Q Arabica Combined training & exam (6 Days)

Upcoming course: September 2019

Note: Advanced level course, not suitable for inexperienced/new cuppers.

A good bean is the first step toward achieving a perfect cup of coffee. Reinforcing the standards of specialty coffee links everyone in the supply chain with an integrity that shows pride in the product.

According to SCA standards for arabica, a coffee that is free of primary defects or unclean odours and scores 80 or above on the SCA cupping form is considered Specialty Grade. While many variables in roasting and brewing affect the taste of coffee, Q Coffees™ confirm that the beans being used are specialty and among the highest quality in the world. This is the only mark that certifies coffees on a quality scale for arabica.

COURSE Requirements

No formal prerequisites. However, the Q Grader Exam is an advanced level course and not suitable for inexperienced/new cuppers. Helpful tools include:

  • Cupping Handbook

  • Green Coffee Classification Chart

  • Brewing Handbook

  • Cupping Protocol & Cupping Form, among others

World class coffee training combined with 6 star service! Bettr Barista has set the benchmark for quality training. I had a great time learning from Trish, such an experienced and credentialed Q-trainer.
— Christopher Leow, Head Barista, Bicycle Barista

Source: Coffee Quality Institute

Source: Coffee Quality Institute

Course Schedule includes: 

  • Introduction, Q System Overview

  • Review of Cupping Skills Module

  • Calibration Cupping - Training Exercise

  • Green Grading Skills Training Exercise & Exam

  • Review Code of Conduct

  • Olfactory Skills Module & Exams

  • Cupping Exams

  • Triangulation Exams

  • Matching Pairs Skills Module & Exams

  • Sample Roast I.D. Skills Module & Exams

  • General Knowledge Test Module

  • Sensory Skills Training Exercise

Q Arabica GRader course fees

S$2,600 including GST

Q Arabica GRader Retake 


Please contact us with the following required information. We will be in touch once we have reviewed your grade book:

  • Your full name

  • Your Q Grader course number

  • The module(s) you wish to retake

Q Arabica Grader Calibration

upcoming calibration: 31 may 2019

Licensed Q Arabica Graders must calibrate with each other every three years in order to test their abilities to accurately evaluate coffee quality based on their gained experience, knowledge, and standards/protocols learned in Q training.

It is mandatory for all Q Graders to participate in calibration if they wish to remain active as a Q Grader in good standing.

The calibration consists of three cupping flights, (or tables - 6 samples each) of coffees with distinct attributes. All Q Graders must be in calibration and pass 2 of the 3 flights in order to renew their licenses and continue as Licensed Q Graders. Upon passing, the Q Grader license will remain valid for another 36 months, starting on the day of expiration

CALIBRATION fee: S$600 (including gst)



Trish's experience in the industry spans over 25 years as a coffee roaster, green coffee buyer, and teacher of all things coffee. An avid traveler in coffee growing regions worldwide, she teaches cupping to coffee producers and coffee professionals around the world. She is also credited with coining the term "third wave coffee" and identifying the relevant concepts.

Trish is a licensed Q-Grader and credentialed Q Trainer by the Coffee Quality Institute. She has served on the SCAA’s Roasters Guild Executive Council, was a charter member of the World Barista Championship Board of Directors and a founding member of the Barista Guild of America.

Trish was the Director of Programs with the Coffee Quality Institute: Q and Educational Services from 2013-2017. She is the roastmaster and co-founder of Wrecking Ball Coffee Roasters.