Frank Smulders and Jeni Wilson in Gómez Cruzado
Frank Smulders and Jeni Wilson in Gómez Cruzado

Who we are?

 

The Wine & Spirit Education Trust (WSET and WSET Awards) is an awarding body and registered charity devoted to the development and delivery of qualifications and courses in wines and spirits. Established in 1969 for the UK wine trade, WSET has since grown to become the global industry leader. As an independent, not-for-profit organisation, its four educational products offer impartial and sound learning on which individuals and businesses can build knowledge and expertise. WSET qualifications are available through a network of over 700 Approved Programme Providers (APPs) working in over 70 countries and 19 languages. The WSET courses have become an essential requirement to qualify for the prestigious Master of Wine title.

 

WSET also runs its own flagship school, WSET School London from its headquarters on Bermondsey Street, London. The school offers the full suite of WSET qualifications alongside tasting sessions, career talks and bespoke programmes.

Jeni Wilson
Jeni Wilson

The origins of WSET

 

WSET was founded as charitable trust in 1969 to serve the growing educational needs of the UK wine and spirits industry which, at the time, primarily spanned import, distribution and retail. Funding was provided by The Vintners' Company and WSET took over the education initiatives started by the Wine and Spirit Association of Great Britain.

Its founders represented the cornerstones of the UK wine and spirits trade, and representatives from each of these organisations continue to serve on our Board of Trustees:

 

The Vintners’ Company
The Wine and Spirit Association of Great Britain (WSA)
Institute of Masters of Wine (IMW)
Worshipful Company of Distillers

Frank Smulders
Frank Smulders

The WSET credentials

 

WSET is committed to delivering its qualifications to the highest standard. WSET achieves this through a quality assurance programme where all course providers (Approved Programme Providers) must meet rigorous approval criteria and on-going monitoring requirements.


WSET Awards is recognised as an awarding body by the English regulator for qualifications, examinations and assessments, Ofqual. It also operates a quality management system that complies with ISO 9001:2015, and is a member of the UK’s Federation of Awarding Bodies.


In addition, WSET works closely with the industry to ensure that its qualifications and education products are job-relevant. Many of the industry’s leading brands support our work through our Corporate Patronage Programme.


Social responsibility is a part of all our teaching programmes, therefore WSET is proud to partner with Wine in Moderation – Art de Vivre Programme and DrinkAware.co.uk.

Operations

 

WSET qualifications are developed and administrated by WSET Awards. This team, supported by the rest of the business, oversees the appointment, administration and support of its extensive network of third-party teaching and examination centres around the world (APPs).

Approved Programme Providers

 

WSET® works with an extensive network of course providers who offer our qualifications around the world. These Approved Programme Providers (APPs) range from accredited individuals and companies to colleges, universities and independent training organisations.

All APPs undergo a rigorous approval and monitoring process to ensure they meet the high standards expected, both to teach our qualifications and to administer them in accordance with WSET® policy. This safeguards the quality and integrity of WSET® qualifications.

To achieve APP status a provider will need to demonstrate that can satisfy minimum criteria regarding educator qualifications, staffing, course and examination venues, study materials and compliance with applicable local laws and regulations.

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