GENERAL POLICIES

UPDATED: 07/2022

Students agree to these terms and conditions upon checkout.

MEMBERSHIP SITE ANNUAL SUBSCRIPTION

Annual membership subscription cancellations received within 48 hour of registration may be eligible to receive a full refund less a $20 service fee. Cancellations received after the stated deadline will not be eligible for a refund.

When cancelling an annual membership subscription, all future charges associated with future years of your subscription will be cancelled. You may notify us of your intent to cancel at any time; your cancellation will become effective at the end of your current annual billing period. You will not receive a refund, prorated or otherwise, for the remainder of the annual term. However, your subscription access and/or delivery and accompanying subscriber benefits will continue for the remainder of the current annual billing period.

ONLINE COURSE & WORKSHOP REFUNDS & TRANSFERS

Cancellations of confirmed online course enrollments and workshops are accepted up to 14 business days before the start of the course. An administration fee of $50 plus the full cost of the study materials, exam fees, and wine kits supplied 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 or student can be made up to 14 business days before the course start date on payment of a $50 admin fee, plus the cost of any additional study materials, exam fees, and wine kits that may be applicable. Separate WSET exam cancellation/transfer rules apply.

**Cancellations less than 14 days before the online course start date or after the online course has started, forfeit any refund options. Transfers to a new course are possible for 50% of course tuition plus $25 shipping.**

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

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. Students can be transferred to a later course if medical documentation is provided. 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.

WSET EXAM CANCELLATIONS & TRANSFERS

If for any reason, you are not able to take your WSET Certificate examination on your scheduled date, you must give us notice. Cancellations with over 30 days notice before your exam, you can transfer your WSET Level 1, 2, or 3 exam date for a $50 rescheduling fee.

If you cancel/change the date with less than 30 days’ notice, you will need to pay the following rescheduling fees:

  • WSET Level 1 or 2 Exam Reorder Fee $200.00
  • WSET Level 3 Wine Exam Reorder Fee $250.00

If you do not pass your exam on the first attempt you may resit your exams. Please note the following re-sit fees:

  • WSET Level 1 or 2 Exam Resit $200
  • WSET Level 3 Exam Resit – Tasting $100
  • WSET Level 3 Exam Resit – Theory $150
  • WSET Level 3 Exam Resit – Theory + Tasting $250

COURSE CANCELLATIONS

Napa Valley Wine Academy reserves the right to cancel or change a course date. Napa Valley Wine Academy will typically arrange an alternative date in these infrequent circumstances and offer students either a transfer to a new date or an alternative course if this date is not convenient. If neither option is made available by Napa Valley Wine Academy, a refund, minus the full cost of the study materials and wine kits supplied, will be offered.

Napa Valley Wine Academy strongly advises that students arrange insurance to cover unforeseen events such as illness, unfavorable weather, or cancellation of a course for which travel and accommodation costs have been incurred.

INSTRUCTORS

In the unlikely event that the advertised instructor cannot teach the class, Napa Valley Wine Academy reserves the right to substitute the advertised instructor with another appropriate instructor.

NVWA ADMISSIONS POLICY

Admission into any of the Napa Valley Wine Academy programs/courses requires that you: be a minimum age of 21 at the time of enrollment and be able to present a valid government-issued form of identification on the first day of class attendance. If you cannot produce a valid form of identification, you will not be able to partake in the day’s course. You must be 21 years of age for any public or private event held at Napa Valley Wine Academy, with no exceptions.

NVWA ACADEMIC HONOR CODE

Napa Valley Wine Academy takes academic integrity very seriously. By enrolling in one of our programs, you agree to pledge the following:

I affirm that I will not plagiarize, use unauthorized materials, or give or receive illegitimate help on assignments, papers, or examinations. I will also uphold equity and honesty in the evaluation of my work and the work of others. I do so to sustain a vibrant and honest wine community.

Any academic dishonesty or malpractice will NOT be tolerated and is defined as any behavior on the part of a student that results in giving or receiving unauthorized assistance, using any unauthorized resources, or otherwise cheating during any academic exercise, test, or exam. Any form of plagiarism or claiming credit for work that is not the students own is also considered a violation of our academic code of honor.

As a Napa Valley Wine Academy student, if you are given access to our online student classroom, you are expected to keep your username and password confidential and not allow anyone else to use your credentials to log in to your account. Sharing access or passwords to our online student classroom is considered a breach of academic integrity and will result in your access suspension.

Any violation of our Academic Honor Code will result in receiving an immediate failing grade and suspension from the course and losing your tuition.

Special Consideration Policy

Introduction
Special consideration is an action taken after an assessment to allow students who have been disadvantaged by temporary illness, injury, indisposition, or adverse circumstances at the time of the assessment to demonstrate attainment.
Scope of policy
Special consideration will not give an unfair advantage over students for whom special consideration is not being applied or alter the assessment demands of the qualification as detailed in the applicable Specification. A student may be eligible for special consideration if:

  • Performance in an assessment is affected by circumstances beyond the candidate’s control. This may include recent personal illness, accident, bereavement, or examination room conditions;
  • Alternative assessment arrangements which were agreed in advance of the assessment proved inappropriate or inadequate;
  • The application of special consideration would not mislead the user of the certificate as to the student’s attainment.

Applying for special consideration
All Special Consideration Application Form must be submitted to Napa Valley Wine Academy four (4) working days after the assessment date for which special consideration is being sought. Eligibility will only be considered if accompanied by supporting independent documentation, supporting information will be passed to WSET and handled in accordance with their data privacy policy.  

In cases of serious disruption during the examination, the Examinations Officer must submit a detailed report of the circumstances and students affected to WSET. This must be returned with the completed examination papers.
Napa Valley Wine Academy will keep records of all applications for special consideration.

Reasonable Adjustments Policy

Introduction
WSET and Napa Valley Wine Academy seek to assess all students in a way that puts them at no disadvantage or advantage, over other students.
A reasonable adjustment is any action that helps to reduce the effect of a disability or difficulty that places the student at a substantial disadvantage in the assessment situation. Reasonable adjustments are approved by WSET and put in place before the assessment activity takes place; they constitute an arrangement to give the student access to the qualification. The use of a reasonable adjustment is not considered during the assessment of a student’s work.
Scope of this policy
Reasonable adjustments must not give an unfair advantage over students for whom reasonable adjustments are not being made or affect the reliability and validity of the assessment outcomes as detailed in the applicable Specification.
Reasonable adjustments may involve:

  • Changing standard assessment arrangements, for example, allowing students extra time to complete the assessment activity;
  • Adapting assessment materials, such as providing materials in large text format;
  • Providing access facilitators during the assessment, such as a sign language interpreter or reader;
  • Re-organizing the assessment room, such as removal of visual stimuli for an autistic student.

Applying for a reasonable adjustment
Napa Valley Wine Academy must identify at the time of a student’s enrollment any special needs which may require a reasonable adjustment at the time of the examination. Napa Valley Wine Academy must submit a Reasonable Adjustment Application Form to the WSET  at least six weeks before the examination date in the case of WSET qualifications at Levels 1-3 and at least ten weeks before the examination date in the case of the WSET Level 4 Diploma. Supporting evidence must be provided with the completed form.
The specific arrangements for the examination process itself, or for marking, will be agreed upon in each case between Napa Valley Wine Academy Examinations Officer and WSET and will vary according to individual circumstances. WSET reserves the right to seek the advice of independent agencies as appropriate in coming to a decision on specific arrangements. Please note that Napa Valley Wine Academy can not offer reasonable adjustments to any students until this has been agreed with WSET. Supporting information will be passed to WSET and handled in accordance with their data privacy policy.  
Students and their advisors should be aware that it is not appropriate to make requests for reasonable adjustments where the student’s difficulty directly affects performance in the attributes that are the focus of the assessment.
Napa Valley Wine Academy will keep records of all reasonable adjustment applications.

Diversity and Equality Policy

Napa Valley Wine Academy is committed to upholding the principles of diversity and equality in all areas of its work, seeking to ensure that all students and other stakeholders are always treated fairly and equally.
Napa Valley Wine Academy assures equality of opportunity for students by:

  • Promoting open access to all of our qualifications on offer (having regard to the legal minimum age for the retail purchase of alcohol and assessment competence standards);
  • Allowing students with special educational needs, disabilities, or temporary injuries to access  assessments without changing the demands of the assessment in line with our Reasonable Adjustment and Special Consideration policies;
  • Ensuring that this policy is considered during the development of new qualifications and;
  • To have a diversity and equality policy in place which promotes open access to our qualifications;
  • Inviting feedback on diversity issues from students and other stakeholders;
  • Working with relevant organizations as appropriate to develop measures to identify and prevent inequality of opportunity; and
  • Review this policy regularly to ensure it meets legislative and organizational requirements and is fit for purpose.

Napa Valley Wine Academy assures equality of opportunity by considering applications from any organization or individual who can demonstrate that they meet our approval criteria.

Conflict of Interest Policy

Introduction
WSET has approved Napa Valley Wine Academy as an Approved Program Provider (APP). As a regulated awarding organization, WSET is required to identify, monitor, and manage actual, potential, and perceived conflicts of interest (‘Conflicts of Interest’). This is essential to safeguard the integrity of WSET qualifications and promote confidence in WSET processes.
This document offers guidance to individuals engaged in activities undertaken on behalf of WSET (the awarding organization of the Wine & Spirit Education Trust), which have the potential to lead them to act contrary to the interests of WSET in the development, delivery, assessment, and award of its regulated qualifications.
It defines what is meant by conflict of interest, describes such conflicts of interest in the context of working with WSET, identifies those conflicts of interest that can be managed and are therefore acceptable and those that cannot be managed and are therefore unacceptable. It also gives examples of potential conflicts of interest.
Scope of this Policy
This policy is applicable to all staff members employed by the Napa Valley Wine Academy and to any individuals acting on behalf of Napa Valley Wine Academy
Definition of Conflict of Interest
A Conflict of Interest exists where an individual has interests or loyalties that could adversely influence their judgment, objectivity, or loyalty to WSET when conducting activities associated with WSET qualifications.
Examples of Conflicts of Interest in the context of an awarding organization include:

  • The undertaking of any moderation of assessment of student by an individual who has a personal interest in the result of the assessment for any or all individuals concerned;
  • The tutoring of students by an individual involved in the assessment process;
  • The undertaking of a WSET qualification by any individual employed by an Approved Program Provider;
  • The undertaking of a WSET qualification by any individual employed by WSET;
  • The coaching of students by any individual involved in the assessment of student scripts or the authoring of examination questions;
  • The employment by an APP of individuals engaged in the delivery of taught programs or in the role of Internal Assessor in another APP;
  • The investigation of a non-compliance incident by someone who is unable to act impartially.

Some of these Conflicts of Interest can be managed and are therefore acceptable. For example, the marking of WSET Level 3 tasting assessments by Internal Assessors is verified by WSET to mitigate the risk of a Conflict of Interest. Similarly, where an employee of the WSET or one of its APPs undertakes a WSET qualification, measures can be put in place to maintain the integrity of the assessment, provided this has been notified to WSET in advance.
Some Conflicts of Interest cannot be managed and are not acceptable. For example, it would be inappropriate for an individual involved in authoring examination questions or compiling examination papers to teach or coach students.
Identification of Conflicts of Interest
Any individual involved in the delivery of WSET qualifications who becomes aware of a Conflict of Interest must inform the Quality Assurance (QA) in writing immediately. Conflict of Interest declarations will be recorded by WSET on the Conflicts of Interest Register.
Please note that any APP that fails to declare a Conflict of Interest may be in breach of its terms of approval, and sanctions may be applied in accordance with the Malpractice and Maladministration Policy. Where a Conflict of Interest is identified by WSET rather than the individual(s) concerned, the HOQC will take steps to mitigate the effect of the Conflict of Interest and may apply sanctions to an APP in accordance with the Malpractice and Maladministration Policy.
Management of Conflicts of Interest
Napa Valley Wine Academy has procedures in place to manage specific Conflicts of Interest. To report a conflict of interest please refer to the following section. 

Malpractice and Maladministration Policy

Napa Valley Wine Academy protects the interests of our students and safeguards the integrity of WSET qualifications by ensuring compliance with WSET Policies and Procedures. Non-compliance with Napa Valley Wine Academy and WSET Policies and Procedures generally falls into one of two categories:

Maladministration, where non-compliance is accidental rather than intentional, and malpractice, where non-compliance is deliberate or the result of negligence.

Whether a situation is maladministration or malpractice will be determined by Napa Valley Wine Academy and WSET following an investigation.

If you think an incident has occurred, please email us immediately at support@napavalleywineacademy.com Please include a detailed account of the circumstances surrounding the suspicions and allegations.

Malpractice or maladministration may include:

  • Submission of false or inaccurate information to gain a qualification;
  • Cheating, including the use of unauthorized devices or materials;
  • Failure to a disclose Conflict of Interest;
  • Disruptive behavior in an exam;
  • Plagiarism of any nature by students;
  • Impersonation (including forgery of signatures);

FORMAL COMPLAINT PROCESS

Introduction:

Napa Valley Wine Academy is committed to providing a learning and working environment in which complaints are responded to promptly and with minimum distress to all parties. Napa Valley Wine Academy is committed to a visible, accessible, and fair complaints process. Napa Valley Wine Academy views student complaints as providing an opportunity to review and improve its policies and practices and also to gain insight into student levels of satisfaction.
Scope:
This policy applies to student complaints made in the context of Napa Valley Wine Academy’s provision of WSET® Courses and Examinations as a WSET® Approved Program Provider.
Definitions:
What is a complaint?
A complaint is a formal statement expressing dissatisfaction that requires action or response. The complaint may be in relation to any aspect of the course delivery, conduct of teaching staff or management, or matters pertaining to the examination process or content. Where the complaint is regarding a possible incorrect examination result, Napa Valley Wine Academy will provide students with appropriate information regarding the WSET® Enquiry and Appeals Process.
Policy:
Napa Valley Wine Academy’s procedures for handling student complaints are based on confidentiality, impartiality, procedural fairness, and prompt resolution. Where complaints are of a minor nature, they may be resolved informally. An informal approach is appropriate when it can be achieved. But if concerns cannot be satisfactorily resolved informally, then the formal complaints procedure should be followed. The formal complaints procedure is intended to ensure that all complaints are handled fairly and consistently. All formal complaints must be
submitted in writing, via email, or written correspondence. All formal complaints will receive a written response of the outcome of the complaint, following appropriate investigation of the circumstances.

Napa Valley Wine Academy: support@napavalleywineacademy.com
2501 Oak Street, Napa, CA 94558. www.napavalleywineacademy.com
855­513­9738

Responsibilities:

  1.  Napa Valley Wine Academy’s responsibilities will be to:
    •  acknowledge any formal complaint received in writing within ten working days
    • respond within a stated period of time of 21 working days with either a conclusion or a further update depending on the severity of the complaint
    • deal reasonably and sensitively with the complainant
    • cooperate fully in any investigation process
    • take action where appropriate, including any corrective action necessary to prevent recurrence; if the complaint relates to examination content or results, provide the student with the relevant WSET® guidance notes and forms to allow the student to utilize the WSET® Enquiries and Appeals process
  2.  A complainant’s responsibility is to:
    • bring their complaint, in writing, to Napa Valley Wine Academy’s attention within seven working days of the issue arising or within seven days of completion of the course or examination;
    • explain the problem as clearly and as fully as possible with your expected outcome;
    • allow Napa Valley Wine Academy a reasonable time to deal with the matter
    • recognize that some circumstances may be beyond Napa Valley Wine Academy’s control

Outcomes:
Students will receive written advice on the outcome of their complaints. Some of the possible outcomes of a student complaint include:

  • Through the resolution process, the student gains a better understanding of the situation so that their concerns are addressed.
  • A mutually acceptable resolution is reached through conciliation or mediation.
  • The student receives an apology, and/or the issue or behavior that was the basis of their complaint is modified. In some cases, the complaint cannot be substantiated, and no further action will result.

Referral to WSET:
If the above steps have all been completed and the student is still dissatisfied, they can file a complaint with the WSET. Please note that the WSET can only take action on complaints from students if they have followed the above procedures first. email QA@wsetglobal.com 

Confidentiality & Documentation:
All documentation relating to complaints will be kept strictly confidential and will not be accessible to anyone who is not directly involved in handling the complaint. Any material about the outcome of the complaint will be placed on the appropriate student file. A register of complaints made (anonymous of names), along with their outcomes, will be maintained to continuously improve policies and practices.

PHOTOS & VIDEO

We often take candid and group photos and videos of classes and events and use them to publicly recap or promote future classes and events. By attending a class or event hosted by us, either in person or online, you agree to allow us to use any photos or videos that contain your image or likeness on our website, email communications, social media channels, or other 3rd party advertisements without obtaining permission from you individual 

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