NAS recorder

Nautical Archaeology Society Courses

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At Atlantic Scuba we can teach some of the Nautical Archaeology Societies Courses, the ‘Skills Days’. The Nautical Archaeology Society (NAS) produce a range of courses, mainly around the subject of underwater archaeology.

They start with three online courses, the NAS Introduction to Maritime Archaeology Course, the NAS Intertidal & Terrestrial Archaeology course and the NAS Underwater Archaeology Course.

The online courses are not compulsory before starting the practical courses, they will however, give you a good basis for nautical archaeology. If you would like to enrol in both the ‘Introduction to Maritime Archaeology’ and ‘Intertidal & Terrestrial Archaeology’ courses OR the ‘Introduction to Maritime Archaeology’ and ‘Underwater Archaeology’ courses, you can select the ‘Combined’ course option that is relevant to you.

NAS Introduction to Maritime Archaeology Course £25 – includes: 1 year’s access to lessons, forums, course hand-outs and NAS Tutor online + NAS Log book + Free 1 Year’s Membership (Online Newsletter)

NAS Intertidal & Terrestrial Archaeology Course £25 – includes: 1 year’s access to lessons, forums, course hand-outs and NAS Tutor online

NAS Underwater Archaeology Course £25 – includes: 1 year’s access to lessons, forums, course hand-outs and NAS Tutor online

NAS Combined Courses £45 – includes: 1 year’s access to lessons, forums, course hand-outs and NAS Tutor online + NAS Log book + Free 1 Year’s Membership (Online Newsletter)

Registering for NAS Online courses is easy, you just need to follow the two simple steps below:

Step 1 – Create an account on the NAS ELearning Site.

Follow the link above which will take you directly to the ‘Create new account’ form. You will need to fill in the form with your details. Please note that each individual who wishes to create an account will need a different email address.

Once you have completed the form, click ‘create my new account’.  An email will be sent to your email address, click on the link in the email and this will confirm your account and you will be logged in to the NAS ELearning Site.

Step 2 – Enrol in your NAS Training Course

Once you have logged in to the site, you will see the courses which are available to you. Select the course you wish to enrol in and click on the course title.  You will then be taken to the PayPal page in order to pay for your chosen course and complete your enrolment.

You can pay for the course using a credit/debit card or using your PayPal account.

If you decide the bypass the eLearning courses and go straight to the ‘Skills Days’, this is where Atlantic Scuba can help.

NAS Skills Days

Recorder Days and Surveyor Days

  • These days are for divers and non-divers and take place either on underwater or intertidal sites
  • The Recorder Day complements the ELearning Introduction to Maritime Archaeology course
  • The Surveyor Days complements the ELearning Intertidal & Terrestrial Archaeology and the ELearning Underwater Archaeology courses
  • These field-based Skills days are either 1 or 2 days
  • Credits are only issued when a member undertakes the Skills day and the complementary ELearning course
  • The Recorder Day is a prerequisite for the Surveyor Days

NAS Skills Days at Atlantic Scuba

Once the ‘Skills Days’ have been completed, you may then continue along your path with NAS Maritime Archaeological Courses.

Maritime Archaeology Courses

Anyone can take these courses and members can gain credits toward a certification if they wish. There are no prerequisites unless noted (mainly in the Fieldwork category).

  • The courses fall into four main categories: Research, Pre-Fieldwork, Fieldwork (practical and classroom-based) and Post-Fieldwork.
NAS starter levels

NAS starter levels


For more information on how to get involved with fieldwork, see the NAS Timetable and visit the NAS website.
  • The NAS encourages participation by awarding members credits for non-NAS run fieldwork (2.5 credits pd) and NAS-run and NAS affiliate – run fieldwork (5 credits pd) (eg CITiZAN, TDP, SCAPE etc.)
  • To take part in NAS fieldwork you will need to take the ELearning Introduction to Maritime Archaeology + Recorder Day

Maritime Events

This is your opportunity to broaden your archaeological knowledge by attending archaeological conferences, lectures or seminars, museum tours or by participating in heritage events suggested by NAS
  • There are no prerequisites to attend maritime events
  • Members can gain 5 credits per day for participating in maritime events

Certification and Award

  • A member can achieve a Certificate in Maritime Archaeology once they have obtained 100 credits, presented at the NAS Annual Conference
  • A member can achieve an Award in Maritime Archaeology once they have achieved 300 credits and completed an archaeological report, presented at the NAS Annual Conference.
NAS Cert and Award

NAS Cert and Award

NAS Recorder Day

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NAS Recorder Day

Aims and objectives

The following aims and objectives explain what will be covered in both an Intertidal and Underwater Recorder Day. Please refer to the timetable for a breakdown of how the day will be spent.
The NAS Recorder Day aims to teach participants the following:
  • The aims of the NAS
  • To be aware of the basic principles of maritime archaeology
  • To introduce the wide variety of site types worked on by maritime archaeologists
  • To appreciate that maritime archaeology is not just the study of shipwrecks and is not always underwater
  • To recognise types of finds and how they should be dealt with
  • To understand the basic principles of survey/recording and monitoring and some of the common methods used on archaeological sites
  • To become familiar with the site and produce a sketch plan that can be used for further project planning
  • To demonstrate field techniques discussed in the classroom lectures

By the end of the day the participants will have met the aims by the following objectives:

  • Appreciate the differences between maritime and terrestrial archaeology, history and salvage, and the different types of maritime archaeology (e.g. coastal, intertidal and underwater)
  • Define key terms in maritime archaeology such as site, artefact and context
  • Describe the differences in preservation that are likely to be found between wet and dry sites
  • What to do with their finds in the UK (reporting process)
  • Photographing finds and site features
  • Videoing finds and site features
  • Site sketching
  • Using a map to plot features and find scatters (intertidal only/site dependant)
  • Using app(s) to plot the site in a wider context (intertidal only/site dependant)

Learning outcomes

By covering the learning objectives for the day participants should be able to understand what the NAS is, how they can get involved further and where to go for help. They will also understand how to be safe on site and how archaeological sites are linked. They will also be able to show an awareness that maritime sites are not only underwater and will be able to demonstrate the practical skills required to record a site.
Please note Timetable is provisional and may be subject to change (Timetable dependant on tide times or site access)
09.00 Meet / registration / paperwork
09.15 What are we working on?
10.00 Health and safety (explanation and paperwork)
10.30 Break
10.45 So how do we record a site? (practice run)
11.15 Recording a real site (diving practical 1)
13.30 Lunch
14.00 Recording a real site (diving practical 2)
15.30 Results, archiving and end of day discussion
16.30 Get involved and discover more
17.00 Course End