There are many choices available to a student when deciding whom they will study with and the world is quite literally their oyster. You will find that many Distance Learning Colleges have added wedding and event planning courses to their scope, which then sit amongst hundreds of other courses that range from short courses in how to use Excel to level 3 and 4 courses in landscape gardening. You won’t find the specialisation with these providers that you will find with the Academy, as they are not industry course providers. Instead they are general distance learning providers that have no exact area of expertise in the special events industry.
Other choices will include wedding planning or event planning companies that are also trying to teach others and offer courses as a sideline, or addition to their current business. Again this is not ideal, as their planning business will always take priority over their students. Our research shows that it can take up to 5 days to get a response from these providers, which doesn’t bode well for students if this is just at enquiry stage. How long will they take to respond once you are a student?
We understand that making a decision as to which training provider to go with is hard, but we have some tips for you to use when doing a course comparison:
Has the course been written in the UK? Many courses offered are simply purchased from a US company and rebranded for the UK market. The information within them has not been tailored for the UK market
What does the course cover? Remember to have a good look at the course content being offered by checking the units the course covers. These won’t always be very detailed and usually this is a good indication of the quality of the course material within it.
Speak to a representative of the training provider. This is really important. Any good training provider will be happy to speak with you at length about which courses are right for you. They will ask leading questions about what your goals are and what you wish to achieve from the course.
Can you view a sample of the course material? This should be non-negotiable. You need to try before you buy. Have a good look and read through. If there are spelling mistakes this could be an indication of the quality of the course content.
How often is the course material updated? This is very important. Our industry is always changing with new trends coming and going all the time. A great example of this is the Pantone Colour announcements that come out for each season. It is imperative that this reflected in course material otherwise you aren’t being taught about what is current. Some course material still refers to using a Rolodex – no mention of even email let alone incorporating Pinterest into your marketing.
What format is the course provided in? In this day and age the paper-based course is considered to be a bit of a dinosaur. Most students need stimulation to help keep them motivated and this can be achieved using a combination of audio, video and printed format. It is also much easier to keep the material up to date, as the update is instant. Once you have received a printed packet you can’t receive updates.
Ask about assignments and grading and how this is managed? We have heard horror stories about students receiving their certificate along with their course material. This is very worrying as there is no monitoring of the student involved or any tuition of any sort. Assignments are a necessary part of any course. We don’t believe in exams, but assignments help students to apply the information they have learnt in each unit and this is imperative to the success of a student.
Will you have a tutor assigned to you? Your tutor should be an integral part of your course. We maintain that the course material is only 50% of the value of any course. The other 50% is the input you should receive from your tutor. They are able to evaluate what you are doing and provide detailed feedback on areas for improvement.
How long does it take to complete a course? This is an interesting one as many students are looking to complete quickly. However beware of courses that state you can complete within 6 weeks or worse one weekend. It is impossible to learn everything required in that space of time. The minimum period for completion should be 6 months and it is quite acceptable to be up to two years for an Advanced Diploma course
Does the course cover running a business? This is something we get asked about a lot at the Academy. Running a business is very different to planning a wedding or event. The two things are completely different and both need time dedicated to them. Some courses barely scratch the surface of starting, launching and running your own business. The Academy covers this in detail to a point where you will have written a comprehensive business plan and a full marketing plan on the completion of your course. This is done with the aid of your tutor so you are ready to launch your business upon graduating.
Does the course provider offer Work Experience? Not many providers offer this and even at the Academy we do stipulate that you need to be working to a required standard to receive these opportunities. The student needs to demonstrate their commitment and knowledge as well as taking ownership of their course. Work experience will help cement what is learnt in the course.
What opportunities are there to network with other students? This is another integral part of studying any course and usually the drawback when studying by distance or E Learning. At the Academy we have overcome this by providing a secure online campus where students can talk to other students in a similar way to Facebook. They belong to their own Course Group as well as having access to Academy students across the world. They can chat to tutors as well as other industry professionals who are all part of our network. Can the other course providers offer this for you?
The Academy is currently accepting enrolments for students wishing to commence their course in June 2013. To enrol simply click here to choose your course and then your payment method. Remember you can enrol at anytime during the year!
We are the only training institution in the UK to offer specialised courses in Wedding Styling and Design. Along with our flagship Certificates in Wedding Planning and Event Planning we also offer a Certificate in Event Design, Diploma in Wedding Planning, Styling and Design and Advanced Diploma in Special Event Planning and Design.
Price: £495 or 4 month payment plan available (click here for more details) Format: E LearningCourse Code: WPLEV3 Award: Level 3 Certificate Study Time: 250 HoursRequirements: No Entry Requirements Our Certificate in Wedding Planning is a fully interactive course which uses podcasts, videos, PDF's and Elearning material covering all elements…
Price: £495 - 4 month Payment Plan Available (Click here for more details) Format: E LearningCourse Code: EPLEV3 Award: Level 3 Certificate Study Time: 250 HoursRequirements: No Entry Requirements The Certificate in Event Planning is a fully interactive course which uses podcasts, videos, PDF's and Elearning material covering…
Price: £595 Format: E LearningCourse Code: EDLEV4 Award: Level 4 Certificate Study Time: 300 HoursRequirements: Basic Event Planning Knowledge The Certificate in Event Design is a fully interactive course which uses podcasts, videos, PDF's and Elearning material covering all elements from understanding the principles of design to…
Price: £795 - 4 & 10 month payment plan available Format: E LearningCourse Code: WPSDLEV4 Award: Level 4 Diploma Study Time: 350 HoursRequirements: No Entry Requirements The Diploma in Wedding Planning, Styling and Design is a fully interactive course which uses podcasts, videos, PDF's and Elearning material covering all…
Price: £995 Format: E LearningCourse Code: ADVSPEPLEV4 Award: Level 4 Diploma Study Time: 450 HoursRequirements: No Entry Requirements The Advanced Diploma in Special Event Planning and Design is a fully interactive course which uses podcasts, videos, PDF's and Elearning material covering all elements in planning, managing, designing…
Price: £995 - 4 and 10 month payment plan available Format: E LearningCourse Code: WDMASLEV4 Award: Level 4 Diploma Study Time: 350 HoursRequirements: 2 Years+ Industry Experience Sasha Souza is one of the most acclaimed event designers in the world and we are proud to announce the launch of her first course, Signature Sasha: Certified Wedding Designer…
How are your courses offered?
All our courses are offered through our interactive E Learning Virtual Campus. This allows us to use tools such as online chat, podcasts, video tutorials to give the illusion of being in a classroom, but all from the comfort of your armchair. In a world where everyone is time poor this flexible method of delivery allows you to study in your own time at your own pace.
Do we have tutors and how do we contact them?
Yes each student has a tutor which is allocated to them upon enrolment. This tutor will work with you throughout your course and be there to help you every step of the way by keeping you motivated, answering your queries and giving you an insight into the world of weddings and events from a professional point of view. They can be contacted through our office number, through the virtual campus or via email.
Are the tutors from within the industry?
Yes. All our tutors have had a minimum of 3 years experience within the wedding and event industry and although the academy itself is dedicated to training and delivering educational courses many of the tutors still run their own wedding planning business so can give you a very real picture of how things work in this industry.
Is the course accredited?
Please see our Accreditation Page for more details
How long does one of your courses take?
Our courses are self-paced. This means that you can study them with the time you have available. We find that this approach enables people with busy schedules to still commit to study. Generally we find that someone who is working full-time and studying our Certificate course part-time will complete it within 6-9 months. If you choose to study the Diploma course part-time it should take between 9-12 months and the Advanced Diploma 12-18 months. However these are just guidelines. We encourage students to complete our courses within two years and we are here to support you to do that.
Many Academy students like to work at their own pace at a time and place that suits them. However, there are also many students who have a set time period that is much shorter with a goal of launching their business within the next 4-6 months. This type of study requires more structure and guidance from our tutors, which is why we have launched our Fast Track Flexible Study Program.
To enrol on the Fast Track Flexible Study Program all you need to do is click the Fast Track option on the enrolment form, and we will do the rest. To choose your Course and enrol click here. Alternatively if you want to find out more about how Fast Track can work for you speak to our Course Consultant, Zoe McKeown, on 0845 313 6023