Foundation & General Certificate - Support FAQ

Find out all about exam formats, technical requirements and rules

Foundation & General Certificate Exams

If you experience any issues during your Foundation and/or General Certificate exam, please contact our examination platform, TestReach, to support you in the first instance: support@testreach.com 

The Foundations of Brewing and Distilling, and General Certificate in Brewing, Distilling, Packaging, Malting and Cider Making are all multiple choice examinations that are assessed in an online proctored session on the IBD Examination Platform.

Candidate should note that multiple choice questions can include multiple answers. Questions will indicate if multiple responses are required.

All candidates will be given a 15 minute window before the examination begins. This window is used to allow candidates to check their set-up, complete a system check, check ID and confirm with a proctor that they are ready to begin their examination.

March and October Examination Sessions


Number of Multiple Choice Questions

Duration of Examination



120 minutes

General Certificate


120 minutes

Upcoming Foundation and General Certificate Exams

 General Certificate in Brewing  22 March 2024  16 October 2024
 General Certificate in (Spanish)  22 March 2024  16 October 2024
 General Certificate in Distilling  20 March 2024 17 October 2024 
 Foundation in Brewing 21 March 2024  15 October 2024 
 Foundations of Distilling 21 March 2024  15 October 2024 
 General Certificate in Packaging - Spirits 19 March 2024  22 October 2024 
 General Certificate in Packaging - Beer 19 March 2024  22 October 2024 
General Certificate in Cider Making  19 March 2024  23 October 2024 
General Certificate in Malting  19 March 2024  23 October 2024 


Candidates’ exam time range will be predetermined by their registered location.

No, all of our General Certificate and Foundation level examinations are online.

Candidates can download the TestReach app here. Candidates will also receive this information from the Examination Board 4-6 weeks before the exam with additional information on how to confirm your attendance by scheduling your exam time slot.

The examination is an online proctored session, therefore the examination can be taken in a location convenient to you. It is important that candidates think about their environment when deciding where to take the examination. All candidates must ensure they take their examination under exam conditions so candidates must ensure they choose their environment wisely.

Please note that all candidates must read and adhere to the information noted IBD Examination Regulations document as all candidates must comply with the rules stated within the document, regardless of examination location.  

  • Laptop / computer with 4GB of available memory. The TestReach app will not work on phones, chrome books, or ipads/tablets. We cannot guarantee service on touchscreen devices as some devices might be incompatible with the app. We recommend that candidates source a non-touchscreen device for their exams.
  • A Windows v7.0+ or Mac10.10+ operating systems. MacOS BigSur users need to upgrade to 11.3+
  • Intel Core i3 (or equivalent)
  • A working webcam, microphone and speakers
  • Minimum candidate internet speed of 2 Mbps or higher
  • Recommended screen size of at least 13″ and a resolution of 1024 x 768.

Immediately prior to the examination:

If candidates are unable to access the internet or are aware of issues with their connection immediately prior to the examination they must apply for a mitigating circumstances claim directly to the IBD Exam Policies

On the day of the examination:

If candidates experience issues with access to the internet during the examination they should work with the proctor in the first instance, to see if the issues can be resolved. If it is not possible to resolve the issues candidates must submit a mitigating circumstances claim directly to the IBD Exam Policies

Please read our Deferral Policy for full information on changing your exam date and contact examinationboard@ibd.org.uk to put in your request.

Full guidance for what to do if you experience any problems during your exam is contained in the joining instructions that will be emailed to you before the exam date.

In most cases, you will be able to continue with your exam once you have regained your connection and you may be able to communicate with your proctor via the chat box.  However, if the loss of connectivity is longer than the scheduled exam time or you are unable to complete the exam then please follow the guidance noted in the IBD Mitigation policy Exam Policies. If there are any issues candidates must submit a mitigation claim and IBD will look into all claims on a case by case basis.

Should you be more than 15 minutes late for your examination your exam time will lapse, and you will forfeit the exam. In the event that you are experiencing technical issues that the TestReach support team are aware of, they will continue to assist you as much as possible and allow time for this.

Yes, there are strict rules that must be followed. These are detailed in the IBD Examination Regulations Exam Policies

No. No papers, notepads, notes etc, are allowed on your desk when taking the exam. As part of the checks by the proctor, candidates will be asked to move their camera to show that your desk and surrounding area is clear and there are no prohibited items present.

Yes, you will have access to an online calculator in the TestReach proctoring system, alternatively you are permitted to have a non-programmable calculator with you. You will be required to show this to your online proctor at the start of your exam.

On the day of your examination, you must:

  • Bring Identification – On the day of the examination you will be required to show a government issued photo ID to the proctor via webcam. Acceptable forms of identification include: Driving License, Passport or Government issued photo identification card.

Your identification must be in date. Expired ID will not be accepted.

No other forms of ID will be accepted.

  • Username and password – You must ensure you have your username and password ready to log in at your start time. If you cannot remember these you must contact the IBD BEFORE the day of your examination so these can be re-sent to you.
  • Login to Portal – Login into the IBD Examination Portal, TestReach and connect with the online proctor.

Yes. All the online proctored exams are recorded for marking and moderation quality purposes.

If a candidate requires a Comfort Break they must contact the proctor as the validation checks will need to be re-confirmed before the exam can continue.

For full details please also refer to the Examination Guidelines Exam Policies


All parts of the syllabus may be covered in the examination questions. Questions will cover the breadth and depth of the syllabus so candidates are recommended to cover all aspects as part of their revision preparation.

Exams Results Publication Dates

The IBD Examination Board complete a thorough series of procedures and quality assurance checks to ensure accuracy in the evaluation of your exam.

The IBD aims to release candidate results approximately 4 weeks from the date of the last examination.

You will be notified by email once your results are available.

All results are published in a candidate’s MyIBD account.

All candidates will be sent an email confirming when the results have been published. The email will explain how to access results through your MyIBD account.


Distinction: 90% or more

Credit: 80%- 89%

Pass: 66%- 79%

Fail: 65% or less


Any candidate who fails to meet the minimum passing grade and wishes to take the assessment again is required to register via the IBD website (www.ibd.org.uk) to book a new examination. Candidates must check the website for details of when the next registration window will open. Resits are not permitted.

The Examination Board do not offer any feedback to candidates, only the grades. We can recommend, however, that the candidate goes back through their scores in the practice tests in the online learning materials and see how they scored in those, as these should be able to give the candidates some insights.

Formal feedback is something that the Examination Board are reviewing for the future but are unable to offer at this stage.


IBD provides certification via a secure digital platform.  Once the results are published and uploaded to this platform, you will receive log in details and guidance to access your certificate. 

The certificates can be viewed by any third party that you give access to for verification.

Learning Material Access

All our learning material is hosted online via Moodle. To access your specific exam material, visit https://learn.ibd.org.uk. Once on this new page, click on the image of the computer or select the link.

This will take you to the login page where you can gain access to your learning material.  The login instruction would have been sent when you purchased the exam.

When you have logged in, there will be a menu bar displaying learning material that is available to you.

After you have selected the qualification that you are preparing for, you will arrive at the course home screen.

All our courses are split into units.

Each unit will have a list of lessons followed by a multiple-choice quiz at the end of the unit to test you on what you have just learned, so you can assess your knowledge step by step.

Candidates retain access to the learning materials for 90 days after the date of the examination.