Why Does Grading Take So Long?

Certified Cicerone® exam scores can be expected to be reported, by email, four to six weeks from your exam date.
Once you leave the exam location, your exams are sent back to Cicerone HQ in Chicago. Your demonstration videos are then uploaded. Once the exams arrive in Chicago, our staff breaks them out and scans each page. Typically these two steps can take up to 10 days.
Our staff then takes the scanned and uploaded exam files and sends them to six to eight different graders. This ensures that no single individual has undue influence on the overall exam score. Graders include Certified, Advanced, and Master Cicerones who have demonstrated extensive knowledge in the areas they grade through their scores on past exams, in addition to professional experience. Since our graders are working beer professionals, and we try to be courteous of their time by giving them 10 days to grade and return a set of exams.
Once the scores have been returned to us, we then work to tabulate the section and final scores for each individual candidate. Any exam with an overall score of 78 or 79 is reviewed in full by our staff. Several sections are graded by two people, and we monitor for disparities between graders’ scores. If we see any discrepancies, a staff member reviews the candidate’s answers to assess what score should be awarded. This final quality control process takes an average of 10-14 days.
We understand that the wait can be difficult, and strive to report our exams as quickly as possible.

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