Certification Requirements

As mentioned before, the Divemaster Course is divided into 3 sections:

1. Knowledge Development where you strengthen your dive theory knowledge which is the foundation for creative problem solving.

2. Waterskills Development exercises prove your fitness for diving and your competency at in-water skills.

3. Practical Application sessions give candidates hands on experience of dealing with actual diving problems that occur.

In addition to completing the above sections of the course, candidates will also need to show proof of at least 60 logged scuba dives including experience in night diving, deep diving and underwater navigation.

1. Knowledge Development

There are a number of different aspects to the Knowledge Development portion of the Divemaster Course. Most of the dive theory will be learned by Independent Study, with any gaps filled in by Instructor Presentations and discussions.

DM MANUAL- Divemaster candidates need to complete the Knowledge Reviews found in the Divemaster Manual.

- Candidates need to complete the two part PADI Divemaster Exam, scoring 75% or higher on each part of the exam and review any questions answered incorrectly.

Candidates will use the eRDPML, a calculator and the PADI Instructor Manual for reference during the exams.

- Divemaster Trainee's need to prepare an emergency assistance plan with information needed to manage a diving accident at any particular dive site.


2. Waterskills Development

Divemaster candidates need to complete five waterskills exercises, earning a combined exercise score of at least 15. There is no passing score for any single exercise.

DM Swim Test- Exercise 1: 400 Metre/Yard Swim - swim 400 metres/yards nonstop, without swimming aids and using any stroke or combination of strokes.

- Exercise 2: 15-minute Tread - tread water, drown proof, bob or float using no aids wearing only a swimsuit for 15 minutes, with hands out of the water during the last two minutes.

DM Tread / Float- Exercise 3: 800 Metre/Yard Swim - swim 800 metres/yards face down, using mask, snorkel and fins, nonstop, without flotation aids and without using arms to swim.

- Exercise 4: 100 Metre/Yard Inert Diver Tow - tow (or push) a diver for 100 metres/yards nonstop, at the surface, without assistance; both divers equipped in full scuba equipment.

- Exercise 5: Equipment Exchange - in confined water, demonstrate the Equipment Exchangeability to effectively respond to an unusual circumstance underwater by exchanging all scuba equipment (except exposure suits and weights) with a buddy while sharing a single regulator second stage.

Diver Rescue

During the Divemaster course we will develop and assess a candidate's rescue skills and evaluate a candidate's ability to respond to a submerged, unresponsive, nonbreathing diver.

DM Skill CircuitDive Skills Workshop

Divemaster candidates must develop demonstration-quality Dive Skills and during the evaluation they must score at least 3 points on each skill, with a total of 82 points needed for certification, with at least one underwater skill scoring 5 points. Candidates must also practice and perform a role model mask removal and replacement demonstration, scoring at least a 4.

3. Practical Application

The Practical Application section of the Divemaster Course makes up the largest part of the course and gives candidates the practical, hands-on training needed to become a good Divemaster. Before completing the course candidates will need to complete the following practical skills, workshops and practical assessments:

Practical Skills

Green Rock Dive Site MapSkill 1: Dive Site Set Up and Management

This skill prepares candidates to organise and manage the predive preparation at a dive site whether they are supervising certified divers or acting as an instructional assistant. The Dive Academy incorporate this with managing a day on the boat to include meeting customers when they arrive, organizing and directing the customers throughout the day and planning, briefing and leading a dive.

DM Course Mapping Project

Skill 2: Mapping Project

Candidates plan, brief and execute a survey on one of the dive sites around Samui and create a detailed map of the site showing underwater relief, important points of interest, Relevant environmental notes, recommended entry/exit areas, local facilities, and potential hazards. The planning and execution of the plan are more important than the quality of the drawing!!

DM Dive BriefingSkill 3: Dive Briefing

Divemaster candidates conduct a dive briefing for a familiar dive site covering all 10 points listed on the Divemaster Slates, including site description, dive procedures, safety procedures and entry and exit procedures. They will then safely lead a dive executing the plan outlined in the briefing and making sure the divers are shown the marine life and best features of the dive site.

DM Course Search & Recovery ScenarioSkill 4: Search and Recovery Scenario

Divemaster candidates will go through various search and recovery scenarios that allow them to demonstrate a methodical search of an area to find various sized objects, learn how to tie knots correctly underwater and to demonstrate how to safely rig and bring objects to the surface.

Candidates who have a PADI Search & Recovery Diver certification may be credited with having already completed this skill.

DM Course Deep Dive ScenarioSkill 5: Deep Dive Scenario

Because deep diving takes more planning and preparation, this skill provides candidates with additional experience to better prepare them to supervise deep dives. Candidates will prepare emergency breathing equipment, practice descent techniques for a deep dive, navigate using a compass at depth, and practice safe ascent techniques including the 3 minute safety stop.

Candidates who have a PADI Deep Diver certification may be credited with completing this skill.

Divemaster-Conducted Programs Workshops

The Divemaster Conducted Programs workshops provide candidates with hands-on experience of the PADI Programs they will be able to conduct once they have been certified as a Divemaster, including organisation, handling problems, performance requirements and PADI Standards relating to the programs.

Workshop 1: Reactivate in Confined Water - This workshop prepares candidates to independently conduct a PADI Reactivate program for certified divers.

Workshop 2: Skin Diver Course and Snorkeling Supervision - This workshop can either focus on preparing candidates to teach the PADI Skin Diver course, or on showing candidates how to lead snorkeling tours and supervise snorkelers.

Workshop 3: Discover Scuba Diving Program in Confined Water - This workshop helps candidates understand the extra caution and conservative measures needed when working with nondivers.

Workshop 4: Discover Scuba Diving Program - Additional Open Water Dive - This workshop continues reinforcing to candidates the extra caution and conservative measures needed when working with non-divers.

Workshop 5: Discover Local Diving in Open Water - This workshop allows candidates to practice evaluating dive conditions, planning a dive, giving a dive briefing and leading a dive and supervising divers.

Practical Assessments

During the practical assessments candidates work with student divers taking a PADI Course, providing them with real-life problems and realistic training. The more realistic the training, the more candidates learn about responding to diver problems.

Assisting in the poolPractical Assessment 1 - Open Water Diver Students in Confined Water

Divemaster candidates assist an Instructor conduct an Open Water Course Confined Water Session, including helping to organise predive equipment setup by student divers, supervising student divers not receiving the immediate attention of the instructor during training, helping a student diver overcome a learning difficulty, helping to respond to, or prevent, student diver problems as they occur and demonstrating a skill for student divers.

DM Assisting on an Open Water CoursePractical Assessment 2 - Open Water Diver Students in Open Water

Divmaster candidates help an Instructor assess an open water training site as to site suitability for training entry-level divers, help organise predive equipment setup by student divers, assist in the preparation of the site, supervise student divers not receiving the immediate attention of the instructor during training, respond to, or prevent, student diver problems as they occur and lead student divers on an underwater tour.

DM Assisting on a Con Ed CoursePractical Assessment 3 - Continuing Education Student Divers in Open Water

Divemaster candidates assist on a PADI Continuing Education Course such as Advanced Open Water or a Specialty Diver Course. They help coordinate student diver flow during training, escort continuing education student divers during training, reporting performance and learning difficulties to the Instructor and helping a continuing education student diver overcome a learning difficulty.

Practical Assessment 4 - Certified Divers in Open Water

Divemaster candidates conduct a dive for certified divers including environmental and diver assessments and taking appropriate supervisory steps based on the assessments. Candidates give a predive briefing appropriate to the dive site, account for buddy teams entering and leaving the Water and respond to, or prevent diver problems appropriately.


Divemasters are expected to display professionalism in their attitude, appearance, interaction with others and care for the dive environment. As part of their overall evaluation, Divemaster candidates are scored on their professionalism. By measuring these attributes, Divemaster candidates can better understand what it takes to be a dive professional.

Online 10am until 6pm Koh Samui time if you would like to chat