IMCA Diving Certification Schemes

IMCA runs a certification scheme for the following three positions only:

  • Air Diving Supervisor (ADS)
  • Bell Diving Supervisor (BDS) – For more information on the now revised examination can be found here
  • Life Support Technician (LST) – For more information on the launch of the revised IMCA LST exam here

For any other positions, please see our diving training and certification page for details on relevant issuing bodies and IMCA guidance.

Certification Process

The certification process can be summarised as follows:

  1. Meet the entry level criteria (such as holding a recognised diver certificate)
  2. Complete IMCA-approved training (trainee air, bell or ALST)
  3. On successful completion of a course, work at the trainee/assistant level, gaining supervised hands-on experience offshore. Acceptable experience can only be gained and logged while working for a contractor member of IMCA’s Diving Division.
  4. Be put forward by the employer to sit and pass the relevant IMCA examination(s) (see below) to become an IMCA-certified diving supervisor or life support technician.

Changes in IMCA exam resit protocol, can be found here

Certification Fees

Candidates must complete the application process within 120 days of application.  Failure to do so will require them to reapply in full and pay another application charge.  If IMCA has requested more information from the applicant and it has not been provided within 120 days of the application, the candidate will have to reapply in full and pay another application charge.

Initial Application + one main module examination£ 395.00
Legislation modules when booked with initial exams£ 100.00 each
Standalone legislation modules£ 250.00 each
2nd attempt for main module (legislation/s + £100 each)£ 395.00 each
3rd attempt for main module (legislation/s + £100 each)£ 500.00 each

IMCA Examinations

Once a trainee offshore air or bell diving supervisor/assistant life support technician has logged the required hours, their employer can put them forward to IMCA with a recommendation that they be entered for the relevant examination. IMCA does not accept examination applications from private individuals.

There are multi-choice examination modules for air diving supervision, mixed gas/bell diving supervision and life support, as well as optional legislation modules which candidates can choose to take relevant to the parts of the world in which they might work. The examination is electronically delivered.

A list of exam dates and locations, and provisional exam dates and locations, can be found here.

On demand exams will still be available but there will be an additional charge to cover the exam center’s costs. This will likely to be in the region of £1000.00 and will be on top of any IMCA exam fee listed above.  On demand examinations are held around the world – IMCA has established arrangements with venues in more than 35 countries and liaises with relevant organisations in other locations as required to identify venues which are reasonably convenient for candidates.

IMCA only accepts candidates for IMCA examinations who have been nominated by contractor members of the IMCA Diving Division.  Candidates for IMCA examinations need to be put forward by nominated individuals within their companies, who will have access to the relevant forms, fee schedules and contact details.


Candidates must achieve a minimum of over 70% in each of the sections and must also achieve a minimum of 75% over the whole examination to pass.

IMCA Air Diving Supervisor (Module 1)2 hours 30 minutes100 questions
IMCA Air Diving Supervisor – UK legislation (1A)30 minutes30 questions
IMCA Air Diving Supervisor – Norwegian legislation (1B)30 minutes24 questions
IMCA Bell Diving Supervisor (Module 2)2 hours 30 minutes100 questions
IMCA Bell Diving Supervisor – UK legislation (2A)30 minutes23 questions
IMCA Bell Diving Supervisor – Norwegian legislation (2B)30 minutes26 questions
IMCA Life Support Technician (Module 3)2 hours80 questions
IMCA Life Support Technician – UK legislation (3A)30 minutes24 questions
IMCA Life Support Technician- Norwegian legislation (3B)30 minutes22 questions

Certificate Verification

A list of withdrawn (including lost and stolen) certificates is maintained on this site – Withdrawn and suspended IMCA/AODC certificates.  To verify a certificate, please check the list and then contact IMCA Accreditation & Certification Team if necessary.  If any diving contractor member has any doubts on the currency of any diving supervisor certificate number, please contact

Further Information

Full details are set out in the certification scheme document:

For details on eligibility and sitting the examinations, please contact IMCA Accreditation & Certification Team.

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