Home > Diving News > PADI® Open Water Diver Course Evolution Unveiled

PADI® Open Water Diver Course Evolution Unveiled

 PADI_Open Water Diver course_Ralph Erickson_Drew Richardson_Rosemary E Lunn_Roz Lunn_The Underwater Marketing Company


PADI unveiled the latest evolution of their popular PADI Open Water Diver course at the 2013 DEMA Show. The revisions include changes to knowledge development, confined water and open water training, as well as new media training materials such as the highly anticipated PADIOpen Water Diver Touch, a tablet app.  

The PADI Open Water course was built on a solid instructional foundation, and it is probably the most popular global entry-level diving course. However content updates were due, as well as opportunities for superior student-centered learning and confidence-building through refinements to in-water training. The revisions grew from comments and suggestions gathered from the entire PADI family, from the top five percent of PADI Members internationally (those who certify the most divers), from those conducting beta trials, from evaluation of diver incident reports, and from 13,700 surveys of new Open Water Divers.  

PADI Open Water Touch app_Rosemary E Lunn_Roz Lunn_The Underwater Marketing CompanyBesides changes to the course itself, the revised course introduces revolutionary student training materials, specifically the Open Water Diver Touch. The Touch integrates the manual text, learning objectives, video clips, and progressive self quizzes into an interactive learning experience. In addition, the new PADI Skill Practice and Dive Planning Slate provides PADI Instructors a new way to assess student confidence. The slate also guides students in dive planning.

“The PADI organization is dedicated to teaching diving in ways that are effective, engaging, and enjoyable,” says Drew Richardson, CEO and President of PADI Worldwide. “The revised Open Water Diver course revision applied instructional design, research and experience, along with new state-of-the-art media, keeping PADI Members on the leading edge of diver training.”

PADI Members participating in the revised beta trials shared their thoughts about the revised course:

·         “Students are more confident when it comes to their dives.”

 – Crystal Dive, Koh Tao, Thailand

·         “…confident students by the end of the course – more confident than students in the past.”

– Northwest Scuba, Ltd., Edmonton, Alberta, Canada

·         “Love it. I want to start integrating [course revisions] right now.”

– International Scuba, Carrollton, Texas, USA

·         “In open water, students were excited to try out what they did in the pool. … They knew the skills well, so it was a breeze in open water.”

 – Pavilion Dive Centre, Dubai, UAE

Ralph Erickson, PADI co-founder and wise teacher once said, “The future of diving is based upon changes in instruction. Those who are unwilling to change are going to be left behind by those who are willing to change.” 

There will soon be three options for completing the knowledge development portion of the PADI Open Water Diver course: 1. the Open Water Diver Touch (English available in January 2014), 2. the modernized Open Water Diver Online (English available in April 2014), and 3. the completely updated Open Water Diver Manualand Video featuring all new images, illustrations and video footage and available now in English in the United States and Canada. A limited release of English language materials are now available in the United States and translated course materials are anticipated mid-year 2014.

A complete list of new and revised course materials was in the fourth quarter 2013 editions of The Undersea Journal and Training Bulletin. PADI Members can also visit the PADI Pros’ Site and contact their PADI Regional Manager or Sales Consultant.

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