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New RYA training charts - Time zones - rant

Phoenix of Hamble

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East Coast
hee hee....

No.... some of the questions are set during the summer and some during the winter... which changes whether or not DST needs to be allowed for...
 
Joined
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Grey Havens Marina - Elves pontoon
[ QUOTE ]
I agree the RYA has made a horlicks of the presentation of this

[/ QUOTE ]

I believe Skysail, Somerset, some notable others - and li'l ol' me - are now broadly in agreement with this perspective. For a very long time, it has been necessary for a skilled instructor ( read 'teacher' ) to 'interpret' what the RYA thought they wanted, with what the sea needed kept firmly in the foreground. This is one of those areas.

It's not about military precision, but rather about 'teaching the student' rather than 'teaching the syllabus'. This is not the first time the RYA has dropped a serious bollock! Remember the introduction of the charting software traing CD?

The technique of having the nav table clock on navigation time ( UTC/GMT/ Zone Time 'Zulu' ), and one's social watch in the handbag on pub time, works well. Once secure in the French marina of choice, what's the problem with strolling up into town, having a quiet pastis or 'pression' at an outside table somewhere, then calmly re-setting the social watch to the time shown on the church clock?

And if anyone here thinks fiddling about with clock settings will stop one's lady from turning up just whenever she feels like it, then that someone is deeply into self-delusion!

/forums/images/graemlins/laugh.gif
 

KenMcCulloch

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I haven't seen these materials but it seems from the accounts given above that they are quite difficult to use for teaching and for the student to learn from. I design educational materials as part of my work but not for the RYA/forums/images/graemlins/ooo.gif

I think maybe there are two parts to the problem. One is that Mrs Emjaytoo's classs includes people whose grasp of the techniques for calculating tidal heights and rates is limited. Clearly if people are struggling with the basic concepts then complications like multiple time zones are only going to compound the difficulty. You really need to sort out the basic concepts of tidal prediction before doing anything more complex.

The second thing is to do with the way the learning activity is set up. Most of us can grasp the idea of time zones and the related idea of DST without many problems in our lived experience. If it was all that difficult then there would be thousands of us forever missing flights and so on because we had not understood why and by how much to adjust our watches. Doing the same kind of thing in the abstract as an exercise in a classroom is simply much more difficult, and it doesn't sound as though the designers of the materials have fully taken that into account.

I would favour teaching people to work in UTC for everything and only to use local time when absolutely necessary.
 

Leighb

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8 Aug 2007
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Suffolk
[ QUOTE ]
Mine ........ when not actually skippering is challenged by the terms 'left' and 'right' (as I found out to my cost whilst driving through Malaga).

[/ QUOTE ]

I have had a similar problem, which was solved by the simple measure of her holding the map upside down when traveling South /forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif and vice versa naturally. We also have to have red and green tape on the relevant shrouds.
 

firstmatewendy

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13 May 2007
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Boat: Veerse Meer, Me: Kent, UK
Well-said Ken - you've hit the nail on the head. I've since had an exchange of emails with Simon Jinks who, whilst very pleasant and helpful, can't see why there's any problem compared to the previous charts/tables.
People dealing with things which are a) outside of their personal experience and b) beyond their conceptual grasp, at least at this stage, is a recipe for confusion and despondency. Roll on next lesson!! /forums/images/graemlins/wink.gif
 

peterb

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16 May 2001
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Radlett, Herts
[ QUOTE ]
Y'see, while there was no mention of Time Zones anywhere in the RYA training syllabus - therefore no requirement to teach it, and no allocated time - the CS/YM papers invariably required a candidate to do 'TZ' conversions between UTC( GMT ) and BST... "All times are in BST. All answers to be given in BST." ( The almanac uses UTC )

[/ QUOTE ]

That's not quite true, but the way in which it's not true actually supports your argument. Section 4 of the shorebased syllabus covers the measurement of time, including UT, LMT, standard time and zone time. But which syllabus? YM Ocean!

So the only place that instructors are told to teach about time zones is in the Ocean syllabus, but questions are asked about it at CS level. Something wrong somewhere!
 
Joined
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Grey Havens Marina - Elves pontoon
[ QUOTE ]
Something wrong somewhere!

[/ QUOTE ]

Yes, you're spot on, 'Peterb'. Perhaps the salient point is that the RYA Training people have known about this problem for quite some years, for it's been pointed out to them by experienced instructors from all sorts of backgrounds - and by students like Mrs MJ2, too, year after year - so they've no real excuse. Senior instructors running 'Recognised' sea schools could not afford to be too insistent with their input, for it really is not welcome, and a healthy and cordial relationship with the RYA's 'glitterati' remains important to the 'business continuation plan'.

There's a very strong culture of 'If I want your opinion, I'll give it to you' within the RYA, but I decided many years ago - as do many yotties - that if they wanted to behave as they do, they could do it without my annual contribution. Mind you, I draw a distinction between the apparatchiks at Hamble Towers and the volunteer examiners, quite a few of whom have no personal 'bees-in-bonnet' at all....

/forums/images/graemlins/laugh.gif
 

dukes4monny

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4 Feb 2008
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Hi all, I am currently doing an RYA YM theory course, and most of the students seem to be finding the whole TZ thing a bit of a nightmare.
I think that most people are quite happy with working with TZ's, but the literature (questions and almanac) for the course define the TZ's in what seems to be a rather strange way.........
It seems that the 'standard' way of defining TZ's is UT+1 or UT+2 etc.
The RYA literature refers to the TZ for the southern peninsula on chart 3 as being UT-1.
For those of you reading this who have used 'UT' TZ's in practice, which is the correct definition: UT+1 or UT-1?
Our instructor has now told us to treat any question asked in UT-1 as being UT............except if it involves tidal stream calcs........./forums/images/graemlins/confused.gif
Also, is it normal to have North / South time zones on one chart like they are using?
Why can't the RYA use REAL charts with REAL almanacs and REAL calculations?

If I was being cynical I would say that the RYA were trying to save money by having a 'standard' course that they can sell anywhere in the world.
Having done my DS theory years ago, thoroughly enjoying it and getting 100% in the final exam, I am not enjoying this course at all.
An RYA customer.
 

Sailfree

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18 Jan 2003
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Nazare Portugal
[ QUOTE ]

I would favour teaching people to work in UTC for everything and only to use local time when absolutely necessary.

[/ QUOTE ]

Yes I agree you do need an understanding of TZ's though as looking up tide times say for secondary ports in France you need to be working in French Time.


I don't understand why the RYA made this so difficult. Doing a passage plan from say the Solent to make the cill at Carteret in June will soon sort out those that understand local times, summer time and currents? Its practical and students can see the relevance.

I do agree though to work in only one time zone whenever possible and like you use GMT/BT/UTC/Zuly time (or whatever is politically correct now) and adjust it to local time when necessary to use local tide tables.
 

greenscombe

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11 Oct 2005
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15
Thanks for your lucid account that has shed some light on this thorny issue Skysail. I found the 'RYA speak' in the 2008 shore based YM materials relating to time zones illogical, inconsistent and incomprehensible. It messed up all my subsequent calculations of EPs, CTS, Tidal heights etc to the point where it was a total distraction from the main issues in hand and I was about to give up.
Armed with your clarification, I feel inspired to have another go. Thanks again.
 
S

Skyva_2

Guest
The 'standard' way is that time zones east of Greenwich are -0100, (which is UT+1), -0200 (UT+2), etc - look at a real almanac for a French port.

West of Greenwich is time zone +0100, etc.

UT is the time zone 7.5 degrees either side of Greenwich, -0100 is the next 15 degrees East, etc.

I agree it is not intuitive, but the RYA is not responsible for nautical convention.
 

dukes4monny

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4 Feb 2008
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Thanks Skysail, that does make sense.....the fog is starting to lift.

As far as I can tell, the problem is that some of the questions in the RYA 'Exercises and course information' booklet, the times are given as UT-1...which is +0100, and they should have been given as -0100 which is Southern Peninsula standard time.
In which case, we should have been told to change all references to UT-1 to -0100 (or UT+1)........does this sound correct?

As previously mentioned, our tutor has told us to ignore UT-1 and call it UT instead........which has further confused us.

Oh well, chartwork exam on Wednesday........wish me luck....I'll need it.
 
S

Skyva_2

Guest
Yes, look at the link in my post above for corrections to almanac.

I am sure you will be OK, good luck.
 
S

Skyva_2

Guest
Exactly, just the same as France,- as I said in my first post?
 

dukes4monny

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4 Feb 2008
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963
Thanks for your help. I have just sent you an order for some of your help charts........
 

dukes4monny

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4 Feb 2008
Messages
963
Just wanted to say thanks for the skills charts, super quick delivery and excellent charts too........

I've now pulled out of the YM course, couldn't get my head around (for example) anchoring in the southern peninsula and given a time of 1140 UT, you don't add an hour to adjust to TZ -0100 for the tidal height calcs.
Still, I'm planning to do my DS practical this year so the charts will get a lot of use.
 
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