clicked on the "quote" rather than the "edit" icon.

Read the 2nd post to get what I really meant.

Also, I found the course description for the SDI advanced course. This is provided to give you more information on their view of things.

From the SDI website
Advanced Diver Development Program

The SDI Advanced Diver Development Program was created to make truly “Advanced Divers”. Under the old way of training a student could take an Advanced Course right after an Open Water course and only have a total of 9 dives all under the direct training of an instructor. The SDI Advanced Diver Development program requires a new Open Water student to take 4 SDI specialties or equivalent, along with having a total of 25 dives. SDI feels a diver will truly be “Advanced” after this is accomplished.

SDI specialties

Altitude Diver
Boat Diver
Computer Diver
Computer Nitrox Diver
Deep Diver
Diver Propulsion Vehicle
Drift Diver
Dry Suit Diver
Equipment Specialist
Ice Diver
Marine Ecosystems Awareness
Night- Limited Visibility Diver
Research Diver
Search & Recovery Diver
Shore/Beach Diver
Underwater Navigation
Underwater Photography
Underwater Video
Wreck Diver
Visual Inspection Procedures
CPROX Administrator
TDI Nitrox Diver
CPR1st Administrator