Revision & Preparation


Revision and Training

Candidates are recommended to consult the standard text books which deal with the malting and related processes and to keep in touch with the more practical papers, which appear in the various journals. A suggested reading list is appended to these notes.  Candidates are also advised to become members of the Institute of Brewing and Distilling which will give them access to a bank of useful on-line articles and subscription to the Brewer and Distiller magazine.

Whilst the examination is designed to test the candidate's practical knowledge of malting, it is emphasised that the candidate should demonstrate through the exam the capacity to construct a reasoned, logical and literate written answer.  This may demand particular effort and training for those candidates with limited experience of written examinations.

Candidates are advised to refresh their exam technique by providing written answers to questions for proof reading by their sponsors prior to the examination or by requesting mock exam papers from MAGB which will then be marked by an MD Examiner and results relayed to the candidate.  There will be a charge for providing this service.  Read the question, consult reference literature and roughly outline an answer.  Then sit down and write and complete the answer within the permitted time span on the paper.  It is often noticed that candidates are not fully prepared to write extensively over a three hour period in the exam, which is reflected in the quality of their presentation.

Past examination questions are available here. It is strongly recommended that candidates use these as practice questions.

Do take up invitations to learn about other malting plants and methods other than your own.  If you cannot make your own arrangements for exchange visits, contact the MAGB office who will offer assistance.

The Examination

The standard of the examination will be high, and will be confined to practical and theoretical aspects of malting including a comprehensive knowledge of the uses of malt.

The examination will consist of three written papers, each of 3 hours duration:

  • Module 1 – Raw Materials
  • Module 2 – Processing
  • Module 3 – Health, Safety, Environment, Quality and Food Safety

For each paper there will be one compulsory question and a number of other questions to be chosen by the candidate from the options on the paper. The modules can be taken either separately or all together.  Candidates who fail any of the three modules can choose to retake them another year up to a maximum of two retakes per module.  The Diploma will not be awarded until all three modules have been passed Candidates must indicate on their registration forms how many modules they intend to take in 2017.  There will be a charge of £200 per module for retakes of failed modules but no extra charge for taking the modules separately.

The three written papers will account for a third each of the total marks. Candidates must achieve a pass mark in each module of the examination to be successful. The Pass mark that must be achieved for each module is 50%. All written work from overseas candidates will be sent to the UK for assessment.

Examination Technique

Examiners have found that many answers to previous papers have been poorly constructed and presented in muddled sentences.  Answers should be roughly mapped out beforehand so as to cover all aspects of the question.  Marks will be deducted for poor standards of writing and presentation.

Answers should be concise and not lengthened with non-relevant information.  Cover as much varied detail as possible and do not write endless paragraphs about one small facet of the topic. Candidates must read the questions carefully otherwise answers may miss the main points or become too lengthy resulting in insufficient time to properly answer other questions and losing marks overall.

Where a question is not directly associated with malting, try to relate your answer to show its significance to the industry.

Try to preface answers with a short introduction and make the final paragraph a concise summary.

Too often candidates include information that is superficial and inaccurate. Examiners are not looking for fine detail of a category that only a specialist would be expected to understand and padding out answers with such detail will not gain marks.  Answers should reveal facts that are relevant to the practical solution or understanding of a problem and their significance to the industry should be explained.

A sample question and notes about what should be covered in the answer can be found here and at the end of the Syllabus.

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