When Capt. Murphy was teaching license prep at MMA, he told us to bring the Rules book with us every time we went to the head.
Many mariners do their best work whilst sitting on the head.
For testing purposes (NOT real life purposes) - Step 1 - Read the Rules. Read them again. Read them while trying to memorize them. Write them out to see how far you’ve gone in memorizing them. Read them again. Try writing them out again. Repeat until desired effect is achieved. Step 2 One month before you take the exam, get the Murphy’s books, take Rules questions book - go through that book EVERY DAY at the end of the day and ONLY read the correct answers (high light them before you start)- you’ll be able to answer the questions before you even read them all the way through. Do not use any computer based test prep for this - go straight for the hard copies.
For actual, real world understanding - See step 1 above. Read Farwell’s Rules of the Nautical Road cover to cover. Yes, it’s dry just do it. Get experience through simulators, and pay attention and haul the Rules out during watches - teach/quiz your ABs. Repeat as necessary.
Doing it wrong.
- Join the Navy
- Work on bridge and become OOD
Baby steps. You cannot really understand and apply the rules if you don’t ‘know’ them.
The idea is that you retain the knowledge better if you write them out yourself. That’s a fairly common, and good, education technique.
On a Drill ship I was Captain on we printed up the basic Safety Instruction, Alarm signals and Rules in English and Thai, laminated them attached them on the inside of every toilet doors throughout the ship.
“Sure as sh*t” they would be read, at least by most.
Not my idea. I saw it first on a Maersk Rig in Australia. (Idea hereby passed on, free of charge)
if you read it you forget it, if you try it you learn it.
Try some simulator like “cinematic radar simulator” it is done for COLREG Rule 19 with 30 drils and a level editor for make your own challenge.
Also you can try Parallel Index excersice.
In which case the plaintiff’s attorneys will provide a detailed explanation of why it was done wrong.
There are many different ways of learning the rules. The replies on this thread have some really good suggestions.
We have written an article that covers some of the first few steps that you should take, as well as some extra methods for different types of learners. Hope it helps!