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Category Archives: IDC Preparation Course
Once again, Prior Knowledge comes to the rescue. Martin came to see me on Saturday. Martin is a PADI Divemaster heading towards his PADI IDC. As usual, Martin’s head is full of numbers, confusion, equations and formulas. None of which make sense.
So why is this problem so common? When you look at the way that these subjects are first taught to people, it’s not difficult to understand why even the most intelligent of people are confused.
First off. Barriers are put in front of people right from the start:
“Oh you’ll find Physics difficult!” is a common prelude to learning. “PADI DM Physics is SOoo confusing!” None of this helps! Immediately these phrases put a barrier up in front of the learner. Then words are pounded into the brain without proper explanations nor order.
“Weight of an object” “1.03″ “Displacement” “Partial Pressure” “0.97″ “Gauge Pressure”"V2=P1 X V1 divide by P2″ etc.. etc…
So the learner has to juggle words in his head, most of them he doesn’t even know what they mean. The result is confusion and frustration.
When people come to our Training Sessions. Most of the time I don’t teach anything! I do my best to get people to “Un-Learn” all of the nonsense that is floating around in their minds. I just leave the relevant bits.
Then I show them the way that I would teach a new PADI Divemaster these subjects.
I start from the beginning, explain in simple terms the methods, the reasoning behind the methods, and in ways that are logical. The result is that new DMs can easily answer questions and retain the simple methods in their heads for years.
Martins reaction was very normal. First off he was amazed at how simple PADI Physics was, this emotion was immediately followed by anger. “Why has it taken so long for someone to explain this to me?” – and THAT is a very good question!
Our next PADI IDC is just 2 days away from starting, but first, we have our popular IDC Preparation course in which the candidates get to ask all those unanswered questions about dive theory – The stuff they just don’t get.
Platinum PADI Course Director Steve Prior has a way of explaining those mumbo jumbo subjects, like displacement, pressure/density relationships and half-times in a way that we all understand. And it’s a way that we feel comfortable enough with to use ourselves to pass the knowledge on to our future student divers.
Steve has the same no nonsense approach to the skill demonstrations workshop in which the message is loud and clear: Keep it simple! If it doesn’t help the student to perform the skill – then leave it out!!
The only question at the end of the day is…. Can it really be THAT simple?
PADI IDC at Ocean View Diving, Lancing W, Sussex. School Holiday dates.
Scheduling a PADI IDC during UK School Holidays is a perfect solution for some people. The IDC will start with EFR instructor course on the 5th August, then there will be 2 days of Preparation followed by the PADI Instructor Development Course. This will run right up until the PADI Instructor Exam on the 17th and 18th of August. Ocean View Diving is the ideal location for a PADI IDC.
Why should you do your PADI IDC with Prior Knowledge?
There are many reasons that make us much different from most other courses.
For a start we make sure that you are very confident with knowledge of Theory and PADI Standards even before your PADI IDC starts. Our Distance Learning and Preparation course is a great way to get ready for your course.
Another reason is that our PADI IDC really prepares you to teach in the “Real World” of the diving industry. You’ll get to look at all of the common techniques that the modern Scuba Diving Instructor use. You’ll get to know which ones work, and which ones don’t. You’ll learn how to replace those with techniques that are not common but are extremely efficient.
You’ll need to have an open mind, and be prepared to learn what will work for you. You’ll learn how to “Teach Courses, and NOT People”
For more details, please contact me, I’ll be pleased to answer any questions.
Hi all. Just to let you know that PADI have now posted the new 2013 version of the PADI Instructor Manual to their website.
It’s available to download for all current PADI members. We have already updated all of our “Distance Learning” Preparation course materials accordingly, so all existing participants, and all new ones can be assured that you’ll be using the most advanced and the most recent questions to prepare for your PADI IDC.
Identifying where the problem lies
I love the psychology of learning, and there is never a more satisfying feeling than quickly solving the problems of people who have struggled with Physics for a long time.
Of course it’s not only Physics, it’s most of the Dive Theory sections.
Over the past 3 days we have held a PADI Dive Theory workshop.. it’s been fantastic! We have had some remarkable results!
But why do people have problems with Theory in the first place? As always, the answer is often linked to psychology.
One common source of the problem
Ofen confusion is planted into people’s minds the very minute that they sign up for a PADI Divemaster course.
Let’s look more closely at the journey a diver makes to become a PADI Divemaster or PADI Instructor.
In the beginning, it’s usual that a diver takes a PADI Open Water Course. The diver is told by their instructor that the course is “Easy” the Knowledge Reviews are “Easy” and so are the Quick Quizzes. Of course the Diver finds no problems at all.
Then after diving for a while and completing the PADI Advanced and Rescue Courses, the Diver enrols onto a PADI Divemaster course. This time however, there is a big difference… then the Diver is told how “Difficult” the theory will be! The Diver is told by everyone they meet that they will have “Trouble” in answering the questions.
And of course.. The Diver struggles.
I don’t know why Instructors insist on telling Divemasters that theory is ”Hard” when most of the time it’s exactly the same as the Open Water Course!!
Take a look in the Open Water Manual as early as page 17 to find the pricipals of Pressure Volume Relationships. Approximately 40 pct of all Physics exams are made up of questions about the effects of this pressure. How can this subject become so much more ”Difficult” along the way?
How to solve the problem
Of course there are many reasons why people struggle with Theory. So the first thing that I do on our workshops is to find the root cause of the problem, I can’t begin to help someone before having a good idea why they feel that they can’t learn.
But whatever the reason, one thing is for certain! There is no point at all in explaining Physics to people in the same way that they have learned before! They KNOW that they don’t understand the subject! So it’s crucial to explain in ways radically different to those that they have seen before.
For most of the time, I find that I don’t “Teach” anything new.. In fact I spend most of the time getting rid of “Rubbish” that has been planted by many kind hearted people who have offerd to help in the past. All of the information in their head is “True” and is often relevant, but it’s all very confusing, it’s often in the wrong context and often doesn’t help at all. But it’s easy for me to correct this.
If you are having problems with theory, please don’t waste time by reading page after page of the encyclopedia. Find out more about how our Theory Workshops, can help you. Or you can also find out more about our Distance Learning program. contact me for more information.
Although the PADI IDC in Sharm el Sheikh doesn’t officially start until tomorrow, the team building has already begun. We have spent the past two days removing any last minute doubts about Dive Theory, and had a laugh while practicing the very latest Skills in the pool. Everyone had completed our “Distance Learning” Preparation, so were already very prepared.
The team are now 100 pct relaxed and ready to begin their transformation into a PADI Instructor. Their lives are about to CHANGE for ever!
I often find that PADI Divemasters and PADI IDC Candidates often have a problem with a question about the Coreolis Effect. When you look in most PADI materials, you’ll usually find a very simple explanation that states: Major Ocean Currents flow Clockwise in the Northern hemisphere, and Counter Clockwise in the Southern hemisphere. Whilst this is of course very true, it doesn’t really explain why.
I have tried to explain the reasons why on this video. I hope that you like it, The production is a bit scruffy! but the content is fine. Let me know if you have any questions
The start of the PADI Instructor Development Course
Istvan, Saad and Ian arrived at Emperor Divers in Sharm, 2 days ahead of their PADI Instructor Development Course. Over the past few weeks, they had taken part in our Distance Learning Preparation course and completed 8 mock exams that I had sent to them. The exams had focused their revision on both dive theory and PADI Standards, so they were already fairly relaxed.
Of course they are extremely excited about the next couple of weeks and keen to get started on the road to becoming a PADI Instructor. The next 2 days would continue their preparation, removing any last niggling doubts about their knowledge or ability so that they could concentrate fully on learning a new set of teaching skills that will make them effective Instructors.
Preparation Course Day 1
On the first day, following introductions, I was keen to make sure that they all understood that the whole point of doing a PADI IDC was not just to pass a PADI Instructor Exam! The main purpose was to learn the techniques that would make them a very successful Instructor in the future. Having said that, we spent an hour or so looking at the content of a PADI Instructor’s Exam. Afterwards, everyone felt more relaxed and confident. Not least because they knew, the work they had already completed through the Distance Learning course meant they could already pass some elements of the Instructor’s Exam and we hadn’t even started the course yet!
Naturally there were still a couple of areas that needed brushing up. Physics (as always) is one of them. It’s so very common for people to have difficulty with Physics, so I make sure that I explain some very simple and fun ways to learn the most difficult of subjects.
The PADI materials that teach Physics are very much the same as each other. So if people can’t understand a subject after learning it from their Divemaster course, I find that they are just as confused after reading the Diving Knowledge Workbook or the Encyclopaedia as all of the subjects are explained in a similar way throughout all PADI products.
If someone cannot understand a subject, then it needs to be explained in a very different manner. On the Preparation Course, people not only see a very fresh way to “learn” these subjects, but they also know that they can use the same methods to teach their future students.
Just before lunch, Ian, Saad and Istvan were able to prove to me and to themselves how much all of this helped by passing a mock Theory exam with flying colours.
The PADI Examiners expect PADI Instructor Candidates to be familiar with some Computer Software programs. The candidates will be expected to know their way around the Open Water, Rescue and Divemaster Prescriptive Lesson Guides. So the afternoon was spent explaining the benefits of all components of these guides, and also how to use function keys.
All three candidates had seen the Prescriptive Lesson Guides before, but they didn’t appreciate just how helpful they were. Nor did they know how to use them. This session proved to be very useful for them all.
Preparation Course Day 2
IDC candidates are often concerned about the quality of their skill demonstrations, so we set off to the beach at Sharks Bay, where we could talk in detail about several skills. There are many ways to demonstrate most skills, and we discussed different options for different students. After a couple of cups of coffee, we set up our equipment and made our way into the sea where we could spend time, practising skills, adjusting weights and generally feeling more comfortable underwater.
This was a wonderful exercise for all of the candidates, afterwards they felt much more at ease and they all told me that they had learnt different ways of tackling some of the skills.
The IDC stamina swim test can also cause concern if candidates struggled in this area during their PADI Divemaster course. They assume that they have to complete the swim even faster than at Divemaster. In fact, the IDC swim is a snorkel swim and it is not timed. Ian, Istvan and Saad were joined by Janet and I and we all enjoyed swimming along the reef at Sharks Bay. A curious Napoleon Wrasse also followed us along for most of the way!
As the candidates exited the water and relaxed over lunch at Sharks Bay, there was a definite feeling of relief in the air. Maybe this PADI IDC wasn’t going to be as tough as had been imagined?