Assistance Towing Endorsement (Digital Edition)

Mariners Learning System™ has developed an intuitive learning approach that's direct, clear, and effective. By providing a methodical, well-organized program of professionally produced, on-demand lectures, videos, and companion materials, our students are able to absorb and retain what they have learned.

This edition includes online and on demand access to the following training materials:

One year's access to our award-winning Internet based narrated lecture and interactive learning system. Included with each Mariners Learning System™ course is 24/7 access to our online instructors. In the rare event that an online instructor cannot answer your question, toll free telephone support with one of our Staff Instructors will be provided.

MLS Study Guide

Assistance Towing for the Mariner

Course Overview

This course allows the OUPV and Licensed Master up to 200-Tons to acquire a "Towing Endorsement" that permits them to engage in commercial assistance towing services for hire.

Course Subjects Include:
Towing Safety
Forces in Towing
Towing Equipment and Hazards
Standard Towing Procedures

This course satisfies the examination requirement for the Towing Endorsement. Students who successfully complete the course will be awarded a certificate that will be accepted in lieu of the standard Coast Guard examination!

Sea Service
Other than passing the Mariners Learning System™ Towing Endorsement course there are no additional Licensing requirements to have this Endorsement added to a Captain's License.

License Operating Area
This Endorsement can be issued for "Great Lakes" waters, "Inland" waters or "Near Coastal" waters. (depending on where you gained your experience)

Included with each Mariners Learning System™ course is 24/7 access to our online instructors. Each instructor is a USCG Licensed Master that has gone through a rigorous approval process meeting the standards of the United States Coast Guard to become a certified instructor. They bring a level of knowledge, experience, and professionalism that adds to the total learning process. In the rare event than an online instructor cannot answer your question, toll free telephone support with one of our Staff Instructors will be provided.

License Requirements

The Assistance Towing Endorsement is for those who hold an OUPV or Master License and would like to engage in assisting vessels for a fee. To "commercially assist" other vessels that may be aground, disabled or out of fuel, or experiencing some other malfunction requires an endorsement for Commercial Assistance Towing.

Following the USCG Towing Endorsement course completion you will be given a written examination to demonstrate your knowledge of assistance towing, safety, equipment and procedures. Upon successfully passing your exam, a certificate will be issued that is recognized by the USCG as satisfying the testing requirements.

Test Info

Once the student completes the course quizzes and online Module Exam they make an appointment to take their final proctored exam with Mariners Learning System™. No testing at the Coast Guard Regional Exam Centers. The grading standards are:

Exam Modules

Towing Endorsement

Number of Questions


Minimum Score Required


Number of Questions a student can get wrong and still pass

6 wrong

The student must pass all modules to receive a certification of completion. If a student fails one or more modules, he or she may retest twice more without delay on the failed modules. Those who do not pass an exam module after three attempts must wait a period of three months to retest. The student will be required to complete the entire course prior to being allowed another three attempts at each module. In this case the student must retest and pass all four Exam Modules.

Online Testing System Requirements

You must take the exam on a desktop computer or laptop (not a tablet ex: Chromebook)

You must have a working built-in or external webcam and microphone

Your Internet speed must be at least 2 Mbps download and 2 Mbps upload. Determine your Internet speed by running a test at:

Room/Space preparations:

The lighting in the room must be bright enough so that your face and eyes can be seen throughout the duration of the exam.

Your desk/workspace must be completely cleared of all papers, books, and reference materials. In addition, please clear the entire room (including walls and bookshelves) of any materials that could be considered reference materials. Any suspect items seen during the initial room scan by your proctor will be flagged.

Ensure you adhere to the rules during your exam.

You MUST provide your valid government issued photo ID when requested.

You MUST remain directly in front of your webcam for the duration of the exam.

You MUST NOT have anyone else in the room with you for the duration of your exam.

You MUST NOT interact or communicate with anyone by any means while testing.

You MUST NOT use any other electronic devices (phone, ipod, headphones, MP3 player, another computer, etc.) while taking the exam.

Reference materials (papers, pens, books, study guides, e-mails, website, etc.) MUST NOT be used while testing.

You MUST NOT use any mobile device or have any mobile device within your eyesight during the exam.

You MUST NOT access other websites or applications on the computer while testing.

You MUST NOT intentionally disable internet connection while testing.

*Violation of any these rules will be flagged during your exam by the web proctor, and your exam WILL be marked as a FAIL, you will not be eligible for a refund and WILL be banned from re-taking the exam with Mariners Learning System.