I agree that there should be fewer exams that cover more licenses, with less repetition of retaking exams on the same material. As it stands now, the USCG draws questions for most exams from the same question pool and there is not all that much difference between the level of difficulty of the exams.
However, I do not think that Master 1600 and Master OSV should require the same high level of knowledge and ability as Master Unlimited.
And going back to your point in an earlier post, which I also agree with, Master 1600 and Master OSV should require more knowledge, ability, and experience, than is now the case for the 2nd Mate to Master 1600 crossover exam.
Mate and Master 500 GT should have vessel size, region, and trade appropriate exams.
Master and Chief Mate 3000 GT should require the standard 3rd Mate exam, plus vessel size appropriate Master and Chief Mate topics. A 2nd Mate Unlimited should be able to crossover to Chief Mate 3000 GT with an exam on the Chief Mate and Master Topics.
It should not be possible for 2nd Mate to crossover to Master 3000 GT without 180 days of seatime as Chief Mate 3000 GT.
Master 3000 GT should come automatically with Chief Mate Unlimited.
3rd Mate Unlimited (it’s an entry level license) should come automatically with Master 3000 GT.
Anyone that holds Master 500 and has a 360 days sailing as Master should be able to examine for Chief Mate 3000. Anyone that holds Master 3000 and has a year of seatime sailing Master should be able to crossover to Chief Mate Unlimited.
There should be no crossover from Master OSV, or Master Fishing, or Master Inland, to Master Unlimited, only a crossover to Chief Mate Unlimited.