Poly-2-aminothiazole (PAT) was electrochemically synthesized on a mild steel (MS) specimen from 0.3 M aqueous ammonium oxalate solution containing 0.01 M 2-aminothiazole (2-AT) using cyclic voltammetry technique. The synthesized polymer film was then modified by electrodeposition of 100 mu g cm(-2) Ni (MS/pAT-Ni) and Zn (MS/pAT-Zn) on top of the polymer surface. The surface morphologies of the polymer films were examined by scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and atomic force microscopy (AFM). The elemental analysis of the surface films was performed by energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDX). The effectiveness of the coatings in preventing corrosion of MS in 3.5% NaCl solution was assessed using electrochemical techniques. It was found that the obtained coatings were adherent to the steel surface. The PAT film provided a good corrosion protection against the attack of corrosive environment. Moreover, the modification of PAT film by deposition of Ni and Zn on top of the polymer surface significantly enhances the corrosion protection performance of the polymer film by exhibiting an improved barrier effect against the attack of corrosive environment. The surface morphologies and protection ability of the layers were found to be dependent on the type of deposited metal. (C) 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.