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Candidates who want to join Merchant Navy as an officer have to pass  Indian Maritime University common entrance test IMU-CET. After clearing IMU – CET the biggest confusion comes in mind that out of Diploma in Nautical Science, B.Sc. Nautical Science and B.Tech. in Marine Engineering which course is better and suitable for the candidate.

To join Merchant Navy in officer category there are two departments.

1. Deck Department

If you want to join Merchant Navy in Deck Department or Navigating Department then you should do either Diploma in Nautical Science or B.Sc. in Nautical Science. Whichever  course you do after completion of your course you will be posted as Deck Cadet on Merchant Navy ship and after promotions in 7 to 8 years you can become Captain of the ship.

2. Engine Department

If you want to join Merchant Navy in Engine Department then you should do B.Tech. in Marine Engineering after completing your Marine Engineering you will be posted as Training Marine Engineer on merchant navy ships and after promotions within a time period of 6 to 7 years you can become Chief Engineer of Merchant Navy ship.

Which Department is better? Deck or Engine Department?

Before selecting among Diploma in Nautical Science, BSC in Nautical Science or B.Tech. in Marine Engineering you must understand which department is better and as per your choice, then only you can make a wise decision.

Although Deck department and Engine department on merchant navy ships are equally good, however between Deck department and Engine department there are two very important differences.

1. Working conditions and work environment of Deck department are much better than the Engine department. The job of Navigating Officers does not demand too much hard work. Also most of the time they have to work The Wheel house of the ship which is a totally air conditioned place. In short the work of deck officers is less and the working environment is also good.

Marine engineers have to work in the engine room of the ship which accommodates ship’s machineries. Due to lots of noise of machineries and heat generated by engines, the temperature of engine room is always high. Also Marine Engineers have to work on the machinery with oil and grease. Therefore the work environment of Marine Engineers is very tough.

Therefore if you want easy work and good working environment then you should join navigating department.

 If you love technology and machineries then you should join engine department.

2. If you join Navigating department then after promotions you become Captain of the ship. Captain is called as the commander of the ship. You can say he is the top Boss of the ship and he commands it.

If you join Engine department then after promotions you become Chief engineer of the ship. His rank is equal to the captain of the ship.

As far as salary, rank, facilities and status is concerned Chief engineer and Captain are same. But when it comes to authority, power, respect in the industry then being a Captain is better than Chief engineer. At the same time Captain has more responsibilities and very hectic schedule. Anything goes wrong on the ship ultimately Captain is held responsible.

Relatively Chief engineer has less responsibilities and less work until all the machineries are running fine. So for the same salary and rank Chief engineer does not have to take that much tension.

The biggest advantage of Chief engineer is that after sometime when he wants career growth or feels like leaving shipping and settle ashore in office, then he has lots of job opportunities as technical superintendent worldwide in shipping companies.

But the captain of the ship does not have that much opportunities to settle ashore in office job.

So if you want to join Merchant Navy for a long-term and you are planning to sail on ship throughout your life then being a Captain is better.

But if you have a plan to work on ship for 10-15 years and then settle ashore in Singapore, Hong Kong China, Europe, India etc. then being a Chief engineer is better.

Based on above analysis you can decide whether you want to become Captain or Chief engineer, accordingly you can choose your course as well.

Difference between Diploma in Nautical Science and B.Sc. in Nautical Science.

Diploma in Nautical Science or BSc in Nautical Science which ever course you do, your career path is same. In the starting you will be posted as Deck Cadet on Merchant Navy ship.

But there are few differences between Diploma in Nautical Science and B.Sc. in Nautical Science and you must consider this before taking a decision.

1. Diploma in Nautical Science is a one year course whereas BSC in Nautical Science is a 3 years course.

2. Full name of Diploma in Nautical Science course is “Diploma in Nautical Science leading to BSc in Nautical Science course.” It means first you have to do diploma in nautical science course and after that during your posting as Deck Cadet on merchant navy ships you have to complete Distance learning program as well.

After completion of Distance learning program your Diploma in Nautical Science will become BSc in Nautical Science degree.

3. After Deck Cadet the next rank promotion is Third Officer. To become third officer, if candidate has done diploma in nautical science course then he should have minimum 18 months working experience on ship but if the candidate has done BSc in nautical science then he requires only 12 months experience.

4. There is not much difference in diploma in nautical science and BSc in nautical science. In diploma in nautical science you have to spend almost 6 to 7 lakh rupees where as for BSC in nautical science you have to spend 7 to 8 lakh rupees.

5. The advantage of diploma in nautical science course is that candidate has to spend only one year in the college and after that he is posted as Deck Cadet on ship and his salary starts. So he starts earning after one year only.

Whereas for or BSc in nautical science you have to study three years in the college and after that only you will be posted as Deck Cadet and your salary will start.

6. The biggest advantage of diploma in nautical science course is that in good colleges candidate can get job guarantee letter from good shipping company. So before starting his course his job is fixed in a good company. This is called sponsorship program.

But for BSC in nautical science course you do not get any company sponsorship. You can get a job during campus placement after completion of your course.

7. Diploma in nautical science course candidates have less theoretical knowledge and more practical knowledge.

Where as BSC nautical science course candidates are Much Better In theoretical knowledge which is very advantageous for future career.

8. If a candidate wants to do higher studies or wants to change his job profile after working for sometime in shipping industry then diploma in nautical science is not recognised by other streams and institutions.

Whereas BSc in nautical science is well recognised and candidate can do management courses, can apply for Administrative services and can go for higher studies also.

In short diploma in nautical science course has many advantages over BSc in nautical science course. you should choose BSc in nautical science course only if you are planning to leave shipping industry after doing some management course etc. Otherwise diploma in nautical science course is definitely better.

With the above article you can easily understand all three Courses and the differences. This will help you to choose correct course for yourself.

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