advanced scuba certification

Ready to take your next step in diving?

So you’ve conquered open water and now you’re ready for the next underwater challenge? Diving the Spiegel Grove in Florida, visiting the graveyard at the bottom of Lake Jocassee, or taking an amazing dive vacation to Bonaire? We have you covered. Our instructors are certified to teach most advanced scuba diving certification courses both locally (inland), off the coast, & even in other countries. Advanced scuba courses can take the form of just sampling a few different speciality dives or going full-on into a specific course to earn your certification. These certifications allow you to dive deeper, longer, darker, with different gear configurations, & more.

You can find our advanced certification classes below. Certain dive certifications will have prerequisites you must meet before being eligible. You can find each certification’s prerequisites on the certification information page. If you are unsure on where you want to go with your diving adventure, we have you covered as well. 

If you’re interested in exceeding the recreational limits, send us a message as we have technical diving instructors on staff and would love to have a conversation about where you want to go with your diving.


Need help planning your dive education?

As you gain more experience and knowledge in diving, we understand how complicated it sounds when trying to determine what class is next right step for you. While there are several paths, the first step for *most* divers is getting your advanced certification. This certification increases your depth limit (to 100′) and gives you experience with different skill sets, which the majority of divers find helpful. You can read more about the different scuba certification levels by clicking the link.


As we are a Raleigh dive shop, much of our diving is down off of our coast, where the more interesting diving is at 100′ or below. Getting your advanced certification opens up our coast and several other areas of diving for you both domestically & internationally. We are happy to help map out your diving education & come up with a personalized plan for you. Our primary goal is to create confident & safe divers & this is another way we accomplish that objective.


Ready to get started? We want to focus on you & your education, so please fill out our dive education consultation request form & we will setup an appointment to talk with you (without interruption) about your scuba diving goals & objectives.

Advanced Scuba Diving Courses

Advanced Certifications Explained

Once you have achieved your open water certification, the next level is "advanced" diver*. This certification level expands both your knowledge level of diving in general as well as increases your depth limit to a maximum of 100'. If you plan on diving off the North Carolina coast, this is the minimum certification level we recommend (most of our cool stuff is below 60'). While you do NOT have to go this route if you'd prefer to simply "dive" into specific advanced classes that interest you, some classes do require you to have your advanced certification.

This course can generally be done over 2 or more different days depending on the classes you'd like to take and dive logistics.

Prerequisites: Open Water Certification

Depth limit: 100' (age dependent)
Minimum Age: 12

Requirements & process:

  • 5 "1st dives" dives from different 5 specialty diving certifications (WreckDeepBuoyancyNitrox, etc).
  • The student may pick 3 courses, but the deep & navigation courses are mandatory.

There is a big point of confusion between what an "advanced certification" is versus a "specialty certification". We talk more about it on the below linked pages however the explanation is fairly simple.

Your advanced diving certification is a new rating which, when earned, gives you a new depth limit. It's achieved by doing the 1st dive of 5 speciality certifications.

specialty certification is the full course in that specialty & gives you the knowledge, skills & certification in a very specific area (wreck, navigation, nitrox, etc.)

Prerequisites: Varies

Depth limit: Varies
Minimum Age: Varies

Requirements & process:

  • Each specialty certification will have its own specific requirements, prerequisites, & equipment needs.

You came, you saw, you conquered. A master diver is the highest achievable rating in a recreational diver's journey. While there are several branches of dive education (Recreational, TEC, PSD, etc.), this is the highest rating achievable in the recreational realm. The great news about this is instead of it being a class or certification, it's a rating. Once you have completed the below requirements, you simply apply for the rating and upon confirmation you've completed the necessary requirements, you receive it.

Prerequisites: Open waterRescue, 4-5 Specialties (dependent on the agency, all specialties must be from that agency)

Depth limit: 100' (age dependent) or 130' (with deep specialty certification)
Minimum Age: 15

Requirements & process:

  • 4 - 5 "specialty" diving certifications in the same agency
  • Rescue course completion
  • Minimum of 50 logged dives

Divemaster is often confused with Master Diver. Master Diver is the highest achievement for a recreational diver whereas divemaster is the entry level professional certification.

This certification takes weeks or months to achieve. As part of your training, you will observe & participate in live classes, work one on one with instructors to hone your ability to perform skills they teach students, perform swim tests, manage an unresponsive diver at the surface and much, much more.

A common misunderstanding is you will HAVE to be a professional once you complete this course. That is not true as a diver can select to become a non-active divemaster. So, you can further your education & choose to not actively work as a divemaster.

Prerequisites: Open WaterAdvanced Diver, current CPR & First aid credentials, Rescue

Depth limit: 100' (130' with deep diver certification).
Minimum Age: 18
Logged Dives: 40 to start, 60 to complete your divemaster certification.

Requirements & process:

  • Sit down for an interview with an instructor to plan your training
  • Manage your training schedule
  • Instructor signature for each element
  • Score at least 82 points (1-5 rating system) on your 24 skills assessment with at least one skill receiving a 5
  • Complete e-learning with a passing score
  • Pass final exam 
  • Pass Dive Theory exam (can be substituted by completing the Dive Theory e-learning)