While certifications are not necessary in all situations for sailing, they are typically required when chartering boats. The Annapolis Sailing School offers certifications at various levels through the American Sailing Association. Please remember that the certification systems are designed to evaluate your sailing skills and certify your ability through written and practical testing. Therefore, certification cannot be guaranteed.
Annapolis Sailing School currently offers certification at the following levels:
- ASA 101 – Basic Keelboat Sailing
- ASA 103 – Coastal Cruising
- ASA 104 – Bareboat Chartering
- ASA 105 – Coastal Navigation
Certification through the American Sailing Association system requires both a written exam and a practical skills evaluation (except for Coastal Navigation) in which you must demonstrate a wide range of boat and sail handling skills. The process of certification is an evaluative one. The evaluator must witness your performance of the required operations correctly on command, and cannot be teaching at that time. The American Sailing Association requires that the ASA 101 – Basic Keelboat Sailing certification be obtained before attempting the ASA 103 – Coastal Cruising certification, and that both be successfully attained before attempting the ASA 104 – Bareboat Chartering.
The content covered in these courses and the written tests for each level are fairly simple with adequate study. The level of sailing and boat handling skills required, even at the Basic Keelboat level, is fairly high and in most cases cannot be appropriately mastered in instructional courses shorter than three days. Check the courses page to find the course appropriate for your needs.
Note: ASA 105 – Coastal Navigation certification does not require an on-the-water evaluation; it is a comprehensive test of all coastal navigation skills which requires four to six hours to complete.