2nd International PhD-student Course in Scientific Diving and Documentation Techniques

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General information

The aim of the course is to give you important tools about using SD documentation techniques when illustrating your research and conducting empirical studies in the marine environment using SD techniques. Several of the skills provided during the course are required for the European Scientific Diver (ESD) certification. Documentation after this course can then be used if you apply for the ESD certificate.


  • Illustration techniques using scientific diving underwater digital photography; handling of photographic equipment, in water, optimization of lighting, macro- and wide angel photography, composition of picture, imaging in Photoshop.
  • Underwater digital photography for empirical studies including stereo-photography to quantify changes in the environment, quantification by visual census methods, underwater photography to study distribution and coverage and alternative methods such as sledges, drop-videos and underwater observatories.
  • Stereo-video system techniques for quantitative analysis and behavior of mobile organisms.
  • Medical examination and CPR course, which are required for diving during the course. 
  • Rules and regulatory frames of Scientific Diving, dive planning and risk assessment, repetition of dive medicine and rescue techniques. 

The course will be conducted as a 12 day intensive course at the marine field station Kristineberg, Sven Lovén Centre for Marine Sciences in Fiskebäckskil, Sweden. The course will comprise a few introductory lectures but will mainly focus on practical hands-on sessions using scientific diving documentations techniques and learning how to conduct safe practice scientific diving. 


Day 1. Introduction, safety regulation and practical dive safety for scientific divers;
Day 2. Refreshment dives, dive planning, risk assessment of safe practice scientific diving techniques and rescue scenario training;
Days 3-6. Illustrating your marine research using scientific diving underwater digital photography;
Days 7-9. Using scientific diving underwater digital photography for empirical studies;
Days 10-11. Stereo-video system techniques for quantitative analysis and behavior of mobile organisms;
Day 12. Examination;
Day 13. Departure.

Learning outcome:

Several of the skills provided during the course are required in the European Scientific Diver (ESD) certification, which is a mobility certificate within Europe. Therefore documentation after the course will be provided to the students, which can then be used when they apply for the ESD certificate. After completion of the course the Ph.D. student is expected to have received tools needed to use SD methods and scientific diving documentation techniques:

  • to illustrate their marine research;
  • to be able to conduct empirical studies in the marine environment using SD techniques. 
Contact Person: Maria Asplund (maria.asplund@gu.se)


The highlighted icons, represent the fields of education (in compliance with ISCED Classification) engaged during this course/programme.


Venue: Sven Lovén Centre for Marine Sciences
Kristineberg, Sweden

The Lovén Centre Kristineberg
Kristineberg 566, SE-451 78 Fiskebäckskil


  • Admitted to third cycle education, graduate students in marine science disciplines. Master students and post-docs may also be accepted;
  • A dive certificate; either a recreational (sports-) dive certificate corresponding to CMAS** or PADI rescue diver or a professional Swedish S30 or any other, according to IDSA level 1 standards; 
  • At least 20 logged dives whereof at least 5 dives with a max depth of at least 18 m;
  • Previous cold-water diving and experience of diving with drysuit;
  • A medical health examination for work diving according to Swedish Work Environment Authority's provisions AFS 2006:5 or corresponding foreign health examination less than 5 years ago (if below 40 years of age) and less than 2 years ago at the time for the course.

Application Procedure:

A short abstract (max 200 words) describing the applicants research and how the applicant can foresee the usage of scientific diving documentation techniques within their research (if applicable), should be sent in with the application to the course. Students should also provide documentation regarding their medicad health examination and diving certification (dive certificate, log book and experience in cold-water diving and diving with drysuit).

Application deadline: May 31st, 2015


The grading scale comprises Fail, (U), Pass (G).


Academic level: PhD


Required steps in order for a student to pass the course:

  1. Oral presentations of the documentation produced during the course and how the PhD students aim to apply the scientific documentation techniques in their research; 
  2. Showed proof that they can make a dive plan and a risk assessment for scientific diving; 
  3. Active participation during the course; 
  4. All scheduled moments during the course are mandatory.

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