MCA Master 200 / OOW 500

The MCA Master 200 / OOW 500 is very similar to the RYA Yachtmaster Offshore/Ocean qualification but is being asked for more frequently when working overseas when the port officials are used to recognizing MCA qualifications. This qualification can allow skippers to take charge of a vessel up to 200gt and act as Officer of the Watch on vessels up to 500gt.

There are 2 different levels – Limited and Unlimited. Limited allows operation up to 150nm from a Safe Haven and Unlimited allows worldwide use. Please see the section under ‘pre-requisites for a detailed breakdown of what is required.

The Syllabus is vast and it is not possible to cover everything in 6 days so pre-study before and after the course is recommended. The course is run in conjunction with the syllabus in Annex 10 of Msn 1853 which includes Radar, IRPCS, Stability, Marpol, Bridge Procedures, COSWP, Legal, Salvage, Watch Handovers, Safe manning, hours of work, crew agreements, and Masters responsibilities.

All candidates are examined orally by an MCA examiner.

Please see this link for information on how to convert from other MCA & Fishing qualifications:

Course dates:




5 Days



  • 5 days tuition in our modern training classroom in Rhu Marina.
  • Pre course Q&A Booklet (posted before hand)
  • USB Stick with additional course material.
  • Our Course notes Folder.
  • Light refreshments throughout the course

What to bring with you:

  • Cash for lunch (either Cafe Rhu or in Helensburgh)
  • Laptop (if you have one)

Pre-Requisites for Master 200gt Unlimited:

  • Minimum of 18 years old
  • Have completed 6 months’ seagoing service while holding an RYA Yachtmaster Offshore or
    IYT Master of Yachts Limited certificate
  • Hold a valid ENG1 Medical
  • RYA/MCA Yachtmaster Offshore Certificate of Competence (Commercial Endorsed)
  • RYA/MCA Yachtmaster Coastal/Offshore Shorebased Certificate
  • 4 x STCW Modules (Fire Fighting, PSSR, Elementary First Aid, Personal Survival Techniques)
  • A GMDSS Restricted Operators Certificate (ROC)
  • HELM Operational Certificate (Human Element Leadership & Management)

Additional requirments for Master 200gt Unlimited:

  • RYA/MCA Yachtmaster Ocean Certificate of Competence (Commercial Endorsed)
  • RYA/MCA Yachtmaster Ocean Shorebased Certificate
  • A GMDSS General Operators Certificate (GOC)

Gaining the Qualification:

The Master 200gt/OOW 500 qualification is gained after successfully passing an oral examination with an MCA Examiner. There is no set MCA or RYA Prep course. The syllabus is vast and over 50% are subjects such as Business, Law, Marpol, Bridge Procedures etc which aren’t normally covered in RYA Courses. The full syllabus can be found in MSN 1858 by clicking here


Candidates are required to complete a Notice of Eligibility (NoE) and send it off to the MCA. Allow at least 28 days for the MCA to process your NoE. Oral Examinations are conducted at MCA Offices around the country.