How to Obtain a Certificate of Proficiency

Marine Radio Operators Certificates

There are three certificates in regards to marine radio operator qualification:

Criteria to Sit an Examination and/or Apply for a Certificate of Proficiency

The following minimum requirements must be met prior to applying for a marine radio operator's certificate of proficiency or endorsement:

  • Minimum prescribed age in years - 16;
  • application must be complete and accompanied by all required documents;and
  • a payment of a fee is made.

Please note a current or earlier equivalent marine radio operator's certificate of proficiency may be cancelled if an already qualified operator attempts and fails the current examination for an equivalent or lesser certficate. If you are unsure whether you are already qualified please contact the office on 1300 365 262 before attempting the current exam.

Ways to Obtain Your Operators Certificate of Proficiency or Endorsement

There are two ways to obtain a certificate of proficiency:

1. Sucessfully complete an OMC examination; and

2. Submit an application for the recognition of a Unit of Competency UOC).

OMC Examination 

For the SROCP and LROCP, there are two ways to prepare for the exam. You may choose to study independently or to attend a course offered by a training provider.

The MSCE certification requires the candidate to be the holder of a vaild SROCP, LROCP or equivalent, prior to gaining the MSCE qualification. A candidate must attend a course with a GMDSS (or higher) qualified trainer. Access to a fully operational Inmarsat-C terminal and a computer with Inmarsat-C software is also required.

However, all examinations are supervised by OMC registered invigilators (invigilators are people who supervise exams).

  • Independent Study
    Should you choose to study independently for your certificate examination we recommend that you obtain a current edition of the Marine Radio Operators Handbook. The examination questions are based on material contained in that handbook. The handbook includes the recommended syllabi for each of the certificates and icons throughout the book indicate relevant areas of study for each qualification. Once you have studied the handbook and feel that you are ready to be examined, you must contact an invigilator in your area and arrange a suitable time, date and place to sit the examination.

  • Attend a Course
    Should you choose to attend a course, your first step will be to make enquiries about training courses available in your area. Training courses vary markedly in terms of scope and cost. Do your homework before committing yourself to attend and pay for any particular course. For example, will there be an OMC registered invigilator conducting the examination at the completion of the course? Are the costs of the handbook and examination marking included in the course fee?

Contact an Invigilator

On our web site is a list of all our registered invigilators. Click on ‘Invigilator Search’ then click on your State or Territory and scroll through the list to find a registered invigilator in your area.

Some invigilators work independently, whilst others are associated with organisations such as TAFE colleges, maritime training organisations, and volunteer groups.

Independent invigilators supervise examinations on a voluntary basis and therefore do not charge for this service, although there may be reimbursement of costs incurred. An invigilator associated with an organisation may charge an administration fee. In both instances you should discuss this matter with the invigilator.

Once you have contacted an invigilator, the invigilator will request an examination package from the Office of Maritime Communications (OMC). After you have completed the examination the invigilator will return the package to the OMC for marking.

For examination details, please click here.


Unit of Competency

OMC are trailing, for a one year period commencing 1st August 2016, the issuing of a marine radio operator certificate of proficiency based on the applicant submitting an official certificate of competency issued by a  Registered Training Organisation (RTO). 

Conditions for Acceptance of an Application

  • RTO's must be authorised to issue UOC's and have on scope the training packages; MARC020 (transmit and receive inforamtion by marine radio), MARC021 (transmit and receive information by marine VHF radio and MARO003 (transmit and receive information by the Global Maritime Distress and Safety System (GMDSS).
  • Applicant's must attend and successfuly complete a MARC020, MARC021 or MARO003 training course at an RTO.
  • OMC reserves the right to decline an aplication if the UOC does not include all requirements OMC have, to meet to fulfill it's obligations under the Deed of Agreement with the ACMA.
  • The current revision of the UOCs, effective 27th Febuary 2015, will be the only evidence accepted for recognition, provided the UOCs include all requirements of the OMC syllabi.


  • LROCP requires evidence of attainging MARC020 or MARO003.
  • SROCP requires evidence of attaining MARC021 or MARO003.
  • MSCE require evidence of attaining MARO003.

OMC can either:

  • sight the original certficate (do not post); or 
  • a copy of the original certificate of competency certifiied by a Justice of the Peace can accompany the application; or 
  • give permission and supply your Unique Student Identifier (USI) to enable OMC staff to check the National Register for validity.

To print the application form, download the Application form. For the fee payable visit - OMC Fees web page 

Marine Radio Operators Handbook

The radio operator handbooks may be purchased from the OMC or viewed online, details for ordering at available at: Marine Radio Operators Handbook. The cost of a handbook is as per the fee structure detailed in OMC Fees. Postage and handling for a single book and handling for multiple books are also listed on the OMC Fees page. Should you require more than one copy of the handbook, please telephone us for a quote for the postage and handling component (this reduces as the number of books ordered increases) on 1300 365 262.

OMC also has available for purchase the Marine VHF Radio Operators Handbook. The VHF information in the Marine Radio Operators Handbook has been extracted and compiled into a small book for those people studying for the VHF qualification.

Revision questions are available and can be accessed from the Handbook section of the website.

If you have credit card facility you can order the handbook by telephoning 1300 365 262.

Resolving Issues

Issues that have occurred during the examination and certificate issuing process (not training) should first be bought to the attention of the OMC office staff who will endeavour to resolve your concerns. Should you be unsatisfied with the resolution you may apply (within 30 days) for an independent review by a delegate nominated by the Australian Maritime College (AMC), refer ‘Resolving Issues’ under the ‘Current Student’ tab on the AMC website. After receiving the independent decision should you still have major unresolved concerns you may apply to the ACMA  for a final determination.


Australian Communications and Media Authority
PO Box 13112
Law Courts
Melbourne VIC 8010