Spanish Wine Scholar™

Spanish Wine Scholar™ Study & Certification Program

The Spanish Wine Scholar™ program is the most advanced and comprehensive certification course on the wines of Spain.

The syllabus takes a regional approach and discusses all Spanish wine appellations and the factors that shape their identities. It provides committed students of wine with an unparalleled set of study tools designed to maximize learning and boost knowledge retention.

The program was created by Spanish wine specialist Rick Fisher, DipWSET, SWS, Spanish Programs Director at Wine Scholar Guild.

Foods and Wines from Spain (ICEX - Spain's Trade & Investment Government Agency) has endorsed the program in recognition of its exceptional depth, accuracy, detail, and academic rigor.

Endorsed by 


The Spanish Wine Scholar study and certification program confers a post-nominal to wine professionals and enthusiasts who successfully pass the certification exam (Ex: John Smith, SWS). With a school network encompassing over 30 countries on five continents, the SWS credential has true international recognition.



Earn the Spanish Wine Scholar™ (SWS) post-nominal online via the independent study format or enroll in the instructor-led format with 13 recorded webinars and Monthly Meet-ups with your instructor. 

The Spanish Wine scholar™ distance-learning formats include:


      • A suggested schedule of study with learning objectives for each region
      • 13 on-demand webinars with Rick Fisher, Spanish Programs Director (*instructor-led format only)
      • Live online Monthly Meet-ups with your instructor on various themes pertaining to your SWS studies (*instructor-led format only)
      • The SWS Study Roadmap: A Checklist For Success, providing a suggested schedule of study
      • Online quizzes and learning games for self-evaluation
      • Downloadable maps of all Spanish wine regions designed by Quentin Sadler
      • Pronunciation exercises to boost your credibility
      • A list of recommended wines to sample on your own or in a tasting group hosted by students enrolled in the online program



Start anytime

Price: $750



Next session starts April 20

Price: $950




WSG offers the Spanish Wine Scholar™ program through our Approved Program Providers located in over 30 countries on five continents.

            • Classroom instruction with extensive tutored tastings
            • A copy of the SWS study manual
            • Access to the SWS online study modules & quizzes for class prep & review
            • In-classroom exam sit

All SWS program providers teach from the same Wine Scholar Guild-developed presentations and are supplied with uniform teaching materials. For many, the classroom experience helps to reinforce the theory; a tutored tasting component brings each region to life. In addition, many students find the set schedule helpful in keeping up with their studies.






Modeled after the French Wine Scholar™ program, Spanish Wine Scholar™ students will receive the same complete study materials.


The Spanish Wine Scholar™ manual is the most comprehensive and current coverage of the wines of Spain and follows a regional approach with strong tie-ins to terroir.

Each chapter is designed for maximum content retention and utilizes a systematic approach, allowing the student to compare and contrast each wine region of Spain.

Manuals are current and discuss the most recent trends. They are printed in full color, are rich in imagery, and peppered with the iconic wine labels of each region.

Every Spanish wine appellation is discussed (vs. just mentioned) and triaged by "need-to-know" icons. Emphasis is given to the flavor and structure profiles of the wines.

A Fundamentals Chapter provides an overview that puts all of Spain and its wines into perspective.

#2 SWS Online Study Program:

The SWS online study program offers interactive e-learning modules that are put into a measurable, meaningful format designed for maximum content retention and ease of use.

Each region of Spain is covered and dovetails nicely with the Spanish Wine Scholar™ study manual. Study materials are available online 24/7. If you've got a laptop and an internet connection, you've got a classroom!

Spanish Wine Scholar™ online study modules features: 

  • E-learning modules loaded with videos and learning games to keep you engaged
  • Automatic bookmarks to resume where you left off
  • Quizzes and learning games for self-evaluation
  • Hundreds of online flashcards
  • Pronunciation exercises

#3 Detailed Spanish Wine Maps:

Your study manual is packed with beautiful wine maps, which have been designed for this program by Quentin Sadler. Electronic versions of these maps and blank practice maps are also available for download on the online course page.

#4 Professional Instructor Support:

  • Online Independent Study: via the Q&A forum answered by Rick Fisher, Spanish Programs Director
  • Online Instructor-Led Format: via the Q&A forum plus email and live chat with instructors
  • In Classroom: via a local, certified instructor


The Spanish Wine Scholar™ course is composed of 10 chapters:

            • Chapter One - Fundamentals
            • Chapter Two - Green Spain
            • Chapter Three - The Duero River Valley
            • Chapter Four - La Rioja/DOCa Rioja
            • Chapter Five - The Ebro River Valley
            • Chapter Six - Cataluña
            • Chapter Seven - The Central Mediterranean Coast
            • Chapter Eight - The Meseta
            • Chapter Nine - Andalucía
            • Chapter Ten - The Islands

The detailed curriculum is available here



Individuals who follow this in-depth Spanish wine course and pass the exam earn the Spanish Wine Scholar™ title and SWS post-nominal, which may be incorporated into a professional signature (e.g., John Smith, SWS).

The exam is composed of 100 multiple-choice questions. Candidates need a score of 75% to receive the credential.

Students with a composite score of 85-90 pass with HONORS. Candidates who score 91-100 pass with HIGHEST HONORS.

More information about the exam

Student Testimonials:

  • Fabrizio Gulizia
    on Mar 25, 2023
    "I really enjoyed the Spanish wine course. The book is very informative and also the online material is great. The overall course is very knowledgeable about Spain in general and the wine regions in particular without neglecting the history of Spain and other important features. Moreover Rick and Sascha are great teachers. I am glad I did it."
  • Kevork Kouyoumjian
    on Mar 15, 2023
    "As someone who works in the medical field, and shares a passion for Spanish wine, I truly enjoyed the content of this course. It’s methodical approach for each region, while presenting its history, evolution, and lively webinars by Rick, prompts my interest to pursue other certifications with WSG! Dr. Kevork Kouyoumjian, PharmD "
  • Helene Schwartz
    on Feb 4, 2023
    "The book was well presented. Rick and Sasha's seminars were brilliant, really consistently planned and delivered. This helped tremendously during my final revisions. Thank you for yet another enjoyable course!"
  • Helene Schwartz
    on Feb 4, 2023
    "The book was well presented. Rick and Sasha's seminars were brilliant, really consistently planned and delivered. This helped tremendously during my final revisions. Thank you for yet another enjoyable course!"
  • Helene Schwartz
    on Feb 4, 2023
    "The book was well presented. Rick and Sasha's seminars were brilliant, really consistently planned and delivered. This helped tremendously during my final revisions. Thank you for yet another enjoyable course!"
  • Manuel Gonzales
    on Feb 3, 2023
    "As a long term wine professional, educator, sales person and portfolio manager for a large wholesaler in New England, I love the attention to geologic and human history. The format is user friendly, easy to understand and extremely engaging. "
  • Daisy Mendieta
    on Feb 1, 2023
    "I recommend the Spanish Wine Scholar Program to anyone looking to further their knowledge in Spanish wines. "
  • Nance Donaldson
    on Jan 24, 2023
    "The Spanish Wine Scholar is a full immersion into the history, culture, vineyards and grapes varietals of Spain. I found it to be both challenging and rewarding and look forward to sharing my knowledge with others to promote Spanish wines throughout the Southeast United States in my wine tasting classes. "
  • Antonina
    on Jan 21, 2023
    "The course was great, even though very detailed. I felt a bit confused with the historical part, especially as to what was required for the exam. I very much appreciate the contact with Rick who sorted out any of my doubts via the I- net platform. Thank you very much!"
  • Jeff Campbell
    on Jan 13, 2023
    "The Spanish Wine Scholar course was a great in-depth study of Spanish wine as well as Spanish wine history. The written materials are excellent and the on-line resources that are available really helped with the "need-to-know" aspects of the course. This was the first course I've taken with the Wine Scholar Guild and I look forward to signing up for the next one!"
  • Maxim Salekhov
    on Jan 10, 2023
    "I won the wine scholar 2020 scholarship. The course was an absolute delight. I must have read the book back to front countless times. Made too many flash cards. My walls were covered in the maps with strings going everywhere like a crime investigation. The material was tough at times but it is very interesting and fun. If you are genuinely passionate about wine then I guarantee you will 100% enjoy SWS like I have. Having access to the Moodle, with the various videos, audios, quizzes, etc. is all very beneficial and helps retain the information without burning out since it is a lot to memorise. But yeah, 10/10 I would do it again. Soon hopefully i'll take IWS and FWS too."
    on Dec 20, 2022
    "Great program to deep your knowledge about Spanish wine history, geography, climate, viticulture, winemaking techniques, wine styles, wine law, wine labels and different wine regions with their DOPs and IGPs. Thank you very much Mr. Rick Fisher, all of the SWS team and WSG! "
  • Gloria Lescieur
    on Dec 20, 2022
    "These have been my favorite certifications since 2019 as the flexibility to connect from Mexico online with the instructors has been very valuable. I definitely encourage any sommelier that wants to have specific knowledge of these wine countries, Wine Scholar is the best option!"
  • Jonathan Emery
    on Nov 22, 2022
    "I have thoroughly enjoyed the Spanish Wine Scholar program. The instruction and study materials were excellent. I had a lot of fun and now feel like I have a much greater understanding of Spain, It's wines and why they are so unique."
  • Agustin G Corbella
    on Nov 20, 2022
    "I loved the experience from start to finish. As the son of a Spaniard and wine shop owner/sommelier, I wanted to obtain this certification partly as a way to grow closer to my family heritage - and I think we succeeded! Thank you, Rick, for being such a great teacher and for making this such a rewarding experience. "


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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