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Subsea Technology Series

Stage 3 OPITO Certificate in Subsea Technology Systems, accredited by City & Guilds.

Course overview

The series consists of four units, as detailed below:

  • Subsea equipment and tools
  • Material technologies, subsea systems and flow assurance
  • ROV systems
  • Subsea controls

These self-study units enable the learner to select learning materials that suit their requirements. Units can be studied at the learner's own pace and should be studied in the order set out. The study time needed will vary from one unit to another, and from one individual to another – we recommend between 40 - 60 hours for each unit.

Learners can register for units individually or enrol for the complete series – units are non-transferrable and can only be assigned to one learner.

Each unit is assessed by examination and an individual certificate endorsed by City & Guilds awarded to successful learners. Each exam passed successfully will contribute to one Certificate of Unit towards 'The Certificate in Subsea Technology'. The Certificate will be awarded after all four Certificates of Unit have been accumulated.


Units are presented in a digital workbook PDF format.

Workbooks contain:

  • Syllabus breakdown
  • Training targets for learners to achieve by the end of each unit
  • ‘Test yourself’ questions
  • ‘Check yourself’ answers
  • Workbook activities
  • Chapter summaries.

Who is this for?

The Subsea Technology series is intended for:

  • New starts and experienced staff looking to gain an industry recognised qualification, or who wish to refresh their knowledge of subsea technology
  • Subsea technicians in the early stages of their career or technicians from other industries looking to transfer to the subsea industry
  • Managers and supervisors of oil, service and manufacturing companies looking to gain a solid knowledge base
  • New technical or engineering graduates
  • Administrative staff that require an introduction to the technical background and technical language.


There is a written exam at the end of each unit.

Exams can be held any time at an approved venue. There is no set time limit between starting a unit and sitting the exam.

When a learner is ready to take the exam an invigilator must be appointed on their behalf. The invigilator may be a Training Manager, Offshore Installation Manager or Senior Manager. The invigilator is responsible for the receipt of the exam papers, security of the papers, invigilation of the exam and return of the paper.

The invigilator must contact the Open Learning team at the UK office to arrange the dispatch of exams. Included with the papers will be an invigilation form for the invigilator's signature and rules and procedures for the exam.

The learners can also sit the exam at local college or learning centre.These arrangements must be made by the learner. Some colleges may charge an invigilation and room hire fee which the learner will be responsible for.

The examination is a two-hour closed book written exam. Section A has 20 short questions similar to the Test Yourself in the books. Section B comprises three questions of which two must be answered – these require good, neat, correctly labelled drawings and a good descriptor.

Pass Marks:

60%-74% - Pass

75%-84% - Credit

85%-100% - Distinction

‘Test Yourself’ questions are available in the workbooks to help you prepare for your exams.

There is no registration or examination fee. However, in order to be registered to sit the exam, the learner must have purchased each unit.

If learners do not achieve the required pass mark (60%) a re-sit exam can be arranged at no extra cost, only a pass grade will be awarded irrespective of the result. Should learners require a re-sit of the same unit more than once, there will be an examination fee of £30.00 GBP.

Exam Tips

The examination is a two-hour closed book written exam.

Section A

Section A comprises 20 short answer questions similar to the Test Yourself section in the workbooks.

Learners should:

  • Read and understand what is being asked by the questions.
  • Some questions have more than one answer.
  • Check your answer for errors.

Section B

Section B comprises three questions of which two must be answered (25 marks each split approx. 10 marks for the diagram, 15 for description) – these require neat, correctly labelled drawings and a good descriptor. All questions in the paper relate to the information given in the workbooks.

  • When taking exams, it's crucial for learners to thoroughly understand and address the questions asked. Often, learners may identify keywords in a question and write everything they know about that topic without considering the specific task outlined. 
  • Before writing responses, learners should carefully read the questions, plan their answers, and ensure they fully address all aspects of the question. Well-planned answers demonstrate a structured and professional approach. Responses must be clear, credible, and directly relevant to the question posed. 
  • It's essential to provide legible, credible answers and address all components of the question. Moreover, concise or insufficient reports, as well as inaccurate or poor-quality drawings, will result in lost marks. Written content should be easily readable, and the use of workplace-specific abbreviations should be avoided. Only piping and valve symbols provided in the Open Learning study book are acceptable, and marks will be deducted for incorrect symbols. 
  • Learners should not assume that the marker will understand references or accept omitted sections due to perceived obviousness. Reports on processes or equipment should be thoroughly explained, with operations clearly depicted in accompanying sketches.

Exam Procedures


Each digital PDF unit is £116.67 GBP + VAT.

Payment may also be made by way of:

  • Sage pay (card payment)
  • An authorised company Purchase Order

Terms and conditions: 

Customers are entitled to cancel an order and return the goods within seven working days of receipt - this will result in a full refund. Customers can cancel their order by contacting the team in the UK office and quoting the order number supplied. The refund will be paid within 30 days.

Any goods returned should be in their original condition. The customer is responsible for the cost and risk of loss or damage when returning the goods.

Course Products

  1. Full Course

    Open Learning

    Digital Download


    • Subsea Equipment and Tools
    • Material Technologies, Subsea Systems and Flow Assurance
    • ROV Systems
    • Subsea Controls
  2. Subsea Equipment and Tools

    Open Learning

    Digital Download


    1 workbook comprising of 10 sections

    Recommended study time: 40-60 hours

    • Topside facilities for different water depths
    • Oil industry engineering standards
    • Wellhead and hanger system
    • Production flowbase
    • Conventional xmas tree
    • Spool or horizontal xmas tree
    • Well intervention system
    • Protective structures
    • Subsea field layout
    • Case study
  3. Material Technologies, Subsea Systems and Flow Assurance

    Open Learning

    Digital Download


    1 workbook comprising of 19 sections

    Recommended study time: 40 – 60 hours

    • Basics of engineering materials and properties
    • Introduction to materials for subsea equipment
    • Applications of materials
    • Failure mechanisms
    • Cathodic protection and hydrogen sulphide
    • Coatings and surface protection
    • Basics of metal fatigue
    • The erosion process
    • The main subsea assemblies
    • Manifold design and insulation
    • Manifold facilities and flow management
    • Control system
    • Pipeline end manifold
    • High integrity pipeline protection system
    • Pipeline end termination
    • Corrosion, erosion and radio activity
    • Subsea separation
    • Main sensor systems
    • Well intervention vessels
  4. ROV Systems

    Open Learning

    Digital Download


    1 workbook comprising of 11 sections

    Recommended study time: 40 – 60 hours

    • General principles of an ROV
    • ROV basic principles
    • Safety considerations
    • Identification of main system components
    • Deployment methods and handling systems
    • Basics of ROV physics
    • Electrical basics
    • Communication basics
    • Basic ROV hydraulic system
    • Main sensor systems
    • ROV tooling suites
  5. Subsea Controls

    Open Learning

    Digital Download


    1 workbook comprising of 5 sections

    Recommended study time: 40 – 60 hours

    • Subsea productions control system basics
    • Subsea control hydraulics
    • Subsea communication systems
    • Subsea electrical systems
    • Computing systems, electronics and sensors