The Beer Judge Certification Program or BJCP is a non-profit  organization formed in "to promote beer literacy and the appreciation of real beer, and to recognize beer tasting and evaluation skills. First, it provides a standards-based organization supplying qualified judges to both amateur and commercial brewing competitions designed to promote the appreciation of beer styles and their accurate production by brewers. The BJCP tracks members' participation as judges, organizers, or stewards in BJCP-sanctioned brewing competitions and awards continuing education units for participation. The BJCP also publishes style guidelines categorizing beer , mead , and cider styles. These guidelines are used in both the examination of Judges by the BJCP and, voluntarily, by brewing competition organizers; the BJCP also encourages prospective test-takers to study the available literature on styles and brewing. New style guidelines were released in May
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The BJCP website migration is currently in progress, as many of you have no doubt noticed. We are posting new content on the new website first, and are migrating our legacy content right now.
This is not a simple moving of files; all documents and data are being reviewed and refreshed as they are moved. New content is also being added. For content that has been fully migrated, we have placed links on the current website pointing to the new website. We understand that it may be a little confusing to see material in two locations, so we ask for your patience during this transition.
Once we have completed the move, the new server will be renamed to be www. News stories are being posted to the new site, so please check there for revised content or use this direct link.
As readers of our newsletter know, we are starting the election season so please check that story for all the details. We are also preparing for improvements to the exam calendar, so those registering exams will now be asked for exact dates for exams as well as the location. Expect more changes to the new website as the migration continues and we optimize our content. The changes we are making should make our content easier to maintain, more consistent and accurate, and better able to support our planned expansions.
Thanks again for your patience and support as we complete this large and complex project. The Exam and Education Directorates are very pleased to announce the release of the inaugural offering of the Grader Training Program. The Beer Judging Exam Grader Training is a joint effort aimed at exposing new graders to a trial exercise ahead of grading their first set of exams, as well as provide existing graders with an opportunity to re-calibrate.
Anyone who is a has a rank of National or higher will automatically be granted access to these courses. More information regarding the Grader Training Program can be found here. For more about the training portal itself and the planned roadmap click here. The book has a durable cover and is printed double-sided. The BJCP is working with the homebrewing and craft brewing communities in China to assist in the registration of competitions, which can be done online by any organization.
Organizers have the right to run their competitions as they see fit, consistent with these rules. Organizers have wide latitude to create a unique competition experience. Registration of the competition ensures that the experience points earned by the judges are recorded and credited towards their advancement within the judging program.
The BJCP plays a passive role in the competition registration and has no involvement in choosing the date of the competition or determining whether the entries will be homebrewed or commercial beers.
BJCP Beer Judging exams anywhere in the world may be scheduled by any groups of participants that meet the criteria specified on our website for having an exam. These criteria include having at least ten examinees who are currently BJCP judges or who have passed the online Beer Entrance Exam, and we also require that the local exam administrator work with the exam directors to ensure that the exam is scheduled on a date when qualified proctors are available to travel to the city where the exam will be held.
The examinees in China may write the scoresheets in Mandarin, English, Spanish or Portuguese, but exams written in languages other than English will be translated for the graders. This extra step typically does add more than 30 days to timeline for completing the grading and processing the results. We look forward to continued collaboration with the brewing community in China to help them improve their understanding and awareness of beer styles and provide a path on which they can become certified beer judges!
See our election center for the full results. Exam Director Scott Bickham just announced that the online entrance exam at bjcp. The Spanish and Portuguese versions will follow in a few months after the volunteers who are translating the style guidelines can turn their attention to the questions that feed into each question exam.
The exam based on the guidelines will be available until the end of the year, after which all Beer Judging exams will be based on the Style Guidelines. The new questions were written to better closely match the style descriptions, and the grammar and punctuation errors were cleaned up to improve the readability and to make them easier to translated into other languages.
A number of problem questions with either incorrect or ambiguous answers were either corrected or removed, so this should provide additional incentives to take the version of the BJCP Entrance exam. As noted in the previous update, questions on three historical styles Roggenbier, London Brown Ale and Pre-Prohibition Lager were removed, but new questions were added on styles in the European Sour Beer Category. The styles tested on the exam come from Categories ; however there are currently no questions on the Specialty IPA since these styles have not yet proliferated to some parts of the US let alone our international judging community.
We will add questions on these styles at some point, but will post a message on our website communicating the date when the new questions will be integrated into the exam. Cider Exam team lead Bruce Buerger provided this recent status update on progress towards the cider exam.
We have records of over a million beers being judged during this time. There are now separate documents for Beer, Mead, and Cider styles, which allows them to be updated in the future on different schedules. The guidelines are still available for use. BJCP exams will begin to use the guidelines on exams given in November More information will be posted as it is available. Tests prior to 1 November will be based on the guidelines. BJCP-sanctioned competitions may use either set of guidelines.
Check with individual competition organizers for specific rules. The BJCP expects that by the end of , all competitions will use the guidelines. Note that most style-related documents and information posted refers to the guidelines. As additional formats and translations are available, we will note that in the Style Center.
A small but important update has been made to the Competition Handbook to clarify guidance for Best of Show rounds. Winners should not be selected based on comparing scores from different flights; the beers must be directly compared by a single panel of judges to select a winner.
The same holds true for selecting category winners. There will be a major change with sensory kit orders placed on or after April 1, We are discontinuing purchase of the 24 vial comprehensive kit and will now only offer a 12 vial basic kit.
Two main factors have led to this change. One, we received feedback that many of the vials in the Siebel comprehensive kit are going unused due to the obscure nature of the characteristic. The second is that Siebel has changed their vendor and is now allowing custom kits to be built. After much discussion, we have determined that a basic 12 vial custom kit is our best choice at this time for both exam prep classes and member training. The new custom kit will consist of the following:.
When determining which characteristics to offer, we intentionally excluded those that can be easily reproduced at home. The CEP team will develop a flyer containing guidelines to supplement the Siebel kit that talks about what other faults class leaders should include in sensory training, and how to properly doctor those samples.
This will be done prior to the new kits being shipped. Shipping costs have increased due to an international vendor, and keeping the member cost the same will allow more members to purchase kits before the budget cap is reached each year. Anyone wishing to purchase the comprehensive kit may still do so but will need to place that order directly with Siebel. The BJCP will no longer subsidize this kit or be involved in the ordering process. Questions regarding this new kit can be directed to the CEP Team.
Since the NHC we've been hard at work to make some improvements to our services, and are now happy to announce their availability. We are continuing to work on projects to improve the portal experience, to automate workflows, to reduce service times, and to refresh our materials.
We are reorganizing and expanding content for our new web site, and hope to launch it later this year. The Exam Structure document has been revised now that the new exam program has fully phased in.
The document describes the requirements for different ranks, and how one progresses through the exam system. The major points are that the Apprentice rank is time-limited, and that those failing to progress to Recognized or above will be reclassified from Active status to Affiliated status. Affiliated judges have to start over in the exam program to become active, but keep their BJCP ID and past experience points.
Due to an unprecedented demand for Siebel off-flavor kits driven by both a growth in the number of exams and in the demand for kits by members, a new pricing structure for kits has been adopted as of 22 April The amount budgeted for the entire year was consumed by the end of March, so immediate action was required. Future price adjustments may be necessary depending on demand.
The number of exams given has doubled since when the exam kits were introduced. This coincides with the rollout of a new Quarterly Written Exam that will allow multiple, geographically-dispersed sites to give written exams at the same time, and then combine them for grading purposes.
The intent is to allow more written exams to be given without requiring a minimum number of examinees per site; this also frees up more slots for tasting exams on the exam calendar. Rebel Brewer is now hosting the BJCP Pro Shop online store, offering polo shirts in sizes for men and women, as well as new short sleeve workshirts. Organizers for all previously-scheduled exams were contacted, and were given the opportunity to move their exams forward in the schedule.
Those changes have been processed, which resulted in additional exam slots being available for all of Please see the current exam schedule for availability. As announced at the BJCP Member's Meeting at the NHC, the backlog of exams has been cleared and new exams are being processed with an average turnaround time of 3 months.
Because of this improvement in exam processing and the current availability of exam graders, the Exam Directors have decided to raise the limit on the number of exam sites per month from 8 to 10, starting in October We will continue to monitor exam turnaround and consider raising the limits further in the future.
The Exam Directors will be contacting existing exam sites to determine if any existing exams wish to move forward in the schedule. They will move through the schedule in an orderly manner. Once existing exams have been moved forward, any open slots will be shown on the Exam Calendar and likely noted in a web page announcement. In preparation for handling the increased exam workload, new Exam Directors and Associate Exam Directors have been named.
For the current roster of officers, please see our officers page. Steve Piatz has taken on the new role of Lead Exam Director, responsible for coordinating exam directorate policy and procedures, and handling scheduling of exams and graders. The remaining Exam Directors are responsible for overseeing and reviewing all exams. The Exam Directors have also approved processes for requesting large tasting exam sites 20 to 48 examinees.
These procedures are described in the Exam Scheduling Procedures page. We can always use interested exam graders; to volunteer, send an email to the Exam Directors. This is the largest set of exams ever given; yet there were 11 open tasting seats.
No one was turned away from the exams.
Beer Judge Certification Program (BJCP)
Beer Judge Certification Program