PSO eLearning

Protected Species Observer Training
(U.S. Atlantic & Gulf of Mexico)

Instant Access eLearning Course – Cost £200

Trainer: Alison Gill BSc, MSc

IMPORTANT: To work as a PSO you must first be approved by NOAA Fisheries (also known as NMFS). PSOs are required to have certain qualifications and experience in addition to PSO training. Full details of this can be found on the NOAA Fisheries website at this link.

Protected species observer training course

Book here for the eLearning PSO Course

 eLearning Course – £200

Please click on the above image to register and pay for this course. By registering for this course you agree to Intelligent Ocean’s Privacy Policy which can be downloaded here. On the next page click on the words “Click here to register” and fill in the registration form. Please enter the exact name you want on your course certificate in this registration form. You will then see a page with this course listed. Click on the “Buy” button and this will take you through to a payment page. After payment you will see your purchased course in your course list. Simply click on the title and you can start the course.

Please note that if you have previously purchased another course then you just need to log in with your username and password, click on the catalogue tab and then select this PSO course to purchase.

Important – Please read Terms and Conditions before booking

If you are an employer and wish to sign up your staff for this course, please email us at for registration and invoicing details.


Course Details

Intelligent Ocean has been approved as a suitable trainer by the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) and the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Management (BSEE). This course is required for you to work as a Protected Species Observer in the U.S. Atlantic and the Gulf of Mexico. 

Simply log in, read, learn and complete course assessments at your own pace. Simple design, easy to navigate pages (see example pages below). Assessments can be retaken if you don’t achieve the pass mark first time. Just restudy the course content. You set the pace of your learning.
The course programming is designed to work best on laptop and desktop computers. While you can view this course on mobile phones and tablets, we cannot guarantee that the formatting will work on these devices.

You will have 3 years access to your course with the option to renew after this for a small fee if you wish to keep this as a useful resource for future work. We will be updating course content when amendments to regulations are made and will also add new relevant information. This is not just a course but a tool for your continuing professional development.

The PSO course contents are as follows:
  • Introduction to the biology and sensory world of protected species.
  • Impacts of man-made noise, vessel strike, dredging, explosives, military sonar and fishing gear entanglement on protected species.
  • Discussion on the basis for current legislation in place for the U.S. to protect marine species during industry, research and military operations and the organizations involved.
  • Industry and military operations that have the potential to cause injury or disturbance, outlining the operational procedures of each one.
  • How to source regulatory documentation.
  • Feature section on the plight of North Atlantic right whales and the mitigation to protect this species.
  • An in-depth explanation of mitigation principles and example mitigation measures for a range of project types (geophysical surveys, piling, explosives (introduction to the PROP program) and vessel strike avoidance).
  • In-depth section on dredging operations and the role of the PSO for monitoring and collection of specific data and tissue sampling (aim as a pre-runner course to further specialised training).
  • Protected species survey techniques and range estimation.
  • Information books and Identification sheets.
  • How to gain experience for observation of protected species.
  • Detailed section on protected species identification with photographs and videos.
  • Life onboard vessels or platforms as an PSO – expected conduct of working with industry personnel. 
  • Course assessments with a pass mark of at least 85% required.

Ready to Start Learning?

 Privacy Policy

Intelligent Ocean's privacy policy regarding personal data held in order to provide training services can be downloaded at the link below. By purchasing our training services you agree to this policy.

Intelligent Ocean's Privacy Policy can be downloaded here.

Access to Courses

We will endeavour to allow uninterrupted access to your eLearning material, but access to the courses may be suspended, restricted or terminated at any time. We reserve the right to change, modify, substitute or remove without notice any information in the material from time to time.

You will have access to the courses you have purchased for 12 months from the date of purchase. You will be able to have further access after the 12 months on payment of a renewal fee.


Trainees must be able to speak, read and write fluently in English.

Intellectual Property/Copyright

The copyright in the material contained in the courses, together with the design, text and graphics and all software compilation belong to INTELLIGENT OCEAN LTD. All rights are reserved. None of this material may be reproduced or redistributed without INTELLIGENT OCEAN LTD's written permission. You may, however, download or print a single copy for your own non-commercial viewing.

If you download the course material from our site, all the material and data are deemed to be licensed to you by INTELLIGENT OCEAN LTD, for your personal, non-commercial use only. INTELLIGENT OCEAN LTD does not transfer either the title or the intellectual property rights of the course and INTELLIGENT OCEAN LTD retains full and complete title to the courses as well as all the intellectual property rights therein. You may not sell, redistribute or reproduce or convert any of the material. INTELLIGENT OCEAN LTD owns all trademarks and logos and you may not copy or use them in any manner.

Exclusions of Liability

INTELLIGENT OCEAN LTD will use reasonable endeavours to ensure that the data in the courses is accurate and to correct any errors or omissions as soon as practicable after being notified of them. To the extent permitted by applicable law, we disclaim all warranties and representations (whether express or implied) as to the accuracy of any information contained in the courses. We do not guarantee that the material will be fault free and do not accept liability for any errors or omissions.

We do not give any warranty that the website is free from viruses or anything else, which may have a harmful effect on any technology. INTELLIGENT OCEAN LTD makes no representation whatsoever regarding the content of any other websites, which you may access from the courses. A link to a non-INTELLIGENT OCEAN LTD website does not mean that INTELLIGENT OCEAN LTD endorses or accepts any responsibility for the content or use of such websites.


Once you have booked onto an eLearning course you have up to 14 days from the purchase date to cancel your booking and receive a full refund provided that the eLearning has not been accessed. After the 14 days, or if the eLearning has been accessed you will not be entitled to any refund, nor will you be able to transfer your eLearning to another person or onto another eLearning course.


You should register for online purchasing after clicking the 'buy now' link. You will use your email address and password to gain access to your courses.

Your login details are the methods used by us to identify you and so are very important. Any information regarding someone using your password details should be advised to the INTELLIGENT OCEAN LTD office immediately.

PAM ELearning Course

For PAM training each trainee will be required to use a PC computer. Please note that MAC computers tablets and mobile phones are not  suitable for the PAM course. The course material and practical exercises will assume that you have a PC and the commands will be written for PCs using windows.

Certificates and Registration (if applicable)

On completion of a course, a certificate will be issued. If the course is an accredited course the trainee's contact details will be sent to the accrediting body (if applicable) to register that they have completed the training as this is required for their databases.  Trainee details will not be used for any other purpose.

Identity and Misuse

INTELLIGENT OCEAN LTD holds no responsibility for misuse of identity when registering for our eLearning courses. The name given on registration will be the name on the certificate of completion and it is assumed that the person, whose identity this is, has completed the training course.  Any employer who purchases these courses for their staff will hold the responsibility for ensuring that there is no breach of identity.

Satisfactory Completion of Course

Modifications to Terms and Conditions

We may modify these terms and conditions at any time by publishing the modified terms and conditions on the website.

Updates by Regulators

INTELLIGENT OCEAN LTD cannot be held responsible for any government regulator upgrading training requirements in the future which will result in personnel having to attend further training to upgrade their current certificate.