Yeah, that's my understanding as well. I know some courses have a digital representation of gmdss equipment that they use instead of having the physical equipment.
It would be nice if someone could get this done on an online platform. I'd bet it would be wildly popular and be able to sell a ton of classes! It would save a lot of traveling, hotel costs, travel costs, food costs, etc while going to a conventional class.
I've taken a couple online classes that are approved by the uscg and I really appreciated it. If I had any issues, I was able to contact someone at the school who could talk me through it.
Imagine not having to take your valuable home time off to take some of the redundant courses or courses that you really don't need someone talking you through it (BRM or leadership). Just take them on your downtime on the vessel...
I'll keep dreaming.