On Tethys teaching is individualized for each of the two or three learning crew. With a one- to-three student teacher ratio and round-the-clock passage watch schedule, learning happens spontaneously, continuously and in a practical, hands on way. Stories and anecdotes from previous trips are used to illustrate details of sailing techniques as well as to familiarize learning crew with the international sailing community. No one likes to fail and on Tethys there is a ‘no failures’ learning atmosphere.

For those who want to earn International Certificates of Competency for bareboat chartering or to document learning skills, use the International Sail and Power Association (ISPA) curriculum and self-paced workbooks. The books are available for home study before coming aboard. Crew complete the workbooks and demonstrate skills as obtained, then get stamped and signed off in their ISPA personal logbook.  There is no written test.

ISPA certification is available on each passage and is completely optional. Some women aboard Tethys have accomplished the first four levels, Competent Crew, Sail Day Skipper, Sail Coastal Navigation and Coastal Skipper Advanced Sail. These meet the requirements for bareboat chartering. Advanced certification including Yachmaster Offshore Sail, Yachtmaster Ocean Celestial Navigation and Yachmaster Ocean is also available on Tethys ocean passages.