Title: THE CURRENT STATUS OF AND FUTURE TRENDS IN NAVIGATION TRAINING AT THE U.S. NAVAL ACADEMY
Author(s): Lieut. F. Richard Whalen
Published in: NAVIGATION, Journal of the Institute of Navigation, Volume 17, Number 4
Pages: 387 - 396
Cite this article: Whalen, Lieut. F. Richard, "THE CURRENT STATUS OF AND FUTURE TRENDS IN NAVIGATION TRAINING AT THE U.S. NAVAL ACADEMY", NAVIGATION, Journal of The Institute of Navigation, Vol. 17, No. 4, Winter 1970-1971, pp. 387-396.
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Abstract: IN THE MODERN NAVY OF TODAY, the rapid pace of technological development and implementation of advanced systems aboard ships has promoted a feeling of diminishing importance in the traditional skills long practiced by the mariner. In the current approach to navigation, the naval officer finds himself surrounded by an array of sophisticated equipment with a myriad of computer data which may foster not only a false sense of security, but also the belief that the classic navigator with his sextant and comparing watch, compass and dividers is no longer vital to the operation and safety of his ship. Yet, it is the man himself, with or without the assistance of electronic systems, who ultimately plays a major role in conducting a safe passage and realizing a successful mission. A the U.S. Naval Academy the primary objective of navigation training is to provide midshipmen with the necessary background and experience to meet the minimum levels of navigational proficiency as established by the Chief of Naval Operations for newly commissioned officers. This paper presents a brief summary of the evolution of the navigation curriculum at the U.S. Naval Academy since 1960 and discusses in detail the content of the present navigation courses including classroom instruction and practical at sea training. In conclusion, some prospects for future changes in curriculum, including enriched courses, advanced navigation courses, the establishment of a navigation major and the implementation of a Fleet-Academy feedback system on graduate performance are considered.