About the Exam

About the Exam

Candidates who follow this in-depth curriculum on the wines of Spain and pass the exam, earn the Spanish Wine Scholar® (SWS) post-nominal.

The exam is given in multiple-choice format. There are 100 questions covering all of the wine regions of Spain. Passing score is 75.

Candidates scoring 85-90 pass with HONORS. Candidates scoring 91-100 pass with HIGHEST HONORS.


Preparing for the exam:

In order to prepare properly for the SWS exam, you must read and study the SWS manual carefully. At first, it may seem a daunting body of knowledge to tackle…but we would like to give you a few tips.

What facts are important?

  • Pay close attention to superlatives (biggest, smallest, highest, lowest, newest, oldest, youngest).  Note the facts associated with words such as “first” and “last”.  They make for good exam questions.
  • Learn the Spanish wine terms and their English equivalents.
  • Pay close attention to the passages citing “exceptions to the rule” throughout the text. They also make for good exam questions.
  • Know your soils, geography, mountains and rivers.
  • Know your grapes and their synonyms.
  • Become conversant in Spain’s DOs and the primary grape(s) grown within their confines.
  • Know your history and the key individuals who have figured prominently in the development of wine culture of any given region.
  • Study the specifics of wine production for white, pink, red, sparkling, late-harvest, and fortified wines.
  • Know your sparkling wine label nomenclature (especially as it pertains to Cava) and the terms used to qualify the various styles of Sherry.
  • Study your maps. You need to know where the wine regions and their DOs are located.

Scheduling your exam:

You have one year from your registration date to take your exam (extension possible for a nominal fee). If you are registered for an online exam-sit and ready to take it, you may contact the WSG office  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to schedule it. Online exam candidates must be equipped with a PC or Mac Desktop or laptop computer with working microphone, speakers and webcam and possess a good internet connection. The exam cannot be taken from a tablet, nor a mobile phone or Chromebook.

Don't feel ready? know that you have the possibility to extend your enrollment for another year from HERE



Disclaimer: WSG offers wine study courses that are targeted to both beginners and those more experienced in the wine industry. While WSG has received many accolades, awards, and testimonials, WSG is not an accredited institution or school. WSG does not guarantee or warrant that any employer or school will recognize WSG wine study courses. While WSG knows that it is a well-recognized institution within the multi-national wine community, it cannot guarantee anyone success in their profession or vocation.

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