Advanced Open Water & the Adventures in Diving Program

So you’ve learned to scuba and you know it’s something you want to keep doing, but you’re not sure how to get to the next level? If so, the Advanced Open Water is designed for divers like you!

Advanced Open Water picks up right where the Open Water course left you. In fact, if you’re really motivated you can start your Advanced Open Water course as part of your Open Water Diver course. If you review the description of the Open Water Diver Course you will notice that in addition to the 4 required dives there is an optional 5th dive - the Adventure Dive. The Adventure Dive is more than a fun first dive as a certified diver, it can count as your first dive in either the Adventures in Diving program or the Advanced Open Water course!

Through the PADI system of diver education you are given great flexibility to increase your skills because the Adventures in Diving program and the Advanced Open Water certification are part of the same progression. Complete any 3 specialty dives and earn your Adventure Diver certification. Complete a total of 5, including the Deep and Underwater Navigation dives, and earn your Advanced Open Water certification. It’s that simple.

If this sounds good to you, read on!

The Adventure Diver Course

The Adventure Diver course is completely flexible, allowing you to pick any three specialties from the list below to define your own custom course based on your interests:

  1. Altitude Diver
  2. AWARE - Fish Identification
  3. Boat Diver
  4. Digital Underwater Photography
  5. Diver Propulsion Vehicle
  6. Dry Suit Diver
  7. Enriched Air (Nitrox) Diver
  8. Multilevel Diver
  9. National Geographic Diver
  10. Night Diver
  11. Peak Performance Buoyancy
  12. Underwater Naturalist
  13. Underwater Navigator
  14. Underwater Photographer
  15. Underwater Videographer

Once certified as an Adventure Diver, you are allowed the following advanced specialties which are reserved only for Adventure Divers and above:

  1. Deep Diver
  2. Wreck Diver

The Advanced Open Water Diver Course

The Advanced Open Water Diver course is an extension of the Adventure Diver course, offering choices from a slightly longer list of specialties:

  1. Altitude Diver
  2. AWARE - Fish Identification
  3. Boat Diver
  4. Deep Diver (mandatory)
  5. Digital Underwater Photography
  6. Diver Propulsion Vehicle
  7. Dry Suit Diver
  8. Enriched Air (Nitrox) Diver
  9. Multilevel Diver
  10. National Geographic Diver
  11. Night Diver
  12. Peak Performance Buoyancy
  13. Underwater Naturalist
  14. Underwater Navigator (mandatory)
  15. Underwater Photographer
  16. Underwater Videographer
  17. Wreck Diver

Aside from the two mandatory dives, the Advanced Open Water Diver course offers the same flexibility in choosing any 3 specialties as the Adventures in Diving Program. The added bonus of including the coveted Wreck Dive means you can include a Lake Michigan wreck dive charter trip as part of your course, if so desired (standard charter costs are extra).

This certification is given the distinction of being an advanced certification because it requires the inclusion of two dives that will increase your capabilities as a diver - the Deep Dive and the Underwater Navigation dive. In fact, some charter boat operators consider the Advanced Open Water Diver certification as a mandatory prerequisite for you to dive with them, including many Lake Michigan wreck dive charter boats.

Once your Advanced Open Water certification is complete, you are allowed the following advanced specialties which are reserved only for Advanced Open Water Divers:

  1. Cavern Diver
  2. Ice Diver
  3. Search & Recovery Diver
  4. Semiclosed Rebreather - Dolphin/Atlantis
  5. Semiclosed Rebreather - Ray

An additional opportunity earned as an Advanced Open Water Diver is the option to take what many divers consider the most rewarding PADI certification offered - the Rescue Diver course.

Two Phases per Program

Both the PADI Adventures in Diving Program and the Advanced Open Water Course consist of 2 phases:

  1. Knowledge Development
  2. Open Water Dives

These phases are detailed in the sections below.

Monkey Reading Adventures in Diving Manual

1. Knowledge Development

During the knowledge development phase you will get a brief introduction to each specialty dive you choose explore. The skills and knowledge learned are as varied as your interests, and you may want to browse several sections of your Adventures in Diving manual before deciding which dives interest you most.

Note that during the Advanced Open Water Course the Underwater Navigation dive will teach you basic navigation skills that will allow you the freedom to confidently lead your own dives. On the Deep Dive you will learn techniques to safely extend your dives to depths up to 100 feet, and if you choose to continue your adventure to complete the Deep Dive specialty course you will be allowed to take it all the way to the recreational limit of 130 feet!

Just like in your Open Water Course, the book work will cover the details for each dive and conclude with a brief knowledge review. Unlike the Open Water Course, once you've completed the knowledge reviews there's no exam or quizzes - the rest is just the diving!

During the brief classroom session with your instructor you will review what you have studied in the knowledge sections from the PADI Adventures in Diving manual to ensure you have the key concepts down, and you will be allowed to ask any questions you have during that session.

Although there are a few options available, for most students AquaMunkee Scuba will cover the knowledge development section using the following approach:

1. Independent, Self-Paced Study at Home
2. Completion of All Knowledge Reviews in Your Manual
3. Classroom Session to Discuss Knowledge Reviews
4. Additional Explanation / Question-and-Answer Session

On average, the entire home study portion of the Knowledge Development phase can be completed in 1-2 weeks at a leisurely pace.

Lake Wazee

2. Open Water Dives

With your knowledge reviews completed, it's time to get hands-on learning in a real diving environment like Lake Mendota, Devil’s Lake, Lake Wazee, or on a charter boat trip in Lake Michigan.

Since your specific dives will be based on the specialties that interest you most, only you can define your experience, but here are a few examples to get your imagination going:

Wreck of the Prins Willem V

The Great Lakes Wreck Diver

  1. Dive 1 - Underwater Navigation
  2. Dive 2 - Peak Performance Buoyancy
  3. Dive 3 - Search & Recovery Diver
  4. Dive 4 - Deep Diver
  5. Dive 5 - Wreck Diver

The Zen / Eco-Diver

  1. Dive 1 - Underwater Naturalist
  2. Dive 2 - Peak Performance Buoyancy
  3. Dive 3 - AWARE-Fish Identification
  4. Dive 4 - Underwater Navigation
  5. Dive 5 - Deep Diver
AquaMunkee is a Zen Diver
A Real Diving Technician

The Dive Skills Technician

  1. Dive 1 - Peak Performance Buoyancy
  2. Dive 2 - Underwater Navigation
  3. Dive 3 - Search & Recovery Dive
  4. Dive 4 - Night Diver
  5. Dive 5 - Deep Diver

The Keepsake Diver

  1. Dive 1 - Peak Performance Buoyancy
  2. Dive 2 - Underwater Navigation
  3. Dive 3 - Underwater Photography
  4. Dive 4 - Underwater Videography
  5. Dive 5 - Deep Diver
A Picture is Worth 1000 Words

The Paperwork

Once you have completed all of your diving the only thing left to do is fill out your certification paperwork, take your photo, and send you off with your temporary certification cards.

Within 2 weeks (typically closer to 1 week) you will have your lifetime certification as an Advanced Open Water Diver.

Course Price (no hidden costs)

- Adventure Diver (3 dives) - $150
- Advanced Open Water Diver (5 dives) - $200

Course Price Includes Everything You Need (no hidden costs)

  1. Training and certification
  2. Rental equipment - scuba, snorkeling gear, wetsuit, & wetsuit boots
  3. Air fills for all dives
  4. Adventures in Diving Manual and Data Carrier Slate

Required Forms for Training

  1. PADI Continuing Education Form - combines Safe Diving Practices, Liability Release and Medical Statement forms into one convenient form for continuing education.

AquaMunkee Scuba is a PADI training facility, focused on the PADI approach to diver education and also offering training through the related organizations DSAT/Tec Rec and Emergency First Response.