Choosing An Online Learning Style

By Richard Dubé
May 06, 2021

When choosing an online course or program, there are two main formats: synchronous or asynchronous. The Siebel Institute offers both online learning environments (in addition to in-person education, of course). Understanding the differences can help find what works best for your educational needs and goals. 

There is no “better” option. Both are focused on you, the student. Let’s compare the two. 

Synchronous or Tutored   Asynchronous or Open 
100% online. No travel required.  100% online. No travel required. 
Enrollment on specific dates.  Enrollment throughout the year. 
eLearning platform accessible 24/7.  eLearning platform accessible 24/7. 
Student progresses at their own pace within specified deadlines.  Student moves independently through the coursework. 
Learner receives support from an industry expert via video chats and thorough feedback on submitted assessments.  Industry expert monitor always available to answer questions. 
Best for students looking for the opportunity to engage with tutors and classmates.  Best for students with limited time and willing to work with minimal coaching


Synchronous or Tutored Courses 

At Siebel, synchronous courses are also called “tutored courses.” The acquired depth of knowledge is similar to the traditional, in-person education experience. 

 An industry expert will mentor students. Experts engage with the class proactively to discuss the material using video or instant messaging-type chat sessions and support individual needs via e-mail. 

 These courses/modules typically take up to 11 weeks. Comprehension is evaluated by a mix of auto-graded self-assessments and mentored quizzes, which are typed and submitted for review.  

 This learning environment suits students that thrive on interaction and feedback. 

 Tutored educational choices to consider include: 


Asynchronous or Open Sessions 

Students enrolling in an open session will still get the benefit of a world-class brewing education — but in a more flexible format. Asynchronous learning means the students are “out of sync” with other learners. All are completing the coursework in their respective timeframe. 

 At Siebel, students can enroll in open sessions throughout the year. This means additional flexibility. Once enrolled, learners have a set time to complete the coursework. Typically, this is about five weeks for the WBA Fundamentals of Brewing Technology course or 10 days for any of the WBA Specialized Lectures. Comprehension can be evaluated by an auto-graded self-assessment 

 Open session courses are managed by a monitor, who is an industry expert in the course material. The monitor is always available when the student needs help or clarification. 

 Open sessions to consider: 


Choose Your Path to Brewing Education Excellence  

No matter what learning approach suits you best, we know brewers and brewing staff will find an educational choice that is perfect for them at the Siebel Institute. We have been dedicated to brewing education for 150 years, and offering online education for more than 18 years. Online educational choices range from entry to advanced-level.  

 Our online and on-campus content was developed, and is constantly reviewed, by more than 30 industry expertsPlus, the eLearning web-based platform was recently upgraded to offer an enhanced educational experience that is close to being with us in Chicago.  

 We can work with you one-on-one to find the best option for you, and learning environment that works for your situation. 


Any questions? Feel free to contact us at