Certification Program

***2020 Renewal Forms - See full instructions below on the renewal process.
Instructor Renewal- save money by submitting online
Facility Renewal - MUST be sent in with this paper form to avoid a fee.
 

2020 AAUS Certification Program Renewals

Attention AAUS Instructors!   It is time for your annual AAUS-ITI Instructor Renewal.  Please note that this only applies to AAUS Instructors and OM Programs who have chosen to participate in the voluntary certification card program.  You must renew annually as an Instructor with International Training (ITI) to maintain status as an AAUS Instructor and be able to register and certify AAUS divers. 

STEP 1- AAUS Instructor Renewal

Paper renewal - Complete the Instructor Renewal Form and submit the annual instructor renewal fee ($210) via mail.  You may have already received a renewal package in the mail.

Online renewal - If you prefer to renew online at a reduced cost ($175) you may complete this process on the ITI website (www.tdisdi.com).  To do so, login to your Instructor Profile, and then choose ‘Tools’, ‘Renew Membership’ from the menu bar.  Complete the necessary information and submit the annual instructor renewal fee online with a credit card.  Online renewal fee increases after Dec. 15 ($210).

STEP 2- AAUS Facility Renewal

AAUS Facilities- as an AAUS instructor you must submit a paper Facility Renewal Form if you are the primary instructor/facility administrator at your AAUS facility.  A Facility Fee is not required for AAUS Facilities; you may indicate this in the payment field.  Submit this form via mail, fax, or scan and send as a pdf to (worldhq@tdisdi.com) with "AAUS Facility Renewal" in the subject line.  IMPORTANT NOTE- the online Facility Renewal process is not available to AAUS Facilities; AAUS Facilities that renew electronically online will be charged a Facility Renewal Fee.  AAUS Facilities should instead complete the paper Facility Renewal Form as instructed.

 STEP 3- SDI/TDI Facility Renewal

If you are an AAUS instructor and your Facility is also an SDI/TDI Training facility, you must submit a separate Facility Renewal Form, and a Facility Fee for that SDI/TDI facility.

Specific questions regarding the annual renewal process or online interface should be directed to ITI.  General questions about the AAUS Certification Program should be directed to the AAUS Certification program coordinator (Chris Rigaud, crigaud@maine.edu) or the AAUS office (Heather Albright, aaus@aaus.org).


In 2013, AAUS launched the AAUS Certification Program in cooperation with International Training (ITI).  This program provides AAUS and its members with a number of valuable benefits, only one of which is to provide recognized credentials and certification cards for AAUS Scientific Divers and Scientific Diving Instructors/ Diving Safety Officers.  This certification program is optional for all of our Organizational Members. 

Program Benefits

Instructional Freedom/ Independence
Conduct AAUS Scientific Diver training programs using the AAUS Standards.
Reduce or eliminate ties to recreational training agencies.
Choose educational materials that meet your needs.

Industry Recognition
AAUS certifications are supported and recognized by ITI, an international training agency.
No need to issue ‘equivalent’ recreational certifications as proof of Scientific Diver training.

Insurance
ITI and AAUS are currently working to make personal professional liability insurance specific to AAUS Scientific Diver training and certification available to AAUS Instructors.

Qualifications/Requirements
The program is open to any AAUS DSO or OM sanctioned instructor in active teaching status with their current training agency. Although participation in the Certification Program is voluntary, AAUS OMs and DSOs who wish to participate must adopt the most recent version of the AAUS Standards. Additionally, instructors must:
• Maintain current contact information with AAUS.
• Pay applicable dues and any debts owed to AAUS.
• Maintain good health and fitness and current AAUS diving medical exam.
• Maintain status as an Active Scientific Diver according to AAUS Standards.
• Participate in an AAUS sponsored DSO/Instructor Orientation session or attend 2 AAUS symposia, every 5 years.

Costs
Instructor Registration- AAUS DSOs and Instructors already affiliated with ITI will pay no initial fee to have the AAUS rating added to their profile. Instructors affiliated with another agency who wish to offer AAUS certifications will pay an initial fee of ~$160 (2019). Following initial registration, annual instructor fees will be ~$160-$200, depending on renewal method (2019). All instructor fees are payable directly to ITI. AAUS Instructors who also wish to become SDI/TDI Instructors should contact ITI-SDI/TDI directly;.

Diver Registration- AAUS scientific diver registrations/certifications will cost $35 each and include a 1-yr membership in AAUS. Diver registration fees will be collected from the Instructor and paid directly to AAUS.

How to Participate
Step 1- Complete the AAUS Certification Facility and Instructor applications.  Applications can be obtained from AAUS.
Step 2- Once approved as an AAUS Instructor, you will receive login/register information to create a profile on the ITI website (www.tdisdi.com).
Step 3- Register/report AAUS trained divers on the ITI website, through the AAUS portal.
Step 4- Pay AAUS for individual diver certification cards. Cards sent to instructor after students register with AAUS.

Below are some commonly asked questions about the program both for scientific divers and instructors.

For Scientific Divers

1)  What are the requirements to become an AAUS Scientific Diver?

AAUS requires scientific divers to have a higher level of training and proficiency than most recreational divers.  Participation in an AAUS-sponsored Scientific Diver training course with minimum of 100 hours of cumulative training including 12 training dives is required.  Additionally, AAUS Scientific Diver Certification requires that divers be affiliated with an AAUS Organizational Member (OM) to maintain active status.

2)  Where can I get trained and certified as an AAUS Scientific Diver?

AAUS itself does not train or certify divers.  Training and certification as an AAUS Scientific Diver can only be acquired through an AAUS Organizational Member (OM). Most AAUS OMs require divers to be employees or recognized affiliates in order to participate in their programs, and not all AAUS OMs participate in the Certification Program.  Please refer to the current AAUS OM list to find and contact an AAUS OM in your region.

3)  Can I apply/qualify as an AAUS Scientific Diver by showing documented experience and training?

Not usually.  AAUS itself does not train or certify divers.  Training and certification as an AAUS Scientific Diver can only be acquired through an AAUS Organizational Member (OM).  Some AAUS OMs may accept previous qualifications and training to expedite admission to their programs; others do not.   Please refer to the current AAUS OM list to find and contact an AAUS OM in your region.

4) How long is my AAUS Scientific Diver certification valid?

AAUS Scientific Diver certification is different than recreational diving certification in that it is not valid indefinitely.  While an AAUS certification card will document that you received training from an AAUS OM, certain elements of your certification expire and must be kept current (CPR/First Aid training, diver activity level, diver medical exam, etc.).  Additionally, AAUS Scientific Divers must be affiliated with an AAUS OM to maintain active status.

5)  I’m no longer affiliated with an AAUS OM but I want to maintain active status as an AAUS Scientific Diver.  Can I renew my certification directly with AAUS?

No.  AAUS itself does not certify divers.  Status as an active AAUS Scientific Diver can only be conferred by an AAUS Organizational Member (OM).

 For Instructors

1)  What are the requirements to become an AAUS Scientific Diving Instructor?

AAUS Instructor applicants must be:

a)     active AAUS Scientific Divers

b)     affiliated with and sponsored by an AAUS Organizational Member (OM)

c)     current scuba instructors with an internationally recognized training agency

d)     the OM Diving Safety Officer (DSO) or other approved instructional staff member

*  Additionally, Instructor applicants must have attended an AAUS DSO Orientation or attended two (2) AAUS Symposia in the past five (5) years.


2)  How do I apply as an AAUS Scientific Diving Instructor?

AAUS Instructors must be affiliated with and sponsored by an active and approved AAUS (OM); AAUS does not certify independent AAUS Instructors.  Additionally, AAUS Instructors may not offer AAUS Scientific Diver Certifications independently; affiliation with an AAUS Organizational Member is required. The application forms for AAUS Scientific Diving Instructors can be found here. Please note that both an AAUS Facility Application and an AAUS Instructor Application are required.

 

3)  Can I apply/qualify to be an AAUS Scientific Diving Instructor with AAUS directly?

No.  AAUS Instructor applicants must be affiliated with and sponsored by an AAUS OM Facility.  AAUS does not certify independent AAUS Instructors.

 

4)  I’m an SDI/TDI Instructor, how do I cross-over to be an AAUS Instructor?

There is no SDI/TDI to AAUS crossover process.  AAUS Instructor applicants must be affiliated with and sponsored by an AAUS OM.

 

5)  I’m no longer affiliated with an AAUS OM but I want to maintain active status as an AAUS Scientific Diving Instructor.  Can I renew my certification directly with AAUS?

No.  Your status as an active AAUS Scientific Diving Instructor is valid only while working under the auspices of an AAUS Organization Member.  AAUS Instructors may not offer AAUS Scientific Diver Certifications independently; affiliation with an AAUS OM Facility is required.