Q. When can I start a Westlawn
A. All our courses may be started at any time
during the year. There are no specific start times. Westlawn
sends you your student ID, email address (email@example.com), and
instructional material within a few days after the enrollment form and tuition
payment are received.
Q. Is Westlawn
recognized in the yacht and small-craft design profession?
A. Yes. Westlawn
had a many-decades-long affiliation with the two leading marine industry groups
in the USA: the National Marine Manufacturers
Association (NMMA), represents approximately 1,400 boat manufacturers and
others industry leaders (accounting for 80% of all boating related products in
the U.S.); the American Boat & Yacht
Council (ABYC), which for over 50 years has been the primary source for
boating safety standards in the U.S. In addition, the Royal Institution of Naval Architects (RINA)
recognizes Westlawn graduates for full membership.
Q. Is computer-aided design (CAD) used in the
Yacht & Boat Design course?
A. Yes. In fact, although acquiring good basic
manual drafting skills is required, Westlawn also
requires that all students in the full Yacht & Boat Design course
become proficient in CAD. Westlawn has developed a
unique system to enable students with widely different backgrounds in CAD to
master the programs required to graduate.
Q. Does Westlawn
provide job placement assistance?
history and unique relationship with the National Marine Manufacturers
Association (NMMA) and the American Boat and Yacht Council (ABYC) makes Westlawn a primary source for companies seeking technically
trained professionals for their design departments. Employers throughout the
marine industry recognize the value of a Westlawn
education, and Westlawn graduates have been
responsible for a significant number of new designs introduced worldwide.
Please note that Westlawn does not guarantee
employment, nor does the school provide a formal placement service. For
advanced students, Westlawn does provide information
on job opportunities as they become available, but it is the student and
potential employer themselves who come to any agreements.
Q. What are the costs of the Westlawn Yacht & Boat Design course?
A. Each of the four modules of the Yacht
& Boat Design course cost $4,400 for tuition and books. You pay this
amount to start each of the four modules. In addition, students pay $100 per
month for access to the online student infrastructure. The online student
infrastructure includes an email account (firstname.lastname@example.org), unlimited
email and cloud storage, and access to the student forum and the ability to
upload your work to the instructors. So the full 4 module course is $17,600 in
tuition and books, and $100 per month for as long as it takes you to graduate.
Of course you may drop out at any time, you may take as little or as long to
complete the course as you like. If you complete in 4 years (a typical
schedule), then the total amount for tuition, books, and monthly fees is
Q. What are the costs of the Westlawn Overview of Naval Architecture for Marine
A. The Overview of Naval Architecture for
Marine Professionals course costs $4,400 for tuition and books. You pay
this amount to start the course. In addition, students pay $100 per month for
access to the online student infrastructure. The online student infrastructure
includes an email account (email@example.com), unlimited email and cloud
storage, and access to the student forum and the ability to upload your work to
the instructors. So the Overview course is $4,400 in tuition and books,
and $100 per month for as long as it takes you to graduate. Of course you may
drop out at any time, you may take as little or as long to complete the course
as you like. If you complete in 6 months (a typical schedule), then the total amount
for tuition, books, and monthly fees is $5,000.
Q. What is the maximum allowable time to
complete a course of study?
Each module requires six to twelve months studying full time; however, students
studying on a part-time basis may require more time. For this reason, students
are charged a $100 per month fee for access to the online student
infrastructure. The students can then take as long as they need to complete a
Q. What are the school’s hours of operation and
when is it closed? When are faculty available to answer questions?
Students may ask questions of instructors using the student on-line forum and
email at any time. Usually, answers are provided within hours. Students may
also call instructors during normal business hours. Our instructors are on the
US Eastern Seaboard, and in Brisbane Australia. Note that all our instructors
are also active in the marine industry, and so from time to time may be
temporarily unavailable. For example, Eric Holohan
was recently on travel throughout Asia to oversee boats under construction.
Also, faculty may be engaged in giving presentations and seminars at other
schools, at conferences, and at boat shows, and these duties may temporarily
delay responses to questions.
Q. How long does it take to complete Yacht
& Boat Design?
A. Working on a part-time basis, devoting
approximately fifteen hours a week to study and lesson preparation, you should
be able to graduate from the full four-module Yacht & Boat Design
program in four years. Full time students, working about 30 hours a week,
should be able to complete the course and graduate in about two years.
Q. How long does it take to complete Overview
of Naval Architecture for Marine Professionals?
A. Full-time students should be able to
complete the Overview of Naval Architecture for Marine Professionals
course in about 6 months. On a part time basis, plan on a year of study.
Because students work at their own pace, some will be able to graduate in less
time; others will require more time.
Q. Does Westlawn
grant a degree?
A. Westlawn grants
a professional diploma to all graduates of the four-module Yacht & Boat
Design course. A certificate of completion is awarded to graduates of the Overview
of Naval Architecture for Marine Professionals course. Degrees are not
awarded, as the course concentration is specific to yacht and small-craft
design and does not include courses in the humanities, arts, or general
Q. Are college credits given for Yacht &
Boat Design if I transfer to a degree-granting college?
A. This should be discussed with the college
to which you transfer. In the past, credit has been given for the Yacht
& Boat Design course, but each case is evaluated on an individual
Q. If I take Overview of Naval
Architecture for Marine Professionals and complete the course, can I
transfer into the full Yacht & Boat Design course?
A. Yes. Students who transfer are required to
complete those lessons of the Yacht & Boat Design course that
weren’t part of Overview course. All work done in Overview is
transferred to the full course. Students transferring from Overview
receive a discount of $2,400 on their Module 1 tuition to reflect the
coursework from Overview.
Q. May I contact Westlawn
if there is something I do not understand?
A. Yes! Students are encouraged to discuss
with an instructor any course-related issue. The best way to ask a question is
via the Student Forum. Each lesson in each course has a specific topic in the
Student Forum. By first perusing the student forums, you may find the question
has already been asked by another and already answered. If not, go ahead and
ask. The ensuing discussion may be illuminating for you and other students. You
may also use email, or call or even fax your questions, but the Student Forum
is a much better mechanism. As we all know, email may be lost due to spam
filters. When asking a question via any of these options, please allow several
hours for a response, as your instructor may be in an unusual time zone.
Remember that all Westlawn instructors are practicing
professional Naval Architects, and they generally have clients and boats under
Q. Is a Westlawn
graduate a yacht or small-craft designer or a naval architect?
A. In many states you would be known as
either. Some states have laws requiring that you have a professional
engineering license to be called a naval architect. As Westlawn
graduates usually are employed within the boating or small-craft industry, they
are known as yacht designers, boat designers, or small-craft designers. While
naval architect generally implies large vessels, yacht designer or small-craft
designer is more appropriate in describing the usual work of the Westlawn graduate. (Small craft are vessels under 200 feet
or 60 meters).
Q. Are there additional expenses beyond
A. Yes. Each student pays a fee of $100 per
month for the online student infrastucture for as
long as they study. Also, a student needs a computer and internet connectivity.
CAD software is highly discounted for our students, so the total cost of
software is about $400 for Rhino + Orca, with AutoCAD being free while a
student. Drafting material is also needed, which tends to cost around $400 in
Q. Do I need access to the Internet to study
A. Yes. You need a computer, email, and
access to the Internet to: log onto the student forum, keep up to date with
course upgrades and event announcements, send in lessons via the Internet, and
to exchange ideas with other students.