FOOLPROOF METHOD TO ACE THE WSET LEVEL 3 SHORT-ANSWER QUESTIONS

FOOLPROOF METHOD TO ACE THE WSET LEVEL 3 SHORT-ANSWER QUESTIONS

by Janet Kampen, WSET- Advanced

USE THIS FOOLPROOF METHOD TO ACE THOSE SHORT-ANSWER QUESTIONS

Statistically speaking, if a student fails the WSET Level 3 exam it’s because they failed the theory section, specifically, because they failed the short-answer questions.

How does this happen? Most often it’s because students didn’t answer the question completely, missing valuable points.

The method described below provides an easy-to-follow set of actions to take to ensure this doesn’t happen to you.

READING THE QUESTION

When approaching a short-answer question, ask yourself two questions: “Which concepts do I need to prove that I understand?” and “How do they want me to prove it?”

Asking yourself these questions is critical. Why? Because it’s what the WSET was thinking when they wrote the questions.

WHAT THEY WANT YOU TO PROVE

Pay attention to the nouns. You know what a noun is – a person, place, thing, idea. Find them all and circle them. Why do this? So you know exactly what you need to talk about and ensure you don’t forget something.

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To achieve maximum points, your answer needs to cover each and every noun found in the question, as well as any new ones you use in your explanations. Bear in mind, some concepts are always linked with other concepts. For example, if you’re asked to explain slope, you’ll need to talk about sunlight and aspect. Write these related nouns next to the one circled so that you remember to define them later.

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HOW THEY WANT YOU TO PROVE IT

Once you’ve identified the nouns, how do you prove your understanding of them? You can do this by – you guessed it – finding the verbs. Find them all and underline them.

Here are the most commonly used verbs and what they’re really asking you to do:

DefineTalk about what it is, give a brief definition
DescribeDefine it, then detail how & when it happens
Explain/DiscussDefine it, describe it, then talk about why it is used/needed/desirable
CompareDefine, describe, and explain for two or more concepts while noting how they are the same or differ

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OUTLINING YOUR ANSWER

Do you really need an outline? Yes. How else will you ensure you don’t forget something? Make sure that all the major concepts you circled or wrote are present. Be as concise or thorough as you like with your outline, but try to be ready to write within five minutes of reading the question.

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FINAL POINTS TO KEEP IN MIND

  • Write plainly, with as few words as necessary; you’re not writing a novel
  • Follow your outline
  • Stick to the verb formulas
  • Provide examples
  • Define everything; assume the person scoring your exam doesn’t know any wine-related terms you mention
  • Write neatly
  • Proofread

Now that you have a plan of attack, practice this method until it becomes second nature. The more you practice, the less daunting short-answer questions will seem. Soon you’ll find that what was once the hardest section for most won’t be for you. See below for a sample short answer that should receive maximum points.

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IN-PERSON COURSE & WORKSHOP REFUNDS & TRANSFERS

Cancellations of confirmed in-person course enrollments and workshops are accepted up to 60 days before the start of the course. An administration fee of $50 plus the full cost of the study materials and exam fees will be deducted, and the remainder of the course fee refunded to the payee. Separate WSET exam cancellation/transfer rules apply.
Transfers of a confirmed enrollment to another course are accepted 60 days before the course start date with an administration fee of $50.

Cancellations less than 60 days before the in-person course start date or course no shows forfeit any refund/transfer options unless students can provide medical documentation. If medical documentation is provided, students can be transferred to a later course. No refunds will be applied.

Course Transfers cannot be carried forward to the next academic year (which commenced on January 1).

Students are highly encouraged to purchase separate travel insurance.

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Flamingo Hotel Las Vegas

Your WSET Level 3 exam will take place on

February 12, 2023 at 10:00 AM (Pacific)

at

3555 Las Vegas Blvd

Las Vegas, NV 89109

 

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Mariott Santa Ynez

Your WSET Level 3 exam will take place on

April 23, 2023 at 10:00 AM (Pacific)

at

555 McMurray Road

Buelton, CA 93427

 

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Art Hotel Denver

Your WSET Level 3 exam will take place on

March 5, 2023 at 10:00 AM (Mountain)

at

1201 Broadway

Denver, CO 80203

 

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Your WSET Level 3 exam will take place on

February 12, 2023 at 10:00 AM (Central)

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1719 West End Ave.

Nashville, TN 37203

 

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Epicurean Hotel

Your WSET Level 3 exam will take place on

March 19, 2023 at 10:00 AM (Eastern)

at

1207 S Howard Ave,

Tampa, FL 33606

 

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Your WSET Level 3 exam will take place on

January 22, 2023 at 10:00 AM (Pacific)

at

2501 Oak Street

Napa, CA 94559

 

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