Electronic Chart Display & Information System (ECDIS)

Course Description

This course is designed to enhance navigational safety through the correct operation of ECDIS equipment by the officer in charge of a navigational watch. The integrated lecture/lab experience will allow each student to practice each required proficiency task on individual ECDIS/simulation stations as the topic is covered. Course content covers the theory of ECDIS, IMO regulations, and requirements and performance standards governing the use of ECDIS. This course meets the STCW requirements for ECDIS certification.

This course consists of one 1-hour lecture and one 2-hour lab per week for a semester with practrical assessments and a comprehensive final examination.

Learning Objectives

Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the following STCW elements:

Demonstrate proficiency in the following skills:


  1. Introduction to ECDIS
  2. Purpose of ECDIS
  3. ECDIS value to navigation
  4. Limitations of ECDIS: Correct and Incorrect use of ECDIS
  5. ECDIS work station start up, stop and screen layout
  6. Vessel position
  7. Position source
  8. Heading and drift vectors
  9. Basic navigation
  10. Understanding chart data
  11. Chart quality and accuracy
  12. Chart organization
  13. Sensors
  14. Ports and data feeds
  15. Chart selection
  16. Chart information
  17. Changing the settings
  18. Chart scaling
  19. Information layers
  20. System and position alarms
  21. Depth and contour alarms
  22. Vessel maneuvering characteristics
  23. Route planning by table
  24. Route planning by chart
  25. Track limits
  26. Checking voyage plan for safety
  27. Embedded tide, current and climate almanac
  28. Route schedule
  29. User charts in route planning
  30. ARPA tracked target overlay
  31. AIS functions
  32. Radar overlay (RIB) functions
  33. Procuring and installing chart data
  34. Installing chart corrections
  35. System reset and backup
  36. Archiving with ECDIS data management utility
  37. Data logging and logbook
  38. Playback
  39. Responsibility
  40. Effective navigation with ECDIS

Other objectives

At the completion of the course the student will be able to: