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Below you will find a comprehensive list of courses that are offered through the SCAA Professional Development program. Please use the tabs on the right of this page to display only the courses pertaining to your experience level, the subject area you are interested in, or the certificate program that you'd like to pursue.


CB100  |  Seed to Cup

A fundamental skill of any specialty coffee professional is to be able to identify key points and explain the journey coffee from seed to cup, having a basic grasp of concepts of coffee's history, growing conditions and chain of custody. This information is an underpinning for purchasing decisions and communication along the chain from farmer to consumer. Engaging, educating and enriching consumers of specialty coffee are inherent in the work of baristas, roasters and retailers, and this class provides accurate, concise information that surveys the custody of coffee, from farmer to barista. Having this basic framework of knowledge will help newcomers to the industry position new information as they learn on the job from others. It is a required Foundations of Coffee class to complete before attending other classes. Two alternatives to meet this requirement are: (1) Attending Coffee Farming RP206 & Coffee Processing RP207 at past events or on the eLearning platform; (2) Origin Trip Credit- https://specialtycoffee.wufoo.com/forms/zh3ctvg0hj8sfj/

CP000  |  Barista Code of Conduct

Upon completion of the Barista Level 1 Certificate course, participants must sign this Code of Conduct and Ethics before entitlements will be issued. Baristas must re-sign upon completion of the Barista Level 2 course.

CP101  |  Espresso and Milk Steaming Fundamentals Parts 1 & 2

CP101: Exceptional espresso preparation is a requirement for anyone in specialty coffee retail. Participants work closely with station instructors in small groups, pulling shots, steaming milk and preparing espresso beverages in this laboratory-style class. CP101-CP102 is designed to enable students to:
  • Discuss SCAA espresso standards and current industry trends for established retailers and baristas
  • Demystify espresso machines, grinders, and espresso preparation techniques for beginners
  • Provide hands-on experience under guidance from SCAA Instructors to prepare espresso, milk, and cafe drinks
  • Administer preventive maintenance to espresso equipment, including essential basic cleaning steps
  • Explain the importance of workstation cleanliness Introduction to Espresso.

In Part 1 (CP101) During the overview lecture, participants learn the essential elements of a quality espresso; then, in small groups participants craft espresso using SCAA protocols. This class is part of the Barista Level 1 Certificate, and Foundations of Coffee (CB100, CP151-CP152, CP103 and GE103) MUST be taken for the full Barista Level 1 Certificate. Please note: This is the first half of a 6-hour class and both parts must be taken the same day (there is a 90 minute break).

Recommended Prerequisites: CB100, CP103, CP151, CP152, GE103

CP102  |  Espresso and Milk Steaming Fundamentals Parts 1 & 2

CP102: After CP101 participants continue to work closely with station instructors in small groups, pulling shots, steaming milk and preparing espresso beverages in this laboratory-style class. In Part 2 (CP102) after learning basic theory on milk, industry-accepted recipes and steps of preparation, attendees are coached by station instructors on the espresso grinder and espresso machine, preparing espresso, steaming milk and preparing an industry-accepted beverages. This class is part of the Barista Level 1 Certificate, and Foundations of Coffee (CB100, CP151-CP152, CP103 and GE103) MUST be taken for the full Barista Level 1 certificate. Please note: This is the second half of a 6-hour class and both parts must be taken the same day (there is a 90 minute break).

Recommended Prerequisites: CB100, CP103, CP151, CP152, GE103

CP103  |  Customer Service Essentials

Outstanding customer service is a critical component of creating the specialty coffee experience. Participants will identify common keys to great customer service and also steps of service recovery for when things go wrong. During group discussions, learners strategize how to improve customer service interactions and exchange experiences and approaches that have been successful. The class was originally designed for the specialty coffee barista, but has been redesigned to be relevant for all members of the specialty coffee community. This is a required class for ALL the SCAA Certificate programs.steps of service recovery for when things go wrong. During group discussions, learners strategize how to improve customer service interactions and exchange experiences and approaches that have been successful. The class focuses on the specialty coffee barista, but is relevant for all members of the specialty coffee community. This is a required class for Barista Guild of America Certificate - Level One.

Recommended Prerequisites: CB100, CP101-CP102,

CP151  |  Brewing and Extraction Principles

This class is the foundation for all coffee brewing and is essential for any newcomer to the coffee industry. Coffee professionals need to have a strong knowledge of the principals governing optimum brewing methods and must be able to brew coffee to SCAA's vetted standards. CP151 provides this critical instruction and practice. After a 90 minute break, students return for CP152.

Recommended Prerequisites: CB100, GE103

CP152  |  Brewing and Extraction Principles Applied

This class continues to explore the six essential elements of coffee brewing, both through mechanical and manual brewing methods. Learners get hands-on time with the equipment. This is a required class in the new Foundations of Coffee and a prerequisite for all certificate programs, including the Golden Cup Technician Certificate.

Recommended Prerequisites: CB100, GE103

Required Prerequisites: CP151

GE103  |  Orientation to SCAA Cupping

Cupping is the Specialty Coffee Industry's standard for evaluating green coffee. Using the SCAA Cupping Protocol and exploring two flights of coffee, participants are introduced to and practice the SCAA protocol, and focus on basic vocabulary from the Coffee Tasters Flavor Wheel for objective, professional coffee quality evaluation. This is one of the Foundations of Coffee classes and is required for other classes in all certificate programs.

Recommended Prerequisites: CP151, CP152

Required Prerequisites: CB100