THE FRENCH WINE SCHOLAR™ PROGRAM IS THE INDUSTRY'S MOST RESPECTED CERTIFICATION COURSE ON THE WINES OF FRANCE.
Earn the French Wine Scholar™ (FWS) post-nominal through 10 weeks of self-study fully supported by a comprehensive study manual, interactive e-learning modules for each region, and 10 live review webinars.
This format provides the convenience and flexibility of an online study program with interactive live “classroom” instruction delivered to a global student network via computer or tablet.
10-week instructor-led format
Next session starts September 22, 2022
- A comprehensive 330-page study manual with illustrations, maps, and graphics, available in print + e-book formats
- 1-year access to our interactive and user-friendly e-learning platform including online learning modules, pronunciation exercises, quizzes and flashcards
- 10 live review webinars with acclaimed wine educators (webinars are recorded for on-demand replay)
- A suggested schedule of study with learning objectives that provide detailed assessment criteria for mastery
- A list of recommended wines to sample on your own or in a tasting group
- An online exam sit (100 multiple choice questions)
We've just released a brand new version of the French Wine Scholar program (7th edition)! Register today and get your FWS certification in 10 weeks!
Next online instructor-led session starts September 22, 2022. Registration is now open!
Sharon McLean, CS, DipWSET, FWS, IWS
- Certified Sommelier through the International Sommelier Guild Senior
- Authorized instructor of Wine Scholar Guild and WSET courses on Vancouver Island
- WSET Diploma with the highest marks in Canada
- An accredited Bordeaux instructor
Lisa M. Airey, CWE, FWS
- Director of Education for the Wine Scholar Guild since 2009
- 24 years of experience in the wine industry
- Knighted by the French government for the FWS program’s significant contribution to the French wine industry.
- Creator of the French Wine Scholar™ program
- Register now and gain instant access to online study materials including an eBook version of the study manual.
- Your full-color, 330-page French Wine Scholar study manual will arrive by mail shortly afterwards for independent reading and study. Work through the material when you have time in your schedule.
- You are provided access to online study modules and review quizzes corresponding to the course content found in the manual. These are available to you 24/7!
- Attend 10 live webinars for 10 weeks via webinar accessible from computer or tablet (using Zoom). An opportunity to exchange freely with your instructor and fellow students. We always love to hear from you! Can’t make a webinar live? No problem, they are all recorded for on demand replay in webinar or podcast formats…perfect on your way to work!
- Have a question after watching a recorded webinar? Contact your instructors via and Instructor Q & A forum or email her directly. The choice is yours.
- Track your progress through the course curriculum via our online tracking system.
- You have one year from your registration date to take your final exam. The test consists of 100 multiple choice questions. There is no tasting component. All you need is a laptop equipped with microphone and webcam and an internet connection.
- We have structured the curriculum into a three-month program to keep you focused and disciplined in your study. But you have a full year to sit the exam…just in case life gets in the way.
10-week instructor-led format
Next session starts September 22, 2022
It is manageable
The program is designed to keep you on track…but it is also flexible enough to enable you to catch up should your schedule get interrupted…or even to suspend it should you get derailed. It is designed to accommodate the needs of a busy professional.
You have real human support
Sharon and Lisa are available for questions via chat box during webinars, via the Q&A forum and via direct email. There is also a student forum should you wish to create a study group/tasting group in your area or just interact with your fellow students. You can be as interactive or as independent as you want to be.
You are part of a global student community
Your classmates will hail from every segment of the wine industry from all over the globe and offer very different insights and points of view. The intellectual ferment adds to the depth of your learning.
Your classroom is mobile
If you have a computer, cell phone or tablet, you have a classroom.
We offer all the necessary tools & support to master the wines of France!
The 330-page, full-color study manual (NEW 7th Edition) provides all the information from which the test questions are derived. You do not need to research you own study materials; everything you need to know is in the manual.
Comprehensive coverage of France’s 14 distinct wine regions:
- Viticultural history, wine culture and traditions
- Location and climate and their effects on viticulture and wine style
- Topography, geography and soils and their impact on the vine
- Grape varieties and their organoleptic profiles
- Viticulture and winemaking practices
- Wine industry trends and economics
- All AOCs with their regulations, wine styles and specificities
- A Fundamentals Unit covering the history of France, its political geography, physical geography, climate, soils, grapes, training systems, and viticultural & vinicultural practices…plus an important piece on how AOCs are counted and why different sources quote different figures.
- Special focus on current regional trends and challenges
- Pie charts of pertinent AOC production numbers and area under vine by wine region
- Learning objectives that provide detailed assessment criteria for mastery
Regions covered: Alsace, Champagne, Bourgogne, Beaujolais, Jura, Savoie, Loire, Bordeaux, Southwest, Languedoc, Roussillon, Rhône, Provence, Corsica
The FWS online study modules offer interactive presentations that are put into a measurable, meaningful format designed for maximum retention of content and ease of use. Each region of France is covered and dovetails nicely with the French Wine Scholar study manual. Study materials are available 24/7. If you’ve got a laptop and an internet connection, you’ve got a classroom!
French Wine Scholar™ online study modules features:
- Quizzes and learning games for self-evaluation
- Educational graphics, videos and pronunciation exercises to offer new insight and keep you engaged
- Your place is automatically bookmarked/saved to resume where you left off
- A progress bar tracks your accomplishments
10-week instructor-led format
Next session starts September 22, 2022
About the Program
The French Wine Scholar™ education program is the most advanced, comprehensive, and up-to-date French wine course available. The syllabus takes a regional approach and discusses all French wine appellations and the factors that shape their identities.
The program provides committed students of wine with an unparalleled set of study tools that are designed to maximize learning and boost knowledge retention.
The French Wine Scholar study and certification program confers a post-nominal to wine professionals and enthusiasts who successfully pass the certification exam (Ex: John Smith, FWS). With a school network encompassing 30 countries on 5 continents, the FWS credential has true international recognition.
It was created by WSG Education Director, Lisa M. Airey CWE, with the support of the French Ministry of Agriculture which knighted her in recognition of the program's exceptional level of depth, accuracy, detail, and academic rigor as well as its impact on the global wine industry.
- Federica Cazzanigaon Jun 30, 2022"I took the FWS course after passing my WSET 3, in preparation for DipSet. Great content and great insights that gave me a strong understanding of the variety and complexity of France and its wine regions. "
- Martin Feldmanon Jun 29, 2022"I highly recommend the FWS course. As a long time wine lover, I have often been intimdated by French wine. Not any more! The FWS has provided a comprehesive understanding of French wine and terrior. Lisa and Sharon share their incredible knowledge in a fun classroom atmosphere. The manual is a phenomenal reference, and the online learning tools, especially the videos make it all work."
- Nathalie Brienon Jun 17, 2022"Great way to learn about French wines and geography even if you visited the country 20 times! Discover grape varieties you never heard about through videos, live sessions and a great book. I totally recommand this program with WSG."
- Sarah Lewison Apr 20, 2022"The program was excellent with a harmonious balance of historical context, growing environment, winemaking practices, and of course the wines themselves. In particular, I think the FWS has a focus on delivering materials that enhance the student's success in understanding and appreciation of all that the wines of France have to offer."
- David Kammon Apr 13, 2022"The French Wine Scholar program provides an in-depth exploration of every wine region in France. It is an invaluable aid in grasping the nuances of the different regions, their soil, geography and other environmental influences, going far being the grape and viticulture. It is very detailed, however, and not for the faint of heart, but more geared to the serious wine student. Clearly, even without taking the exam, one's knowledge of the French wine regions will be boosted by the course. "
- Szymon Milonason Feb 25, 2022"During studying you almost feel like being there, great motivation to visit french regions"
- Jeff Tyneron Feb 10, 2022"I am a 68 year old cardiothoracic surgeon in San Diego who has no connection with the wine industry. Nonetheless, I find the viniculture, viticulture, history, and personalities fascinating. I took and passed WSET 2 and 3 but knew what i really wanted to understand was more about the French wine history and culture. I have no idea if I passed but no matter, I learned a lot and an am grateful for the experience. The online tutors are terrific and the study materials very accessible and concise. Thanks for a well designed and crafted learning experience. J Tyner"
- Luiz Batistelloon Feb 9, 2022"The program was clear, very didactic and with a good amount of information concerning to the local culture, French expressions, names, sub-areas less explored, making the exam a little bit challenging. I live in France and travel often to the main regions and I have learned also may new things even for Champagne where I spend most of time. I was very satisfied of taking this program. My only suggestion would be maybe to have more short videos in the region's sessions, they could help making a faster revision. In the quiz would be nice too, to have more questions. "
- Libby Lewison Feb 6, 2022"The French Wine Scholar program is formidable and detailed. However, the large variety of study materials, live sessions, and ability to go back to review recordings was very helpful as I prepared for my exam. I enjoyed the program while being challenged. It is the first of what I hope to be many certifications I will pursue with the Wine Scholar Guild."
- on Feb 6, 2022"The French Wine Scholar program is a "master" program, in the fullest and most-noble sense of the word - not only do you learn about French winemaking, the French organizational and regulatory system, the grapes, the key historical figures, geology, world-economic-political-sociological history - but you get to experience some of the very finest mentor-instructors, as well as a great networking experience with your classmates! Very enjoyable experience!"
- John Ferrison Jan 20, 2022"I found the program very enjoyable and enlightening. With my curiosity peaked, I have experienced many wines that i never would have tried. And there are many more I am looking forward to tasting! This course opened my eyes as to just how wonderful the world of French wine really is. Thank you."
- Sunny Gandaraon Dec 14, 2021"I found the French Wine Scholar program to be incredibly very in-depth and comprehensive and challenged me in a positive way that inspired me want to continue studying the individual regions further. Lisa and and Sharon were fantastic instructors, very thorough and quick to respond to any inquiries from students. A very well designed program I highly recommend anyone who is interested in the wine region of France to take!"
- Carol Morrison Oct 15, 2021"I wholeheartedly endorse the French Wine Scholar program! The instructors were extremely knowledgeable, patient and helpful. The material was comprehensive but easy to understand. I learned so much through this program, I can’t say enough about how amazing it is!!"
- Henry Sullivanon Aug 26, 2021"This class is extremely fun and presents you with all necessary information to understand French wine in great depth and detail. Highly recommend!"
- Mandy Shih-Yu Wangon Aug 25, 2021"I would like to thank WSG for such a wonderful program. The French Wine Scholar textbook and the accompanying PowerPoint slides are so helpful for those who would like to explore the French wine regions and further enhance their wine knowledge. Moreover, the webinars led by Lisa and Sharon not only provided students with guidance on how to study the textbook information but also the instructors' insights, which helped students realize the rationale behind the viticulture /viniculture practices and the transformation of certain French wine laws. This is such a valuable course that every wine student and enthusiast must take. Thank WSG for such a wonderful wine journey."