Frequently Asked Questions


In order to become a fully qualified gemologist with AIGS, you need to attain a full Accredited Gemologist (A.G.) qualification, which is awarded upon successful completion of the following four pre-requisite modules:

  • E102: Gem Identification (3 months)
  • E301: Synthetic and Treated Gem Identification (1 month)
  • E103: Diamond Grading and Pricing (1 month)
  • E201: Color Stone Grading and Pricing (1 month)

Almost. The only restriction is that Gem Identification - or an equivalent foundation-level gemological course at another institution, such as Gem-A’s Foundation Diploma - must be taken before Synthetic and Treated Gem Identification can be attempted.

Usually we request that students finish all four modules within a twelve-month period. However, we understand that unexpected personal, financial or medical circumstances can make this difficult - especially for those coming to Thailand to study from abroad - so we try to take a student’s personal situation into account when this deadline is not met.

Yes. We find that Colored Stone Grading and Pricing is popular for those who do not want to go too deep into scientific fundamentals taught in the most full gemological programs. Conversely, Synthetic and Treated Gem Identification tends to be popular with students who already have a full gemological qualification elsewhere (FGA, GG, etc.), as this very advanced and technical course is generally regarded as being the best of its kind.

As of 2016, the price of a full Accredited Gemologist (A.G.) diploma will be US$11,000. This is comparable with the price of an F.G.A. at Gem-A, and around half the price of a GIA G.G.
The individual four units are priced as follows: Gem Identification (US$5,000), Synthetic and Treated Gem Identification (US$3,000), Colored Stone Grading and Pricing (US$2,500) and Diamond Grading and Pricing (US$2,000).

All of our teaching staff are qualified gemologists, as they possess either a G.G. and/or our own A.G. In addition, all of our instructors are active within the industry outside of academia, either as gem traders, lab gemologists or jewelry designers.

As per the course title, this course is centered around the inclusion-based visual detection of synthetic and enhanced gemstones. Some basic theoretical background with regards to the apparatus, procedures and chemistry involved will be included within the notes, but the practical side will be based around visual identification only.
If you are interested in learning hands-on gem enhancement techniques - especially with regards to the heat treatment of rubies and sapphires - we recommend the Bangkok-based course run by a long-time friend of AIGS, Ted Themelis.

While our gemological and design departments are part of the same organization and contained within the same building, they have, academically speaking, almost no overlap in terms their content.
While those looking to become gemologists or loose stone merchants are unlikely to have much need for jewelry design, the reverse is certainly not true, However, that said, a full A.G. diploma would probably be excessive for someone looking to force a career exclusively in jewelry design, so in such circumstances we would recommend a shorter course such as Gem Identification (3 months), Colored Stone Grading and Pricing (1 month) or Introduction to Gemology (1 week), depending on your schedule and/or budget. This is, of course, in addition to our specialist jewelry design courses.

Q. Do your gemological or jewelry design courses have any entry requirements in terms of qualifications?

 

Aside from the pre-requisite mentioned for Synthetic and Treated Gem Identification already discussed, our courses do not necessitate applicants to have achieved any specific qualifications.
However, for non-native English speakers - that is to say, students from outside the UK, US, Canada, Australia, South Africa and New Zealand - we will usually require certain TOEIC, CELTA or IELTS standards to have been met. This is discussed in more detail on our Application Guidelines page  (http://www.aigsthailand.com/AIGS-Registeration-Guidelines-EN).

From time-to-time, AIGS offers “Early Bird” discounts for students who are able to enroll, and pay, several months in advance and, when such an offer is applicable, a notification will be added to that course’s page on this website to that effect. In addition, groups of ten or more are also eligible for a discount. Please contact the AIGS registrar (registrar@aigsthailand.com) for more details.
We also have a scholarship scheme for exceptional applicants. For more information about AIGS scholarships, please go to the Scholarship page.

No, the Introduction to Gemology course is only for those who only want a very basic gemological foundation - such as the situation described for a jewelry designer in the answer above - or for those who have not yet decided whether or not they want to commit to a full gemological qualification. Everything included within the Introduction to Gemology course would be covered again, and with more detail, in the Gem Identification unit of the full A.G. diploma.

Applications for any AIGS course can be made on our Registration page (http://www.aigsthailand.com/Student-Register/en). However, please note that a guaranteed seat on a course can only be offered once full payment has been received by AIGS.

Information regarding the various available methods of payment - as well as a description of our refunds policy - can be found on our Payment page (http://www.aigsthailand.com/Payment-Information).

No, but we can assist students in finding nearby accommodation. In fact, the Jewelry Trade Center building itself has a residential section that some of our students choose to reside in, as well as a choice from many hotels, serviced apartments and hostels on Silom Road, Sathorn Road or along the riverfront.