Dive Guide

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Once you book your course, our team will register you for class materials. You will receive an email with a link to your materials from the agency (SSI or SDI/TDI). Our training team can be reached at training@ecdivers.com if you have any questions about the course.

The SSI Dive Guide program provides you with the knowledge and training necessary to supervise and guide certified divers on recreational scuba dives (ISO 24801-3). The Dive Guide program is an introduction to the world of dive professionals. As a Dive Guide, you will be qualified to lead certified divers on a variety of scuba diving adventures. You will be in charge of safety, management, be able to help other divers with minor gear problems, and be able to lead dive excursions safely whether it be from shore or in the water. The goal is to create well-prepared, versatile, and marketable Dive Professionals. This course can be completed using only shore dives or can include boat dives depending on your requirements and weather conditions. Charter fees are not included.

Active status Professional Dive Guides may also:
  • Teach, supervise and issue recognition cards for the SSI Snorkel Diver program.
  • Qualify for the SSI Divemaster rating after completing the SSI Science of Diving Specialty program.
Dive Guides must not:
  • Conduct, teach, or assist in any SSI training programs for non-certified divers.


Why Become a Dive Guide?

Dive Guide is an introduction to what it’s like to be a dive professional. Many people who are considering whether or not being a dive professional would be a good fit for them use this program as a “litmus test” to get a feel for what it’s like to work with and be in charge of one or more divers on a dive excursion. This program is also part of the pathway towards becoming a dive instructor.  While Dive Guide is built for, and tailored to, divers interested in becoming a dive professional the course also offers you a chance to become more prepared and confident to plan and conduct your own dives with your friends and family. This program can result in either a professional or non-professional ranking depending on what you prefer.

Before Class

  • Minimum age of 18
  • Diving medical signed by an MD
  • Minimum of 40 logged dives (totaling 25 hours or more)
  • Certified Stress & Rescue
  • Certified Deep Diving or proof of relevant experience
  • Certified Navigation Diving or proof of relevant experience
  • Certified Night / Limited Visibility Diving or proof of relevant experience
  • RECOMMENDED: Certified Nitrox (up to 40%)


  • Provide your own Total Diving System for local diving with the exception of cylinders and weight

Dive Guides are required to come to class equipped with professional quality gear. The following items are required per Standards

  • Mask
  • Snorkel
  • Fins
  • BC with power inflator
  • Weight system
  • Gas delivery system with cylinder, regulator, & alternate air source
  • An information system with SPG, depth, and time (a dive computer is required)
  • Exposure suit appropriate for the environment with appropriate ballast
  • A cutting device
  • A compass (can be integrated into a dive computer)
  • A signaling device for deploying from depth (an orange DSMB surface marker buoy is recommended, but follow local guidelines)
  • A reel or spool (appropriate for the maximum planned depth)
  • One (1) surface signaling device (whistle or similar)
  • Logbook (physical or digital)
  • All academic sessions and online training (typically four (4) zoom sessions)
  • Two (2) pool/confined water skill development session of 60 minutes or more
  • Water fitness evaluation
  • Presentations & evaluations of briefing & guiding in shallow, night, & deep water
  • Presentation and review of in-water rescue skills
  • Dive Guide final exam with a passing score of at least 90%
  • Maximum of eight (8) students per instructor

Divemaster Upgrade

The SSI Divemaster rating recognizes that you have the knowledge and training necessary to perform the duties of a certified assistant. These duties include assisting SSI Instructors in conducting entry-level and continuing education scuba training programs. The additional training needed for a Dive Guide to upgrade to Divemaster is simply to complete the Science of Diving program. The Science of Diving program is a classroom only, information-based program that raises the general dive knowledge of the dive guide to that of an Instructor. The Science of Diving program consists of five concentrations including:

  • Decompression
  • Physiology
  • Physics
  • Environment
  • Equipment


As a Dive Guide candidate, you can enroll in both programs concurrently to expedite the training process and potentially save money. Certified Divemasters carry all of the same qualifications as a Dive Guide plus you can:

  • Act as a certified assistant for all SSI recreational courses
  • Assist during open water training dives by taking no more than two (2) students at a time on excursion dives
  • Qualify as a Training Specialist for the SSI Ecology Specialty programs
  • Enroll in an SSI Assistant Instructor and Instructor Training Course

Class Forms

Below you will find links to REQUIRED class forms. These forms must be reviewed in their entirety before participating in any ECDivers in-water program. Arrival to class with incomplete documents may result in a forfeiture of that class date. If you have any questions or need assistance in completing the class forms please email our training department at training@ecdivers.com.