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The International Wine Education Centre (IWEC) was established in 2011 as the first Approved Programme Provider for the internationally-recognised Wine & Spirit Education Trust (WSET) in Africa. WSET is the largest global provider of wines & spirits qualifications and their wine and spirit courses are the accepted industry-standard in more than 70 countries around the world.

Led by WSET International Educator of the Year, Cathy Marston DipWSET, the IWEC offers a full range of WSET wine and spirit courses from the introductory WSET Level 1 to WSET's flagship qualification, WSET Level 4 Diploma Award in Wines:


WSET Level 1 Award in Wines Transparent 30px Block  WSET Level 1 Award in Spirits
WSET Level 1 Award in Wines Online WSET Level 1 Award in Spirits Online
WSET Level 2 Award in Wines WSET Level 2 Award in Spirits
WSET Level 2 Award in Wines Online WSET Level 2 Award in Spirits Online
WSET Level 3 Award in Wines  
WSET Level 3 Award in Wines Online WSET Level 1 Award in Sake Online
WSET Level 4 Diploma Award in Wines  


The IWEC regularly teaches courses throughout South Africa, specialising in Western Cape and Gauteng. Bespoke courses are available anywhere in South Africa and internationally for individual companies or groups of interested wine-lovers. External to South Africa, the IWEC has run courses in Mauritius, Namibia, UAE, Qatar and Maldives and is happy to consider future courses anywhere to meet demands.

What is the course pass mark?
WSET Level 1 - 70
WSET Level 2 - 55%
WSET Level 3 - 55% on both papers.

How are the exams marked?
Every exam is sent by international courier to WSET in London to be marked. This is true for every WSET examination taken throughout the world to ensure continuity of results.

When will I know my results?
WSET Level 1 - up to 3 weeks
WSET Level 2 - up to 3 weeks
WSET Level 3 - up to 10 weeks

What do I receive when I pass?
A certificate with lapel pin and an internationally recognised WSET qualification. Successful WSET students of WSET Level 2 and WSET Level 3 candidates are also permitted to use a specific logo on their stationary. Please contact us for details info@thewinecentre.co.za

When can I resit my exam if I am not successful in passing?
You can retake your exam without having to resit the course. Costs vary depending on the course and please contact us for potential dates.

How much does it cost to retake an exam?
Please contact us for costs as this will vary depending on which course and when you take it.

Can I retake an exam that I have already passed in order to achieve a better mark?
No. WSET do not permit students to retake exams they have already passed.

What if I have a disability or other difficulty that may impact on my exam performance?
If you believe that you have grounds for requesting a reasonable adjustment of exam conditions due to any disability or difficulty which places you at a disadvantage, contact us at least 6 weeks prior to taking the exam so we can liaise with London and try and accommodate your needs.

Are there any discounts or bursaries?
Unfortunately we are not able to offer any discounts, however the International Wine Challenge (IWC) in London does offer bursaries to eligible students to cover part of the WSET Level 3 and WSET Level 4 Diploma costs. Please contact the International Wine Challenge (IWC) with more information found on our website here. Please note we are not involved in the application process in anyway and any questions you have will have to be directed towards the IWC.

Can I pay by installments?
This may be possible depending on each situation. Please contact us for further information.

Anyone wanting to work in wine or hospitality outside SA or who deals with any wine or hospitality business outside SA will find common ground with employers and customers alike through WSET. In addition, successful Level 2 & 3 candidates may use the WSET Approved logo on all correspondence.

Trusted brand
WSET has been offering wine courses for nearly 50 years and is regarded as the world leader in wine and spirits education and qualifications.

The student materials comprise everything you need to pass the exam and use as a reference guide in the future. No need to purchase other expensive wine books.

Suitable for industry professionals and enthusiastic amateurs alike
Although the IWEC’s courses were devised for wine-folk, any wine-lover will gain a huge amount of knowledge and enjoyment from completing one of these courses.

Up to date
Course materials are regularly updated every third year.

Qualified teachers
All IWEC lecturers have either passed the WSET Diploma or are Masters of Wine, or are qualified and experienced winemakers or other industry professionals. Lecturers are always monitored by the IWEC to ensure a consistently-high standard. The IWEC’s Cathy Marston is the current WSET Educator of the Year 2014/2015, chosen from more than 2,000 programme providers around the world.

International wines
The wine courses are primarily focussed on wines around the world with the vast majority of samples coming from outside South Africa.

Teaching methods
The IWEC uses detailed lesson plans and educator accessories such as Powerpoint presentations, slides, tests etc to ensure that students get the most out of the lectures and don’t waste their time.

All WSET exams are set and marked in London, UK. This means that your qualification is unbiased, impartial and on a par with others around the world.

Looking ahead
If you are interested in furthering your wine studies, ultimately ending up as a Master of Wine, then WSET is the direct route for all further studies.

Are WSET qualifications recognised outside of South Africa?
Absolutely! They are currently taught in over 75 countries around the globe and in 19 different languages. They are seen as the market leader in international wine education.

Do I have to start with WSET Level 1?
No. At the IWEC you can start with whichever WSET course you prefer depending on your experience and knowledge of wines, especially international wines. However, in order to attend WSET Level 4 Diploma, application will have to be made to WSET in London if you have not passed WSET Level 3.

Which course should I attend?
Please have a look at our 'Test you wine knowledge' page to help you decide or Contact us for more advice.

What if I do not drink wine?
You are not required to drink or taste wine in WSET Level 1 or 2 although this is an integral element of the courses in order to obtain a greater understanding of the subject. In WSET Level 3 though, there is a Tasting paper where you are required to taste and describe some wine as this is a compulsory element to pass in order to pass the overall exam.

Can I attend if I am under 18 years old?
Yes, you can attend our courses. However, we will require your parents written consent to attend and you will unfortunately not be able to taste any wine with or without your parents consent for legal requirements.

Where are your courses held?
We run courses primarily in Cape Town, the Winelands and Johannesburg but can run bespoke courses almost anywhere there is a demand. This also includes outside of South Africa as we have previously run courses in Namibia, Mauritius, Dubai and Maldives. Please contact us for further details on bespoke courses.

Can I join a course if I live outside of South Africa or not in a major city?
We run WSET Level 1, Level 2 and Level 3 in Wines plus WSET Level 1 and Level 2 in Spirits as online distance learning courses. These are run direct from WSET in London using the same course books and attaining the same qualification as the classroom based courses. However, please note the examinations will need to be taken in person as they cannot be taken online. WSET Level 3 also requires students to attend a tasting session to ensure their palate is calibrated towards the Systematic Approach to Tasting© that WSET use in the Tasting exam.

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