Face-to-face learning VS e-learning … what should you choose?

16 April 2024

Today, it’s our learner Audrey STEPHANT who takes the floor and tells you about her experience with WiSP. Happy reading!

Passionate about wines and spirits, eager to learn more and uncover the secrets behind these beverages, it was only natural that the WiSP campus came to mind to meet this new challenge… pursuing the renowned WSET certifications.

The WiSP campus was immediately an obvious choice. While the reputation of its instructors’ quality speaks for itself, I was immediately drawn to the diversity of offerings, with the campus providing access to the full range of WSET certifications (and even more) for both the wine and spirits sectors, my goal being to fully embrace this challenge in both fields!

I was also attracted by the freedom of options allowing anyone to pursue customized learning. The choice of languages (undertaking the learning in French or English) – I myself followed both options – as well as the choice between in-person, online, or even hybrid instruction.

No more excuses, therefore, to not take the plunge!

So, that’s exactly what I did last March, joyfully diving into the world of spirits, aiming to conquer the renowned WSET Level 2 Spirits.

At that time, I was finishing an MBA in Bordeaux, so I opted for the in-person format in French, as I could easily block two days in my schedule to attend the training before the exam directly at the campus.

I had a decent understanding of the cognac world (or so I thought at the time), and a whole new world opened up to me when I received my workbook.

Because although the training concludes with two days at the campus, there’s no magic, you have to put in the work beforehand!

After several hours of personal study, the time finally came to go to the campus for two days entirely dedicated to consolidating knowledge and tasting (especially learning to taste) over 25 spirits. These two days were rich in exchanges, sharing, and discoveries!

Once I had the WSET Level 2 Spirits under my belt, I wanted to tackle Level 2 in wine, this time.

My situation had changed, and my schedule didn’t allow me to be absent for three days to go to the campus. But I absolutely wanted to pass this certification, so the option of online learning became the best solution.

While I had some initial concerns, they quickly dissipated when I discovered the digital support that allowed me to progress effectively in this new challenge. The platform is engaging, user-friendly, and connects an incredible community of passionate individuals worldwide, with whom you can exchange and discuss the topics covered or the recommended tastings.

The hardest part was certainly the organization and discipline that had to be put in place (and imposed on myself) – we don’t always feel like “cramming” after a long day of work – but since the platform was dynamic and intuitive, once in front of the tablet, it was hard to tear myself away.

So, prepared and confident in my knowledge, I sat for the exam. Once again, the choice is possible, either online from home or directly at the campus.

Still hesitating? What about the ups and downs of in-person or online learning:

Face-to-face learning:


  • A passionate instructor who ensures that knowledge is acquired and understood during the time spent with you;
  • Meeting other learners, allowing for exchanges and discoveries;
  • Tasting wines and/or spirits accompanied and guided by a qualified instructor;
  • A good training session just before taking the exam.


  • Being able to free up entire days in your schedule to continue learning on campus.

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Online courses:


  • Total autonomy in learning;
  • Access to digital content that allows learning and practice anywhere (mobile app, tablet, etc.);
  • An engaging and interactive interface to complement the student workbook;
  • A multicultural online community for exchanging and interacting;
  • Total time flexibility to balance work and learning.


  • Tasting wines and/or spirits must be done alone and at one’s own expense (Note: for those interested in WSET Wine, a kit approved by the WSET containing samples of the main wines to taste is available, so this can be a good alternative to avoid spending too much at the wine shop!);
  • Organizing one’s work, it’s better to be disciplined to succeed in learning and arrive prepared for the exam.

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And if some of you still hesitate as you read this, here’s my advice: go for it, no matter which option you choose, keep in mind that it will require discipline and commitment but in return, you will dive into an exciting world and you might even find yourself wanting, just like me, to learn and discover more and more… that’s all I wish for you!

Enjoy the tasting 😉

Audrey STEPHANT, LinkedIn




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