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Frequently Asked Questions about Ecole Chocolat
We hope these answers will help you understand our programs and gain expectations of what is possible based on the knowledge and techniques you acquire with us.
Frequently Asked Questions
How much can I learn about chocolate making online?
Many years of experience in online education has taught us that you can learn a lot! Adult learners taking online programs find that the ability to schedule their studies into a busy lifestyle – instead of trying to fit their life around a classroom session – provides them with more opportunity to actually "study", practice and learn. Our online chocolate-making curriculum is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and at no specific time do you have to be sitting in front of your computer. We can't do live sessions as our students come from all different timezones around the world
A one- or two-hour session is perfect to enhance retention of the material and techniques. We understand that if you enroll in a program, you have committed your hard-earned time and money to this chocolate making program. So we want to give you the opportunity to get the most out of the curriculum and succeed in your career goals.
Our Learning Centre is robust and delivers the lessons, technique instructions, tutorial videos and case studies in an easy-to-use format. In addition, it also features activities such as forums, chats, glossaries, polls and questionnaires, all of which enhance your learning experience and encourage communication among all participants.
And we do mean robust! Our program curriculum contains anywhere from 75 - 122 learning activities to make sure you develop the expertise you need.
What are the opportunities for someone trained as a chocolatier or chocolate maker?
You have many choices once you complete the chocolate making program:
- If you come to our chocolate school interested in starting or expanding a chocolate business, you'll be well on your way to making that goal a reality. You'll understand what's needed to make the business a success, whether you choose to create a luxury gourmet chocolate business, a family-oriented chocolate-candy making business, or a food service or catering business specializing in chocolate.
- If you come to our chocolate school without a culinary background or certification, you'll leave prepared to seek employment within the confectionary, baking, catering or food service industries. Keep in mind that you'll likely have to augment what you learn in Ecole Chocolat programs with additional training specific to the type of skills needed in that particular industry.
- If you come to our chocolate school as a chef, baker, food-service employee or caterer looking for a career change or advancement, you'll have developed an additional skill set that will make you more valuable to prospective employers.
I've been making chocolates at home for friends and family and want to become more expert in my techniques. Is there a program for me at Ecole Chocolat?
If you want to become an expert in chocolate work but aren't interested in starting a business, we offer that opportunity in our programs - see this page for more details: Chocolate Making at Home. You'll get the same intensive learning experience and receive a certificate, but will not be required to complete the business-focused assignments.
How much time each week will I need to set aside to study in the program?
We have organized the lessons, technique instructions and exercises as well as assignments for the average student to complete in approximately 8 hours each week. We wanted you to be able to study over one weekend session or by putting in about an hour each day. Our programs provide anywhere from 30 - 120+ hours of instruction, study, research and practice.
I have ethical/dietary restrictions. Will I still be able to make beautiful chocolates?
At Ecole Chocolat, we always have a number of students interested in working with chocolate and making chocolate products that meet special needs for both ethical or dietary reasons. Our students and graduates work in organic, fair trade, sustainable and functional (i.e., low/no sugar, keto, ingredient-enhanced, raw, no GMO, gluten-free, vegan, etc.). In our programs, working with a specialized chocolate need or want is not a problem. Click here for more....
When are your programs offered during the year?
Each year we offer sessions of our Core Programs:
Professional Chocolatier Program starting January, March or April & September
Chocolate Making from the Bean Program starting February & September
Chocolate Quality and Shelf Life starting February & September
Chocolate Masterclass Programs click the link to see dates
Is there a restriction on the number of students who can enroll in each online program?
Even though the curriculum is online, we do cut off registrations when we reach a number our instructor and online tutors feel they will have adequate time to work with properly. Our programs usually fill about a week before the date they start. TO ENSURE A SEAT IN THE PROGRAM, you should register with your payment at least a week before the program start date.
Do I need to be a chef or have great cooking skills to enroll and excel?
No, you don't need special skills or qualifications. Chocolate work involves very specific skills and techniques not used in other types of cuisine, so everyone starts at the same level, no matter how adept they are in the kitchen. Our intensive curriculum in the chocolate making process takes you from basic skills to more advanced work at your own pace. Also, because you're working in your own kitchen, you have the opportunity to practice again and again – without time constraints – until you master the technique.
Will this "intensive part-time" program allow me to continue to work full time?
Yes. Our online Professional Chocolatier Program, Chocolate Making from the Bean Program and Chocolate Quality and Shelf Life Program were created with you in mind, whether you're a busy professional who puts in many hours on the job or a parent or spouse juggling multiple roles between family and work/volunteer responsibilities. You can fit your study times to your real-life schedule.
Are Ecole Chocolat programs accredited?
Because our students plan to work or open businesses in many different countries around the globe, we have not sought accreditation in any jurisdiction, as it is too difficult to achieve when there are literally hundreds of different government-approval systems. Accreditation in Canada, for example, would be of no use to our graduates outside of that country. If you're looking for registration funding, a few students have been able to secure funding from their governmental agencies for a private professional culinary school, as that category of educational institutions fits within the guidelines of their programs. You would have to research your own government regulations to see what is available.
Our school has been delivering programs since 2003 and is recognized in the chocolate industry for the quality of our programs, providing many opportunities for our graduates.
Does Ecole Chocolat offer continuing education or job placement opportunities?
Yes. Our Chocolate Masterclass Programs are the next step forward for those who want to advance their skills and knowledge. While we don't have official placement services, our strong ties in the fine chocolate industry mean that we receive periodic job postings for our graduates.
Is there support available for graduates of Ecole Chocolat programs?
Yes, we have an EC team member responsible for a number of support programs. Everything from encouraging students to get to know each other during the courses via the Chef's Table Forums and Chat Rooms . . . to answering questions long after graduation . . . to sponsoring the EC Graduate Centre with its very active and lively Graduate Forum . . . to featuring our graduates in media releases and social media . . . to the Graduate Page on this website. As an EC graduate, you are always a member of our family. We are never more than an email or a phone call away.
How did we get our name?
Ecole Chocolat is French and means in English "Chocolate School." How is Ecole Chocolat pronounced? Ecole = /ekol/ Chocolat = /shokola/
How do the Ecole Chocolat programs compare to others in curriculum and cost?
Here we have listed the websites of other educational programs that focus on professional chocolate making to give you an opportunity to compare. These classes focus on specific techniques or recipes and differ greatly from our programs in length. The much longer time you spend in our programs, allows us to not only teach you ALL the modern techniques and recipes used in the chocolate arts but also what you need to know to start your chocolate business.
Most professional culinary schools offer one or two chocolate technique classes within their Pastry program. For example:
George Brown College
International Culinary Centre
The other training schools in the chocolate industry are supported by a chocolate manufacturer or chocolate equipment supplier in order to promote their products:
Barry Callebaut Academy
We list the cancellation policy for each program at the bottom of the program overview page and the program registration page.
Get reminders about upcoming classes! To receive program updates and news, click the link below.