specialty courses:

Specialty Courses
PADI Specialty Diver courses allow you to experience the underwater world in a new way. Explore shipwrecks, dive deeper, perfect your buoyancy, extend your dive time, and experience unique experiences that only those certified as speciality divers can! On top of it all, you gain confidence in your diving skills and explore the underwater world in new and unique ways! 
AWARE - Fish Identification:

“What was that fish?” is a common question heard after a dive. If you want to be the scuba diver with the answers, instead of the one asking the questions, then take the AWARE – Fish Identification Specialty course. You’ll enjoy your dives even more when you recognize the creatures that you see and can identify the main fish families and their characteristics.

We typically conduct this specialty at Spring Lake in San Marcos or during Trips. Typically completed in a single day or over two days. Must be at least 10 years old, and have (Junior) Open Water Diver or higher. 

Cost: $125.00 

Boat Diver:

Much of the world’s best scuba diving is accessible only by boat. Whether you’ve never made a boat dive or you’ve logged dozens, the PADI Boat Diver Specialty course will benefit you because boats in various parts of the world do things differently. Scuba diving from a boat is fun and relatively easy because you usually descend directly onto your dive site.

This course is conducted in a single day, and is taught on Lake Travis utilizing The Giant Stride. Course Includes boat fee. Must be at least 10 years old, and (Junior) Open Water Diver or higher. 

Cost: $175.00 

Dry Suit Diver:

Want to stay warm? Want to extend your scuba diving season? Then dive dry. A dry suit seals you off from the water and keeps you comfortable, even in surprisingly cold water. There is incredible diving in the world’s cooler regions and in some areas, conditions are even better in colder months. Becoming a dry suit diver allows you to expand your boundaries and dive more places, more often.

This course is taught locally in Lake Travis or Spring Lake in San Marcos. It does not include a Dry Suit, if you would like to purchase one, you get 15% discount when signed up for the course, of you can rent* for $150 dollars per day. This course is typically taught in a single day, or can be added to any core course. Must be at least 10 years old, and (Junior) Open Water Diver or higher. 

Cost: $199.00 

Equipment Specialist:

Don’t miss a dive due to minor issues with your scuba diving equipment. Whether it's a missing o-ring, wetsuit tear or a broken fin strap, the PADI Equipment Specialist course teaches you to manage basic repairs and adjustments. You'll also learn more about how your gear works, making you more comfortable with it and better prepared to take care of your investment.

Typically taught in a single day in store or in addition to any course classes or trips. Must be at least 10 years old and a (Junior) PADI Scuba Diver or higher. 

Cost: $125.00

Emergency Oxygen Provider:

Knowing how and when to use emergency oxygen is a great skill to have and means you’re ready to help others should the need arise. Becoming a PADI Emergency Oxygen Provider lets you breathe easy knowing that you can recognize scuba diving illnesses treatable with emergency oxygen, and are prepared to offer aid.

Typically taught along with Emergency First Responder or Rescue, this course takes a single day. There are no age or training prerequisites for this course. 

Cost: $150.00 

(Also see our Rescue Diver training packages HERE

Project Aware Specialist:

Project AWARE’s philosophy is to mobilize a global force of scuba divers and water enthusiasts who care about protecting the world’s water resources and choose to make a difference – one dive at a time. By earning the Project AWARE Specialist certification, you’ll be aware of the most pressing problems facing vulnerable aquatic environments and know what everyday actions you can take to help protect them.

This course does not have an age or training prerequisite. Can be completed in a single day. 

Cost: $99.00


Diver Propulsion Vehicle:

DPVs offer a thrilling way for scuba divers to see a lot of underwater territory in a short amount of time. They scoot you through the water allowing you to glide over reefs, buzz around a large wreck or weave through a kelp forest. Whether making a shore or boat dive, a DPV is a great way to see more and have fun doing it.

This course can be done in a single day, and is typically taught locally. Must be at least 12 years old, and (Junior) Open Water Diver or higher. 

Cost: $150.00 

Underwater Navigator:

Be the scuba diver everyone wants to follow because you know where you are and where you’re going. The PADI Underwater Navigator course fine-tunes your observation skills and teaches you to more accurately use your compass underwater. If you like challenges with big rewards, take this course and have fun finding your way.

This course can be conducted over a single day or two. We can do this course locally, or during a Trip. Must be at least 10 years old, an (Junior) Open Water Diver. 

Cost: $150.00 

Underwater Naturalist:

Take the PADI Underwater Naturalist Specialty course and you’ll see new things, even on the most familiar scuba diving sites. Why? Because when know more about symbioses, underwater ecology, and aquatic plant and animal habitats, you notice behaviors and see creatures you may have previously missed. Learn more about the local ecosystem and take a closer look on your next scuba diving adventure. 

This course is conducted over a single day, and typically taught locally at Spring Lake  in San Marcos or during a Trip. Must be at least 10 years old, and (Junior) Open Water Diver. 

Cost: $125.00 


most popular

We are thrilled to offer so many PADI core specialties at Dive World Austin. Our specialties can be broken into Diving (at least one open water dive is required for completion) and Non-Diving (no dives are required for completion).  Each course listed below will have that distinction in the description.  All of our specialties will have the same included and not included items listed below.  Some of our specialties like (Enriched Air - Nitrox) are regularly scheduled on our calendar, while others arrive as specialties of the month or single courses on the calendar. If you see a course that you would like to take, but it doesn't appear to be on the calendar, give us a call at (512) 219-1220 and we can organize a course for you! 


  • Training Materials (e-learning or manual)

  • Rental DVD 

  • Tanks (or Air Fills) 

  • Weights 

  • Instruction & Pool Fees 

Not Included: 

  • Entrance fee to Open Water Dive locations

  • BCD, Regulator, Dive Computer, Wetsuit, Hood, Gloves, or Underwater Photography camera/Kraken Smart Housing. These items are available for rental at 50% cost in store though. 

  • Mask, Snorkel, Fins, Dive Booties, Lights, or other unique equipment necessary for dive completion. These items are not available for rental, however, a 10% student discount is available for any necessary gear purchases. 





Peak Performance Buoyancy:

Excellent buoyancy control is what defines skilled scuba divers. You’ve seen them underwater. They glide effortlessly, use less air and ascend, descend or hover almost as if by thought. They more easily observe aquatic life without disturbing their surroundings. You can achieve this, too. The PADI Peak Performance Buoyancy Specialty course improves the buoyancy skills you learned as a new diver and elevates them to the next level. We especially encourage this course after purchasing your own equipment! There isn't a better class out there for learning how to trim yourself out in your new gear. 

This Course can be completed in single day, or over a weekend. We like to utilize Spring Lake in San Marcos, or enjoy a nice Dive and Drive to Athens Scuba park for this course. Cruched for time? That is okay! We can do this class at Lake Travis as well. 

Must be at least 10 years old, and have (Junior) Open Water Diver or higher. 

Cost: $ 125.00 





Digital Underwater Photographer:

Underwater photography is one of the most popular diving specialties, and with so many underwater cameras to choose from, it has become easier and more fun than ever to capture images of your underwater scuba adventures. The PADI Digital Underwater Photographer course gets you going quickly, whether you use a point-and-shoot camera or a sophisticated dSLR like the pros.

We teach this course over 3 days, traditionally a Friday evening, Saturday Dives at Spring Lake in San Marcos, and a Sunday review of photos. We do have cameras/smart housings available for rental if needed. 

Must be at least 10 years old, and have (Junior) Open Water Diver or higher. 

Cost: $200.00 





Wreck Diver:

Whether purpose-sunk as an artificial reef for scuba divers, or lost as the result of an accident, wrecks are fascinating windows to the past. Ships, airplanes and even cars are fascinating to explore and usually teem with aquatic life. Each wreck dive offers a chance for discovery, potentially unlocking a mystery or spying something others have missed. The PADI Wreck Diver Specialty course is popular because it offers rewarding adventures while observing responsible wreck diving practices.

This course is conducted over two days, typically we teach this course with a Dive and Drive to Athen's Scuba Park or at Lake Travis. 

Must be at least 15 years old and be at least an Adventure Diver or higher. 

Cost: $250.00 





Night Diver:

The thought of dipping below the surface at night seems mysterious, yet so alluring. Although you’ve been scuba diving at a site many times before, at night you drop into a whole new world and watch it come to life under the glow of your dive light. The scene changes as day creatures retire and nocturnal organisms emerge. If you’ve wondered what happens underwater after the sun goes down, sign up for the PADI Night Diver Specialty course.

Typically conducted either a single night or over two evenings. We try to organize this course locally (Lake Travis or Spring Lake) But will sometimes also include it as an add on during Travel or Dive and Drives.  

Must be at least 12 years old, and (Junior) Open Water Diver or higher. 

Cost: $200.00 





Deep Diver:

The lure of the deep. There’s something exciting and mysterious about exploring deeper dive sites while scuba diving. Sometimes it’s a wreck that attracts you below 18 metres/60 feet, and on wall dives it may be a giant fan or sponge. Whatever it is, to scuba dive with confidence at depths down to 40 metres/130 feet, you should take the PADI Deep Diver Specialty course.

We conduct this course over two days, and can only offer this course at Lake Travis or during a trip. Must be at least 15 years old, and Adventure Diver or higher. 

Cost: $200.00 





Search and Recovery Diver:

It happens: People accidentally drop things from docks, off boats or even while scuba diving. If you’ve ever lost something in Lake Travis and wanted to go find it, then the PADI Search and Recovery Diver Specialty course is for you. There are effective ways to search for objects underwater that increase your chances of success. And there are good and better methods to bring up small, large or just awkward items. Search and recovery can be challenging, but a whole lot of fun. Find your next pair of sunglasses on your dive!


This specialty is conducted over two days, and typically taught locally at Lake Travis. Must be at least 12 years old, and (Junior) Advanced Open Water Diver or higher. 


Cost: $200.00 


Sidemount Diver: 

Having scuba tanks on your back isn’t a requirement for exploring the underwater world. Many scuba divers have discovered the joy of mounting cylinders on their sides. Sidemount diving gives you flexibility and streamlining options. Plus, you don’t have to walk with heavy cylinders on your back – just enter the water, clip them on and go. Sound interesting? Sign up for the PADI Sidemount Diver Specialty course.


If you’re a PADI Open Water Diver who is at least 15 years old, you can enroll in a PADI Sidemount Diver course.

This course does NOT include any sidemount equipment. Gear packages are available for purchase at this time, but not for RENTAL. 


Cost: $300



Self-Reliant Diver: 

Although most scuba dives are made with a buddy, an experienced diver may want or need to make dives without a partner. During the Self-Reliant Diver course, you learn about potential risks of diving alone and the value of equipment redundancy and necessary back-up gear. During three scuba dives, you develop skills for self-reliance and independence, while becoming a stronger partner in a dive pair or team.

This course is open to divers who are:

At least 18 years old.
Certified as PADI Advanced Open Water Diver or equivalent.
Have a minimum of 100 logged dives
Able to either answer NO to all questions on the standard Medical History Form or secure a physician’s approval prior to the start of class.
Highly recommended certified as PADI Rescue Diver or equivalent.


Cost: $200


Download your Medical Form here. (Click the PDF!) 

If you have a yes on your medical release form, your physician will need to sign the permission form prior to starting class. You MUST bring this form filled out to attend class.

Download the talent release here. (Click the PDF!)

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