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Boat driving schools, who "Accredits" them?

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Old 09-13-2011, 11:28 AM
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That doesn't asnwer his question.

Buck
I think Griff pretty well hit it on the head here, but let me see if I can clarify a bit more. When something is “accredited,” that generally means that some organization set a standard, then somebody (sometimes that same organization) audits and accredits you as having met those standards. So if you meet the standards, you’re accredited. As you might guess, this requires a market big enough to support the cost of the infrastructure.

I’d suggest that ISO certification is probably an example of how this works. A number of years ago, our friends in Europe decided that if you wanted to sell goods or services over there, you’d better meet certain quality requirements. (All kidding aside, it was just a huge piece of protectionist legislation, but we won’t get into that.) So ISO (the International Standards Organization) came up with a set of standards that one needed to meet if they were to become “ISO Certified.”They next needed to accredit a number of companies to audit companies wanted to become ISO Certified because ISO decided that they were in the standards business and not the auditing to standards business. Once they had these accredited auditors in place, they could then go out and certify that one was (or wasn’t) ISO Certified. Make sense?

Now let’s get back to high performance boating schools and who accredits them. Remember I noted that you needed a pretty big market? Want to guess how big the market for these schools is? That’s right, Tres Martin pretty well has the very limited market covered – and he does it very well. So I’d propose that nobody accredits this type of school because the market just isn’t big enough to support it. Hopefully that answers the question.

Last edited by Too Stroked; 09-13-2011 at 06:30 PM.
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Old 09-13-2011, 11:54 AM
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Too Stroked,
Your last paragraph nails it!
My question was not to single out any school, but to learn specifically who the Accreditation Agency is, what the standards are, and how does one become Accredited.
The question is still unanswered: Who accredits these courses??-or is it a "marketing tool", with a meaningless pharse.
Thanks again for the responses!
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Old 09-13-2011, 12:01 PM
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Too Stroked,
Your last paragraph nails it!
My question was not to single out any school, but to learn specifically who the Accreditation Agency is, what the standards are, and how does one become Accredited.
The question is still unanswered: Who accredits these courses??-or is it a "marketing tool", with a meaningless pharse.
Thanks again for the responses!
I honestly think the answer is "nobody."
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Old 09-13-2011, 12:43 PM
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Nobody.

Let's face it, for whatever the reasons - be it realized or imaginary - people and companies are proud of their accreditations, and they generally plaster them all over their marketing materials and websites. I can't find any at TM.

But that's not necessarily a bad thing, and it should not be construed as a such. TM is the best at what they do, and frankly they don't need anyone to legitimize them with some lousy stamp of approval.

Most standards organizations and accreditation agencies are nothing more than happy horsesht peddlers with their hands out, and their entire existence being dedicated to preserving their own infra$tructure. I$O is a prime example. It's a meaningless badge of conformity.
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Old 09-13-2011, 12:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fast Shafts View Post
Too Stroked,
Your last paragraph nails it!
My question was not to single out any school, but to learn specifically who the Accreditation Agency is, what the standards are, and how does one become Accredited.
The question is still unanswered: Who accredits these courses??-or is it a "marketing tool", with a meaningless pharse.
Thanks again for the responses!
Great thread. Ive wanted to ask this question for years but didnt want it to be taken the wrong way or offend anyone.
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Old 09-13-2011, 02:45 PM
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The correct answer, as several of you have pointed out, is no one.

There is no overseeing agency or body accrediting these schools.

It's a valid question.

However, just as valid (at least to me) is that an insurance company will provide a discount for those who complete the Tres Martin course. It's safe to say—with all due respect to those of you in the insurance business—that insurance companies do not like losing money. If an insurance company is willing to offer you a discount on your rate because you took a particular driving course, and will only offer a discount for completion of that particular driving course, that speaks volumes.

Think of it as economic accreditation/validation.
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Old 09-13-2011, 04:39 PM
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The "true" purposes of an "accreditation" is for liability purposes. Generally this takes years to establish, and it usually starts up with subject matter experts (SME) with the original backing of some type of governmental agency with respect to training or an association with pattern & practice of evaluation of course content that would be acceptable via governmental standards. There are models for just about every type of training that is to be vetted. But just because it's accredited, the certification could be worthless unless the association mirrors it's accreditation process to that which acceptable in court by a governing body.

For example, you hire a veteran racer with years of experience in racing boats. Two weeks after the course you flip your boat and it lands on top of another you kill someone. The litigation stream is endless on this, this will get drilled down to what was taught by the veteran boat racer. He will be shredded unless he be backed up via an acceptable certification. Just because he has the experience doesn't mean he is teaching the correct content or in an approved manner. Lawsuits change course content constantly.

My guess is that ultimately Tres is backed by some type of USCG certification and his course was vetted by some type of governmental agency. I believe he is teaching Border Patrol advanced driving techniques at the Federal Law Enforement Training Center in GA. His course would have to be vetted and approved.

So to answer your question, call the school and ask them, and find out who certified them, then drill down the accrediting agency and drill down on the means in which they accredit the class. Hope this makes sense.
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Old 09-13-2011, 05:03 PM
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The "true" purposes of an "accreditation" is for liability purposes. Generally this takes years to establish, and it usually starts up with subject matter experts (SME) with the original backing of some type of governmental agency with respect to training or an association with pattern & practice of evaluation of course content that would be acceptable via governmental standards. There are models for just about every type of training that is to be vetted. But just because it's accredited, the certification could be worthless unless the association mirrors it's accreditation process to that which acceptable in court by a governing body.

For example, you hire a veteran racer with years of experience in racing boats. Two weeks after the course you flip your boat and it lands on top of another you kill someone. The litigation stream is endless on this, this will get drilled down to what was taught by the veteran boat racer. He will be shredded unless he be backed up via an acceptable certification. Just because he has the experience doesn't mean he is teaching the correct content or in an approved manner. Lawsuits change course content constantly.

My guess is that ultimately Tres is backed by some type of USCG certification and his course was vetted by some type of governmental agency. I believe he is teaching Border Patrol advanced driving techniques at the Federal Law Enforement Training Center in GA. His course would have to be vetted and approved.

So to answer your question, call the school and ask them, and find out who certified them, then drill down the accrediting agency and drill down on the means in which they accredit the class. Hope this makes sense.
I also read where the Coast Guard was sending its own to his school to learn how to handle a certain kinda of craft.

That says alot I think, but not an official endorsement. always heard great stuff and the guy and the course.
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Old 09-13-2011, 05:12 PM
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Default Have You Taken the Tres Course?

How about a poll of those who have actually taken the Tres class. What do you think about it? Was it what you expected? Would you do it again? Do you feel you are a better driver today? Was it worth the cost? Just curious
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Old 09-13-2011, 06:30 PM
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And I might add that "accredited" doesn't always mean better. Going back to my ISO discussion, I remember one year at the boat show many years ago when a competing marina selling Bayliners (across from our Fountains) proudly posted a sign saying that Bayliner was one of the first marine maufacturers to receieve their ISO registration. The implied message was that Bayliners were of higher quality than Fountains.

I also remember correcting one of their salesmen by telling him, "ISO registration doesn't mean you're better. It just means you have procedures in place that say you're very consistent." I then added, "And appropriately, every one of your Bayliners is pretty consistently junk." The sign disappeared shortly afterwards.
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