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SCA Certificate – The dream destination of coffee industry enthusiasts


SCA certificate is likened to a visa card in the world of professional coffee. As a glorious milestone, a success in a proud career that so many coffee makers have always dreamed of. So why is the SCA Coffee Skills Certificate so valuable? How to get SCA certificate? Let’s find the answer with 43 Factory.

Why SCA Coffee Certification is Important for Industry Insiders


SCA Certificate status in the professional coffee world


The SCA Coffee Diploma is specific to the Coffee Skills Program (CPS) and is awarded to students who achieve 100 points or more in CPS courses. This program is researched, built and controlled based on the accumulation of knowledge and experience of thousands of coffee experts from production to baristas around the world. Different from other types of qualifications, SCA skills certificates are globally recognized and internationally valid.


Red carpet factors on career journey


SCA certificate holders are known as prestigious, comprehensive and scientific coffee experts in terms of superior knowledge, skills, and attitudes. 43. If you have an SCA certificate in in-depth skills such as roasting, sensory, brewing,… You absolutely have the opportunity to work at the world’s leading coffee companies with unexpected remuneration and promotion. Even if you excel at becoming an Authorised SCA trainer (AST), you’ll have the power to train, test and certify SCA, build and grow your personal brand to the next level. Your coffee career path will turn to a path filled with glorious red carpets, proud of its global reach.

Chứng chỉ SCA


Training modules of SCA certification


The SCA certification programs include an introductory course and five intensive coffee modules:


1. Introduction to Coffee


Introduction to coffee is a basic, coffee overview course. This module provides the most general view of the coffee world as a commercial product and sustainable value chain. Students will have access to knowledge about botany, variables affecting grain quality, freshness, production principles, roasting, extraction, the importance of water quality, cleanliness and an industry-specific process for evaluating coffee through sensory experience. This is a course that lasts only four hours but is ideal for those who are just starting to get acquainted with specialty coffee. Only theoretical, you can study online and get an SCA certificate in this introductory module right after passing the email test.


2. Barista Skills


Barista skills module trains the necessary skills and competencies on how to use a coffee machine for bartenders from basic to intensive depending on each level. Everything from how to set up the machine, how to make milk, latte art to management and customer care. Achieving a professional SCA certificate of Barista skill, you also have the ability to calculate TDS, dispensing science and use it to create the perfect brewing process.


3. Green Coffee


The green coffee course will give students a complete view of the world of coffee and agriculture to improve their skills in evaluating, trading and processing green coffee. The content that the SCA Green Coffee Certificate teaches about plant varieties, agricultural science, planting, harvesting, processing, classification by altitude, storage, transportation … Besides, students also learn about markets, transactions, incoterms, decaffeination and both organic science and fair trade.


4. Sensory Skills


Sensory skills involve the sensory science of how to recognize, analyze, and measure when using the five senses of coffee. It also covers user experience design, business applications, and more. Students will have the opportunity to practice tasting a variety of coffees to gain knowledge and experience.


5. Roasting Skills


The roasting skills module covers the content of the cycle, the degree of roasting, methods and techniques for identifying defects, grain changes and how to control the roasting process. This SCA certification is also important because practitioners will have a good understanding of the stages of roasting, how they affect taste, and the selection of seeds suitable for any roasting method will involve the acquired sensory profile.


6. Brewing Skills


This is an in-depth course on non-espresso-based extraction methods. Brewing Skill involves TDS, extraction, and the use of tools and techniques (V60, Chemex, Siphon, Clever, up to Ibrik and Aeropress), Besides, the course gives students an understanding of the importance of blending profiles, methods, poha techniques, durability measurements and coffee extraction charts when brewing.


A path to SCA certification and becoming an expert 


To achieve SCA certification, you need to take the above training modules of the CSP coffee skills program. You can choose intensive skills courses that match your development orientation to embrace the SCA certificate.

In addition to each module on intensive skills, there will be exams corresponding to 3 levels from Foundation – Intermediate – Professional. Details of the exam steps for each level are as follows:


Introductory exam steps


The introductory course is foundational theory so the class is held online for about 4 hours.

– Step 1: Before taking the Coffee Introductory Exam, students need to register on the SCA Website to be issued a student identification number

– Step 2: Pay the SCA fee, receive the link via email from SCA to take the test

– Step 3: Students complete a test of about 20 multiple-choice questions in 20 minutes and must have more than 60% correct answers

– Step 4: After successfully passing the test, students will be sent exam results and certificate of completion via email


SCA Foundation exam steps


This is also a basic level of taste, industry first principles for beginners. The platform module participates online and for about a day.  

– Step 1: Before taking the Platform exam, students need to register on the SCA Website to be given a student number

– Step 2: Students will be assessed on their practical skills and complete the coffee making skills report with the instructor

– Step 3: Pay the SCA fee, receive an email link from SCA to complete the same test as the introductory course (score from 60%/100 of about 20 multiple choice questions)

– Step 4: After successfully passing the test, students will be sent exam results and certificate of completion via email


Intermediate and professional exam steps 


Unlike Foundation, these two levels require more practice, suitable for those who already have experience. In which the Intermediate level is studied in about 2 days and about 3 days for the professional level.

A little “note” for you is that you can register for the Intermediate exam if you already have experience or practice, work before and take the Professional exam three months after the Intermediate exam.

– Step 1: Before taking the exam, students continue to register to be issued a student number on the SCA Website

– Step 2: During the course, students will do the practical part. When the results are assessed as qualified, students will pay the SCA fee and complete the theoretical test.

– Step 3: Students need to participate in about 30 questions (Intermediate level) or 40 questions (professional level) and need to make sure to get 70%-80%/100% correct answers depending on the level.

– Step 4: After completing the SCA test, students will be sent an email with the results and a certificate of completion.


Levels and score levels


Each module of intensive skills will have exams corresponding to 3 levels from Foundation – Intermediate – Professional. You can refer to the scale below to get you started on this journey. Collecting over 100 credits, you will receive an SCA certificate:

– Introduction to Coffee 10 credits 

– Coffee Brewing Skills/Sensory Skills/Brewing/Green Coffee/Roasted Coffee 5 credits foundation level 

– Barista Skills/Sensory Skills/Bartending/Coffee Beans/ Roasting Intermediate Level 10 credits 

– Barista Skills/ Sensory Skills/ Bartending/ Green Coffee/ Roasting Professional Level 25 credits


Tuition fees of SCA courses


According to the latest SCA update, from January 2023, the SCA cost is €138 (about 3.5 million VND) of which €100 for fees and €38 for VAT. Costs are used for all levels and subjects including if you are a member of the SCA organization and must ensure they are paid for in advance of the course. Although no one wants to fail, there is good news for those who are afraid of failing the exam, which is that if you fail any modules, this money will be used for another course.

At this point, you will probably find the answer “why SCA certification is so powerful in the global coffee world”. Although it is a “luxury” stepping stone, the journey to reach it as well as the cost is not easy. 43 Factory wishes those who pursue this professional coffee path to become the best version of themselves and successfully assert their position in the international arena.

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