WSET® Level 4 Diploma in Wines and Spirits

The WSET® Level 4 Diploma in Wines and Spirits

Who should attend?

This course is suitable for those working in the trade wishing to progress to roles such as food and beverage management, working as a member of a marketing team responsible for product ranges, a wine buyer, sales executive or other professional role in the wine and spirit industry. This qualification is also suitable for the dedicated wine spirit industry. This qualification is also suitable for the dedicated wine enthusiast wishing to build on knowledge gained at Advanced Level.

Please note, the WSET® Level 3 Award in Wines and Spirits is an entry requirement for this level.

How will you benefit?

This is WSET’s flagship qualification, designed to prepare people for senior positions within the wine and spirit business. The course will not only develop product knowledge to a specialist level, but will enable students to acquire skills that will continue to be of use beyond the course. The course is taught by industry experts, many are Masters of Wine, all have up-to-date knowledge of contemporary issues related to wines and spirits.

Outline programme

The Diploma qualification is broken down into six mandatory units:

  • Unit 1 The Global Business of Alcoholic Beverages
  • Unit 2 Wine Production
  • Unit 3 Light Wines of the World
  • Unit 4 Spirits of the World
  • Unit 5 Sparkling Wines of the World
  • Unit 6 Liqueur (Fortified) Wines of the World

The Diploma course is a blend of taught time, assessment and self-study and requires substantial commitment outside the classroom.

Unit Assessment

In keeping with best modern educational practice, the Diploma is assessed using a variety of different methods. These are:

  • Closed book tasting assessments
  • Multiple Choice examination format
  • Closed book examination
  • Course work assignments
  • Evidence of prior learning through the production of portfolios of tasting notes

*N.B. not currently offered by l’école du vin Sàrl (Exclusivity WSET® London), but are planning to do so in the future.

Required prior knowledge: – WSET® Level 3 Award in Wines or equivalent 

(N.B. if you are not sure, contact us, so that we can help you choose the course level according to your needs and objectives).

Learning hours: – Learning hours are an estimate of the time that might be needed for teaching, instruction or other directed activities, plus time that candidates are expected to work on assignments, research or other structured activities, to cover the requirements of the qualification.

Each unit will be allocated learning hours expressed as units of credit; a credit unit is equivalent to 10 learning hours. The learning hours indicate the minimum amount of time a candidate will need to allocate to the study of the Diploma programme

The taught hours for the programme are at the discretion of the Approved Programme Provider. However, it is recommended that a taught programme should be no less than 118 hours

Learning Outcomes – at the end of this course, the candidate will be capable of:

  • demonstrate in-depth understanding of the factors affecting the production of wines and spirits and how these factors influence style, quality and commercial value in a variety of market sectors
  • display an understanding of the trade and legal structures of the identified wine-and spirit-producing regions
  • demonstrate specialist product knowledge of wines and spirits and apply that knowledge to make commercial decisions
  • through the use of the Level 4 WSET® Systematic Approach to Tasting Technique, identify the style, quality and commercial value of wines and spirits
  • produce accurate tasting notes for a range of wines and spirits
  • understand the commercial and economic importance of wines and spirits to global and local markets
  • demonstrate an ability to make informed decisions based on in-depth understanding of the global business of alcoholic beverages
  • present information in a format that meets business requirements

Progression routes:– The WSET® Level 4 Diploma in Wines and Spirits is a specialist qualification where detailed knowledge is combined with commercial factors and a thorough system for the professional evaluation of wine and spirits. The Diploma is recommended by the Institute of Masters of Wine for candidates wishing to pursue membership. (Other qualification routes are also possible)