Shipwreck Preservation Society

of Newfoundland & Labrador

SPSNL is a training partner with the Nautical Archaeology Society (NAS) of Portsmouth, England. NAS offers courses in Foreshore and Underwater Archaeology in the UK, and around the world through their network of training partners. The NAS program aims to provide not just an introduction to the subject but also to offer people a chance to build their skills and experience, allowing them to take part in projects and fieldwork around the world, and perhaps to run their own projects. Anyone can take part in our NAS training and it's open to divers and non-divers alike. To participate in the diving portion of the course, participants need to already be certified Open Water scuba divers, and need to provide or rent their own diving gear.

CLICK HERE for information on the NAS Introduction course that SPSNL will offer later in 2017, given sufficient demand.

CLICK HERE for more information on the NAS Part I course that SPSNL offered on June 10 & 11, 2017.

The NAS training program consists of 5 modules:

  1. The first is a one-day Introduction course, which provides the basics on what nautical archaeology covers, a little on archaeological methods and some practice on 2-dimensional survey methods in a pool. This course is a prerequisite for taking other NAS training.
  2. The second is the two-day Part I course, goes into more depth on project planning, safety and logistics, search and survey methods, project reporting, and more practice of 2- and 3-dimensional survey methods in open water on a shipwreck.
  3. The third is the Part II certificate, which combines a short survey project (which puts your skills and knowledge into practice) and two days attendance at archaeology conferences, lectures and/or heritage events (to broaden your knowledge of the field of archaeology, its methods and debates). Part II is not run as a formal course, and is student-led with support and advice from a NAS tutor. 
  4. The fourth is the Part III certificate, which requires the participant to take short-courses from six of the following eight areas of archaeological, historical or nautical study: research and information technology, archaeological science, survey, excavation, recording, artifact conservation, ancient technology, or managing archaeology projects. Part III courses are offered around the world by NAS training partners.
  5. The last is the Part IV diploma, which provides experience so a field worker should be capable of supervising work at a site or running a project. Requirements include succesful completion of the Introduction and Parts I, II and III, work on three different archaeology sites for a total of 12 weeks, and completion of project report to journal publication standards.


CLICK HERE for more information on the NAS training program. For more details on the individual NAS modules, click on the course titles above.

Successful completion of the NAS Introduction & Part I courses will provide you with the skills and knowledge necessary to participate in SPSNL underwater survey projects in 2017 and beyond. They also provide undergraduate students in archaeology with the skills and knowledge required to do an Honours project on a local shipwreck.

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Bell Island Shipwreck Project

SPSNL is supporting the Bell Island Shipwreck Project in partnership with Daniel Rees, Rebecca Smith and Ken Keeping. The first round of survey dives on the PLM-27, Lord Strathcona and Saganaga were completed in early August. More survey dives are planned for this fall. Check the SPSNL Facebook group for details.


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