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GP Rating Course: Ins and Outs

GP Rating or General Purpose Rating course is open to students after they have passed 10th grade. This is a Pre-Sea training and was adopted in India on the request of Shipping Industry. This course replaced the former Deck Rating and Engine Rating courses.

GP Rating course ensures that ratings are prepared and trained to take up most tasks in both, deck and engine departments on board. Hence, they are more useful. The course covers many aspect of on-board work and creates more opportunities for Indian seafarers worldwide.

There are many job opportunities for Ratings. According to International Chamber of Shipping, merchant ships across the globe currently employ approximately 721,000 ratings.

Basic Outline

The Pre-Sea training takes 6 months. This course prepares Ratings to take up roles as Engine crew and Deck Crew. It combines training needed for both roles and hence a wider range of opportunities become available to those taking up the course.

The course includes personal development as well as basic ship knowledge. It helps students hone skills like team work, leadership, decision making and more importantly communication skills as they are expected to work with a crew from diverse backgrounds. All necessary knowledge about ships and shipping industry is provided. This includes nautical terminology, general rope-work, basic navigation, anchor work, bridge watch keeping, cargo watch, lifesaving, firefighting and much more.


To be eligible to take up this course from TMA one needs to meet the following eligibility criteria:-

  • Education Qualification: Minimum qualification required is being 10th passed from a Recognized Board. Candidates with higher educational qualifications can also apply.
  • Physical or Medical Requirements: The candidates should be physically and mentally healthy to meet the merchant shipping standards and rules. They shouldn’t suffer from color blindness and should have 6/6 vision in each eye. No eye glasses permitted.
  • Age Limit: One should be atleast 17 years old.

For more information about eligibility you can visit

Job Scope

There are many opportunities for Ratings. After completing this Pre-Sea training, one can join as crew in both, Indian & foreign shipping companies. They can work in either Engine or Deck department depending on their interest. After gaining required experience, one can seek to be promoted as Bosun, Able-Bodied Seamen / Engine Fitter etc.

Option to get promoted to an Officer level is also available to those who gain relevant experience and clear required examinations. Generally salaries for Ratings start from INR 20,000 per month and may differ depending on the kind of ship it is and the work that is expected.

This is a great course for those looking to start a career right after 10th or 12th. Are you one of them?


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Neha Gupta

A Professional writer with over 10 years of experience, I love writing and learning about new areas during the process. Writing about merchant navy has given me a close look at the sacrifices made by the seafaring community and it is a pleasure to bring to light, through my blogs, for all to see and view, the hard work and dedication of these unsung heroes i.e. the seafarers.

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