The teaching aids are flexible in application: maritime institutes and their teaching staff can use them in organizing and introducing new courses or in enhancing, updating or supplementing existing training material.
The programme of model training courses developed out of suggestions from a number of IMO Member Governments, following the adoption of the International Convention on Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for Seafarers (STCW), 1978.
Assisted by contributions from various Governments, IMO has designed the series of courses to help implement this Convention and, further, to facilitate access to the knowledge and skills demanded by increasingly sophisticated maritime technology.
The model courses each include a course framework (detailing the scope, objective, entry standards, and other information about the course), a course outline (timetable), a detailed teaching syllabus (including the learning objectives and competences that should have been achieved when the course has been completed by students) and guidance notes for the instructor. Many courses include background information for students in a compendium.