012. The Harbour Master Certificate is endorsed by the Maritime & Coastguard Agency and is recognised by the Department for Transport.  The Harbour Master Certificate is not STCW-compliant.

In practice, the Harbour Master Certificate assessment process takes place over a prescribed 12-month period during which a candidate is required to identify, gather and present evidence relating to the National Occupational Standards for appraisal by two independent and remote assessors nominated by the Management Group. On successful completion of the assessment process, the candidate is invited to attend a face-to-face assessment meeting conducted by two different assessors and monitored by the MCA.

On successful completion of all assessments, and subject to the approval of the MCA, the candidate will be awarded a Harbour Master Certificate, valid for a period of 5 years.

Revalidation of the HM Certificate can be achieved by the holder submitting Continuing Professional Development (CPD) evidence, to a prescribed level, for the previous five years.


There are 17 Units in the Harbour Master Certificate suite. Each sets out the requirements for the subject and gives examples of evidence of capability. Fourteen units are mandatory and each one should be completed by all candidates. Three units are optional and may be completed at the candidate’s discretion.

Full details of how to submit evidence to the assessors is contained in the course guidance notes which are supplied to successful applicants. Candidates are required to have access to a PC connected to the Internet and a scanner (optional).

Liverpool John Moores University

The Harbour Master Certificate is operated under license by Liverpool John Moores University.  Queries regarding the Harbour Master Certificate, the application process and the waiting list should be submitted by email only to: HM Certificate Administration LJMU


The fee for the 2016/17 candidate intake is:

  • Sept 2016 £1550.00 for UKHMA or PSS Members

VAT is applicable to the above fees. Fees are non-refundable in the event that the candidate does not complete the course for whatever reason.

Applicants will be required to settle their course fees, or provide an official purchase order for the fees, prior to commencing the course.

Course Dates and Candidate Numbers

It is proposed to accept applications from candidates, as follows:

• Starting January – 5 candidates

• Starting March – 5 candidates

• Starting September – 5 candidates.

Application Procedure

Applicants wishing to be considered for the HM Certificate assessment programme are, in the first instance, required to download the PDF form from the UK Harbour Master's Association web site and return as an email attachment.

Applications will be treated on a ‘first come, first served’ basis and a waiting list will be implemented in the event of over-subscription.

Link to application form and joining instructions on the UKHMA web site