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Letter to the Editor of the Australian Gemmologist

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padparashah

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Date: 3/3/2007 3:38:01 PM
Author: adamasgem


Date: 3/3/2007 3:11:54 PM
Author: strmrdr
As for the lowered standards that is the trend in education in the US all over not just GIA.
Tell me about it.. I know all too well from limited teaching at a local university. Needless to say, the adminstration was not too pleased with me when the highest grade I gave in a class was B-, to one student who tried, and the rest got C's and D's.

The dept head said I couldn't give fill in the blank questions, and had to use only true/false and multiple choice questions on exams.

I had more than one student who didn't even try to answer a true/false question.

5 out of an 11 student class couldn't conceptually define the sine of a right triangle, after having been given a handout on the elementary trigonometry of a right triangle, and were told they had to understand sines, cosines, and tangents conceptually, to understand the basic laws of optics (Snell's law and Freznel Reflectivity) being taught, so they could understand how types of refractometers worked.

I was in the adjunct professors office, when a collegue teaching astronomy was wasting time having to explain to a student in his class the difference between the diameter and the radius of a circle.

PS.. I wasn't teaching at MIT
17.gif
Dear Storm,

Well apparently i feel that is the trend everywhere .
England , Asia .... times have changed ....traditions have changed .....
Even the recent chinese new year in singapore , the mood is less traditional ....
The world is changing so fast ...not just education
There's more and more shocking news nowadays ....It goes with the Changes ....

When my dad told me that in 1976 he had to do a written exam for the GG ....and remember all the B stones chart as well ..
i was quite well at first impressed ....but then later on i wondered so what .....
Does it help you ultimately in this profession , at least in a commercial sense ?
Do you think that if you were to scream out to the consumer and say you are the best GG and that you have so much scientific and technical knowledge to boast about .......or even say you are a scientist !!
well ....SO WHAT ?
DOES IT HELP YOU SUCCEED IN THIS TRADE ?

I was working for Tiffany & co 2 yrs ago in singapore straight after i returned from USA and i also worked with another local retail company that had many chain stores ....i learned that to really be able to sell something to the consumer ....
Its really about the best approach ......It seems the technical approach is not the best at least from what i saw ....
The emotional approach is better .... and that's something you cannot buy with a degree but experience polished over the years ......like being street smart !!
More scientific data breeds more doubts and mind you , consumers dont really trust you even if you say you are the best gemologist ....becos ultimately you are trying to sell them something ...they know it.
But being a gemologist does at least give them an impression that you do know more than the average salesperson ....
Ultimately its about trust , they dont trust you .....thats it .

I think GIA knows the changes taking place and thats why they have refined the education materials to include salesmanship as an important module of the GG . They didnt wanna churn out technical robots .....
Though there isnt the written exam anymore at the end , and the need to know the B stones well , everyfriday week in week out , we have a test and the questions are 30% similar cos its really the fundamentals they want drilled in our head .
And looking back i felt that it's been really practical .....cos we spent 80% of our diploma doing practical .
And thats precisely why i decided not to do the FGA ....its not practical but theoretical .
Most importantly the tradition of the 20 stones exam at GIA . for resident students we have only 4 hrs and no toilet breaks in between to complete it.
In my class of 18 , only 6 passed on the 1st try . we had 4 who passed only on the 5th attempt . and finally 2 who didnt make it at all . Among those who passed on the 5th try is my best friend from thailand and mind you he's smart , cos he has a master's degree from san diego University .

The cockiest and most talented student in my class was a very beautiful american all 21 yrs only . She's always the 1st to finish all her practical and she always aces the tests as well ....She did about 6000 coloured stones identification compared to the class average of 3500 ....She was soooooo confident ....you could just sense the aura . Like the popular gal u see in the movies ...She could even sight ID stones with incredible accuarcy though GIA always discouraged it .

Guess what , shockingly ,in the 20"s she got stuck on a synthetic alexandrite and made a wrong call .
She only passed on the second try .....
No matter how you look at it , i had an awesome education , met really interesting people , and yes the famous 20 stones , it is really not easy at all ......GIA knows that and makes sure you have to really know your fundamentals ....
I think that is most important ......

So my point is that loosening a little to refine things may not be bad at all .
We have to move with the times .

warmest regards , dave
 

padparashah

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Date: 3/3/2007 11:27:57 AM
Author: Garry H (Cut Nut)

Date: 3/3/2007 10:14:17 AM
Author: padparashah



Date: 3/3/2007 5:22:50 AM
Author: Garry H (Cut Nut)




Date: 3/3/2007 4:09:55 AM
Author: padparashah
Dear Gary,

I have a GIA cert which is graded Excellent in Cut as well as Polish and symmetry.

Its 59% table 62.2% depth 41.0 pavilion angle and 35.5 crown angle.

The HCA you have created only returned a Good on all grades .

I am not sure what to comment .

Is GIA standards Flawed or The HCA is Flawed .

Thank you for your reply.

warmest regards , dave
Pad read the article linked from the first page and make your own conclusions.
We are dissapointed with GIA''s grading system.

But HCA needs to be re thought because it is a mono (single eyed) based. Two eyes do not see as much table leakage as one - so your stone should be around HCA 2-2.5 and not 4 ish because of that reason.

A stone like yours can benefit from a little painting (another big hot topic here abouts) from my experiance. Perhaps it is?
Dear Garry ,

What do you mean by painting ? I dont get you on this , pls explain .

Thank you for being honest about the HCA needing a serious rethink, In fact for accuracy sake and the benefit of the millions who might have tried the HCA , you should pull out the HCA . What purpose does it serve if it is not accurate ?

I have tried my level best to go through every article , It seems the GIA has come in for alot of criticism.
Some Criticism i feel are personal and done more so because of jealousy.

I Graduated from GIA Headquarters in 2004. I have seen Boyaigian and the whole gang .
Its True , i have my share of criticism as well . I didnt like Boyaigian in the sense that he made everything so expensive
at GIA. It didnt seem non profit to me .
There''s also this dropping of standards for the GG diploma. My Mum and Dad are GG''s as well, and they told me the graduates of yesteryears are much stronger and had to work harder to earn the diploma.
And quite sadly i learned that Distance students who earn the same title of GG had an easier Final Exam then the resident students .As such i felt like me flying all the way to USA was in a sense at first , a waste of money when i can just earn it easily in the comforts of my own home.
And i wasnt surprised when Boyaigian was involved in that scandal and had to quit . I was happy that he left .

Thinking through it all, i think GIA is very smart . Spurring on more people to know more about gemology encourages the power of knowledge to be shared with consumers. That was the main priority.
And GIA understands that you dont have to be an outstanding GG graduate to succeed in the jewelry industry. Because even if you are not a GG , you can be as successful or even more. As such the relaxation of standards to meet the current generation. However , if you wanted to be a great graduate , they had everything for you to be one.Outstanding Lecturers , Fantastic facilities second to none.
The minimum as a GG was that you had to be strong on fundamentals and GIA knows that a GG is really just a starting pt.
And regarding the high fees .... i think well , If it really goes back into research ...i am ok with that. Besides on campus, you really meet alot of people , children of sightholders , you see them all at GIA. You get great Network there.

I am not a very scientific person as any of you here . I think from what i have read , you guys are very smart with all your interesting analysis. I salute you guys for putting in so much creativity and passion .
But i want to say that i would only agree that GIA standards like the Excellent Cut grade is perhaps , it seems statistically , not as strict as the AGS . And the 17 Rbc comparison is not a fair guage as its not enough to assure consistency.
But i feel GIA understands practical wisdom.

So what if you have 11 grades , can you really see the difference between each grade . ? with the naked eye.
I think 5 grades seems more practical , more able to discern easier for the consumer.
For Excellent Cut GIA, i havent come across outrageous proportions as GIA has been accused of .
At the most are 59% tables and 62.5% total depths ....i havent seen a stone with 63% depth ...

The persuit of the greatest CUT is perhaps only worth it if you really can see the difference for sure .
If its just 1 or 2 facet more light return , is it worth to debate over such small differences ?
Can the consumers really see the difference ? Even as a trained professional , i find it not easy to discern when comparing the top cuts ....
And are consumers having their throats cut because of All these marketing of AGS triple 0 and etc ....paying so much much more ......does it justify that they pay so much more for just that little little bit of difference ???
I personally dont think its worth it ....
I still have much faith with the GIA cut grading . I do not think that they need to pull it out .

Thank you for reading and my apologies if i veered off the main topic a little
I suppose i will be getting some very stinging criticism for this letter ....
ha ha ....but its ok because i feel like family with you fellas talking about diamonds ....haha ....
I wont be upset ....i hope to learn something in fact .....pls correct me if i seemed ignorant....


warmest regards, dave
Pad Dave - Marty will join you in the anti Bill B discussion. Personally he was great - i would love to have someone like him running my Company - and GIA is a Company, it just happens to be one that can pay no tax. And they do a lot of good. But Yin and Yang - they unintentionally do bad too, like most lumbering giants.

HCA is a screening tool, and it is tough on vendors because it gives my (old) opinion. but the format could work in a new way. But it is very likely that you will get a nice dianmond if you use it wisely.

I think I need to change the idea of a recomendation. It should just give information. and this can be done. But until I can trust the information (it has my name in it) I can not really change it. I am working on that - but the solution is non obvious. As Marty once said to me, think hard. He did not know that I think hard. He should think hard too as he reads this, and try to understand what I mean.

AGS and GIA try to simplify very complex things. They also rule out many great diamonds - and most diamonds that can be good at some things in some lighting - visa-v- Calendarha''s olde cut with huge flashes of fire -see the Fire thread. It probably would rate a AGS 7 and GIA Good. (Fair-Good in GIA terms = lowest 35% according to Bill B''s comments in India 2 years ago).

Finally let me compliment you. Rarely does someone emerge from GIA training and still have their own unbrainwashed sense. (edit Last sentance removed)
Dear Gary ,

Lastly i would like to say that 5 grades is not enough .
I think they will soon give it 6 grades in total ....thats my prediction

poor-fair-good- V.good-excellent-Ideal

Yes i do think that will be the best in my opinion ...
Because i do think that the word Ideal is really popular in the market now as a minimum
benchmark of a great stone.
The current batch of EX stones , i think i saw some which are really just very good but not the top top .....

Of course i dont know what goes on behind the curtains like you guys have mentioned all the conspiracy theories ....
Its possible .....yeah i think 6 grades will be perfect ....

warmest regards , dave
 

Yuri

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Joined
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Messages
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Date: 3/3/2007 10:14:17 AM
Author: padparashah

Thinking through it all, i think GIA is very smart . Spurring on more people to know more about gemology encourages the power of knowledge to be shared with consumers. That was the main priority.
And GIA understands that you dont have to be an outstanding GG graduate to succeed in the jewelry industry. Because even if you are not a GG , you can be as successful or even more. As such the relaxation of standards to meet the current generation. However , if you wanted to be a great graduate , they had everything for you to be one.Outstanding Lecturers , Fantastic facilities second to none.
The minimum as a GG was that you had to be strong on fundamentals and GIA knows that a GG is really just a starting pt.
And regarding the high fees .... i think well , If it really goes back into research ...i am ok with that. Besides on campus, you really meet alot of people , children of sightholders , you see them all at GIA. You get great Network there.

I am not a very scientific person as any of you here . I think from what i have read , you guys are very smart with all your interesting analysis. I salute you guys for putting in so much creativity and passion .
But i want to say that i would only agree that GIA standards like the Excellent Cut grade is perhaps , it seems statistically , not as strict as the AGS . And the 17 Rbc comparison is not a fair guage as its not enough to assure consistency.
But i feel GIA understands practical wisdom.

So what if you have 11 grades , can you really see the difference between each grade . ? with the naked eye.
I think 5 grades seems more practical , more able to discern easier for the consumer.

warmest regards, dave
Dear Dave,
When you say that 11 cut grades are too much for consumers I feel the same and agree with you.
But you have also learned about 23 color grades, first five of them are not distinguished by nontrained consumer''s eye, and all color grades below M are not even listed in the Rapaport pricelist. Does your consumer require 23 colors of colorless to yellowish diamond?
GIA told you about 11 clarity grades. Only I1 - I3 can influence brilliance, scintillation and fire because all other grades has INVISIBLE characteristics!
And all these color and clarity grades strongly affect diamond''s price.
Did you analize if this system good and clear for the diamond buying public?
 

diagem

Ideal_Rock
Trade
Joined
Oct 21, 2004
Messages
5,096
Date: 3/4/2007 10:10:48 AM
Author: Yuri

Date: 3/3/2007 10:14:17 AM
Author: padparashah

Thinking through it all, i think GIA is very smart . Spurring on more people to know more about gemology encourages the power of knowledge to be shared with consumers. That was the main priority.
And GIA understands that you dont have to be an outstanding GG graduate to succeed in the jewelry industry. Because even if you are not a GG , you can be as successful or even more. As such the relaxation of standards to meet the current generation. However , if you wanted to be a great graduate , they had everything for you to be one.Outstanding Lecturers , Fantastic facilities second to none.
The minimum as a GG was that you had to be strong on fundamentals and GIA knows that a GG is really just a starting pt.
And regarding the high fees .... i think well , If it really goes back into research ...i am ok with that. Besides on campus, you really meet alot of people , children of sightholders , you see them all at GIA. You get great Network there.

I am not a very scientific person as any of you here . I think from what i have read , you guys are very smart with all your interesting analysis. I salute you guys for putting in so much creativity and passion .
But i want to say that i would only agree that GIA standards like the Excellent Cut grade is perhaps , it seems statistically , not as strict as the AGS . And the 17 Rbc comparison is not a fair guage as its not enough to assure consistency.
But i feel GIA understands practical wisdom.

So what if you have 11 grades , can you really see the difference between each grade . ? with the naked eye.
I think 5 grades seems more practical , more able to discern easier for the consumer.

warmest regards, dave
Dear Dave,
When you say that 11 cut grades are too much for consumers I feel the same and agree with you.
But you have also learned about 23 color grades, first five of them are not distinguished by nontrained consumer''s eye, and all color grades below M are not even listed in the Rapaport pricelist. Does your consumer require 23 colors of colorless to yellowish diamond?
GIA told you about 11 clarity grades. Only I1 - I3 can influence brilliance, scintillation and fire because all other grades has INVISIBLE characteristics!
And all these color and clarity grades strongly affect diamond''s price.
Did you analize if this system good and clear for the diamond buying public?
Do you suggest going back to the Wesselton/River days?
And is your concern based on the "Diamond Buying Public"?
 

JohnQuixote

Ideal_Rock
Joined
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Messages
5,212
Date: 3/1/2007 6:38:30 AM
Author: DiaGem

Just came back from testing the DD..., Garry, you are right, it complimented (big-Time) out-of-the-ordinary fancy cuts that I used for testing vs. regular fluo. light used in Diamond/Industry offices.
Its not the 'ideal' light environment for grading Diamond face-up appearances!!!
I did notice It would be a good tool to observe Diamond pattern!!!

I think (not 100% sure yet) I noticed that on off-colored Diamonds the DD brings out the better (artificial) face-up appearance that it would show in 'ambient room lighting'!!! Am I making sense here?

And now for the bad news (unless i am used to my own lighting environment), I think it is definitely the wrong tool-box to determine/grade a color for D-Z graded colored Diamonds. I may be wrong..., but that is what i picked up after a rather quick test!!!!

And I would be surprised to hear that GIA grades Fancy-Colored Diamonds on DD, especialy when these Diamonds are only graded faced-up!!!!!!!!

Diagem, I spent a week with DD recently and your comments mirror my experience.I made color judgments more decisively using a white card and standalone fluorescent lamp, without master stones, than inside the basic DD with masters.This wasn’t surprising, since light inside the DD is reflecting from the gray interior.In fairness to DD it is not a grading tool (although pros are bound to test-drive it that way) but in those terms I agree that the element most clearly seen is the diamond’s contrast pattern.

With regard to use as a “common viewing environment” for displaying cut quality; it’s great for showing someone the differences diffused lighting vs spotlighting have on diamond performance. You can clearly demonstrate how dependent a diamond's appearance is on illumination. The downside I encountered, as previously reported, is that it equalizes performance in some comparisons and can give a false impression in others.
 

JohnQuixote

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Joined
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Messages
5,212
Date: 3/3/2007 10:14:17 AM
Author: padparashah

...

Thank you for reading and my apologies if i veered off the main topic a little
I suppose i will be getting some very stinging criticism for this letter ....
ha ha ....but its ok because i feel like family with you fellas talking about diamonds ....haha ....
I wont be upset ....i hope to learn something in fact .....pls correct me if i seemed ignorant....

warmest regards, dave

Not at all.

Mr. Wong, it’s always good to hear perspective and yours is no exception.Thank you for posting.While there are many threads discussing the cut grading subject there are not as many on the topic of education.I enjoyed your observations and have a few comments.

First, I think no one has made the impact GIA has with regard to gemological education.

I’m impressed with the reach they have in an industry where little is demanded in the way of credentials.The fact that many choose to acquire the GG when it’s not a requirement of employment is a testament to its perceived credibility.It’s bizarre that in many professions there is a uniform test for licensing - for hairdressers and waitresses in some cases - but anyone who wants to be a gemological appraiser, for instance, can hang up a sign and ‘just do it’…(that’s a whole different subject and I’ll leave the soapbox under the bed for now).

My point is that GIA is to be loudly and continuously applauded for setting strong, consistent entry-level educational standards.I can’t comment on the relaxing of those standards, as my studies are current, but I know students completing GG coursework today are learning data that was unavailable 10 years ago.In the diamond diploma program there are numerous recent developments on manufacture and identification of sims-synths. There is also much more material being taught on the assessment of cut quality in round brilliants since cut grading was implemented last year.

While cheering the above, I do think the GG coursework could stand to cover more on gemstone origin and details of manufacture.The fundamentals are critical and students should understand “how” and “why” stones are cut.For example, painting and digging are mystery words, even to many pros.These are brillianteering basics every diamond cutter knows.They are also a part of GIA’s cut grading system but are barely mentioned in the classes.I think an understanding of these and other rough planning decisions driven by weight strategies, visual properties, clarity characteristics, graining and other upstream factors would serve trade members well.I’m fortunate enough to work with a diamond cutter who erases the question marks for me, but many pros don’t have access to these answers.I realize there is not time enough to address all elements of manufacture in the current courses.I would think an additional class devoted soley to the mechanics of colored gemstone faceting and diamond cutting would be wisely added, even if optional.

I’d also like to see some kind of continuing education option for GGs who wish to remain current.I suspect there are those who got the GG 10 or 20 years ago who’d love access to “5 year updates” or something like that…Hey, if it’s offered 5 years from now I’ll be the first one to sign up.
 

RockDoc

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Joined
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Messages
2,509
RE: Updating Gemological expertise.

Those who are interested go to AGS conclaves. Lots of updated presentations on gemological subjects. Many even have GIA lecturers.

Join AGS.. Titleholders have to take yearly exams.

Rockdoc
 

Garry H (Cut Nut)

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Messages
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Date: 3/4/2007 8:41:29 PM
Author: RockDoc

RE: Updating Gemological expertise.

Those who are interested go to AGS conclaves. Lots of updated presentations on gemological subjects. Many even have GIA lecturers.

Join AGS.. Titleholders have to take yearly exams.

Rockdoc
I would love to go Roc - but it is hard to join for us Aliens.
 

Garry H (Cut Nut)

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Date: 3/4/2007 10:10:48 AM
Author: Yuri

Dear Dave,
When you say that 11 cut grades are too much for consumers I feel the same and agree with you.
But you have also learned about 23 color grades, first five of them are not distinguished by nontrained consumer''s eye, and all color grades below M are not even listed in the Rapaport pricelist. Does your consumer require 23 colors of colorless to yellowish diamond?
GIA told you about 11 clarity grades. Only I1 - I3 can influence brilliance, scintillation and fire because all other grades has INVISIBLE characteristics!
And all these color and clarity grades strongly affect diamond''s price.
Did you analize if this system good and clear for the diamond buying public?
As usual Yuri your crystal clear vision and sharp wit cut the flesh away to reveal bone.

I am reading a good book - Ocean Blue Strategy, which is helping me draw many thoughts to focus.

For example - as long as a diamond is eye clean most Pricescopers (who are generally well educated prosumers) they will not pay more than they need too. Y
They say if it is any more than that then it is ''mind clean''.

And the same goes for colour - but the plane is taking oof now!!!!!!!!!
 

Yuri

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Joined
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Messages
28
Re DiaGem: Do you suggest going back to the Wesselton/River days?
And is your concern based on the "Diamond Buying Public"?

DiaGem,
Wesselton/River terms are in the past. Moreover when GIA introduced D-Z color scale they did not change the scale itself, only terms.

My concern mainly about gemological education. If people here feel that we are already out of topic we can start a new thread.

So, 11 years back I was involved in the diamond grading program development in my country. Since that more than 1000 people graduated this course.
Of course we deliver international grading system. After people trained they feel confident with color and clarity grading.
Their next question: How canl we use all this system to build solid business and to add value? The aswer is NOT INCLUDED in the course.

Our graduates know the trade diamond classification and work with end consumers that do not know. After end consumers learn this system they do not automatically translate this system into 1) their choice and 2) their trust.

This is my question to all GG and other shools graduates here: did you learn in the gemology institute how to build business and how to add value?
 

diagem

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Messages
5,096
Date: 3/5/2007 8:01:32 AM
Author: Yuri

Re DiaGem: Do you suggest going back to the Wesselton/River days?
And is your concern based on the ''Diamond Buying Public''?


DiaGem,
Wesselton/River terms are in the past. Moreover when GIA introduced D-Z color scale they did not change the scale itself, only terms.
Terms and they divided the scale to many subdivisions (for example: Top-Wesselton = D-E-F color, etc, etc...)
My concern mainly about gemological education. If people here feel that we are already out of topic we can start a new thread.

So, 11 years back I was involved in the diamond grading program development in my country. Since that more than 1000 people graduated this course.
Of course we deliver international grading system. After people trained they feel confident with color and clarity grading.
Their next question: How canl we use all this system to build solid business and to add value? The aswer is NOT INCLUDED in the course.
You cannot build a business in this industry based on theory..., and that is what GG''s are educated with... THEORY.
Our graduates know the trade diamond classification and work with end consumers that do not know. After end consumers learn this system they do not automatically translate this system into 1) their choice and 2) their trust.

This is my question to all GG and other schools graduates here: did you learn in the gemology institute how to build business and how to add value?
I am not GIA educated and I don''t have any degrees from other Gemological schools..., but in my experience the only way someone can learn how to add value in this business is: Experience and Education (mostly self education based on true live experience!!!!)

If I am not mistaken..., to earn a GG degree, one must learn for +/- 6 months, and GIA teaches you somewhere in the range of a couple of hundred different varieties of Gem Stone material.... (Truthfully, I think after completing the course, you know a bit here and there..., but you are far from being educated enough to jump into the world of Gem manufacturing or trading!!!) am i making sense????
 

Yuri

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Joined
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Messages
28
Date: 3/5/2007 8:29:50 AM
Author: DiaGem


Date: 3/5/2007 8:01:32 AM
Author: Yuri



Their next question: How canl we use all this system to build solid business and to add value? The aswer is NOT INCLUDED in the course.
You cannot build a business in this industry based on theory..., and that is what GG''s are educated with... THEORY.
Our graduates know the trade diamond classification and work with end consumers that do not know. After end consumers learn this system they do not automatically translate this system into 1) their choice and 2) their trust.

This is my question to all GG and other schools graduates here: did you learn in the gemology institute how to build business and how to add value?
I am not GIA educated and I don''t have any degrees from other Gemological schools..., but in my experience the only way someone can learn how to add value in this business is: Experience and Education (mostly self education based on true live experience!!!!)

If I am not mistaken..., to earn a GG degree, one must learn for +/- 6 months, and GIA teaches you somewhere in the range of a couple of hundred different varieties of Gem Stone material.... (Truthfully, I think after completing the course, you know a bit here and there..., but you are far from being educated enough to jump into the world of Gem manufacturing or trading!!!) am i making sense????
I do think that gemological formal education is nesessary. But nesessery is not enough.
Education is a type of information.
Information has one interesting feature:
If one provides information to me I easily deside if I need this information of not.
But I can not deside if I need information that is not provided.
 

diagem

Ideal_Rock
Trade
Joined
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Messages
5,096
Date: 3/5/2007 10:21:46 AM
Author: Yuri

Date: 3/5/2007 8:29:50 AM
Author: DiaGem



Date: 3/5/2007 8:01:32 AM
Author: Yuri




Their next question: How canl we use all this system to build solid business and to add value? The aswer is NOT INCLUDED in the course.
You cannot build a business in this industry based on theory..., and that is what GG''s are educated with... THEORY.
Our graduates know the trade diamond classification and work with end consumers that do not know. After end consumers learn this system they do not automatically translate this system into 1) their choice and 2) their trust.

This is my question to all GG and other schools graduates here: did you learn in the gemology institute how to build business and how to add value?
I am not GIA educated and I don''t have any degrees from other Gemological schools..., but in my experience the only way someone can learn how to add value in this business is: Experience and Education (mostly self education based on true live experience!!!!)

If I am not mistaken..., to earn a GG degree, one must learn for +/- 6 months, and GIA teaches you somewhere in the range of a couple of hundred different varieties of Gem Stone material.... (Truthfully, I think after completing the course, you know a bit here and there..., but you are far from being educated enough to jump into the world of Gem manufacturing or trading!!!) am i making sense????
I do think that gemological formal education is nesessary. But nesessery is not enough.
Education is a type of information.
Information has one interesting feature:
If one provides information to me I easily deside if I need this information of not.
But I can not deside if I need information that is not provided.
A formal gemological education/degree would probably help you land a good job (in the US).
But unfortunately, I know plenty of GG''s that even have NO basic knowledge in the real world of Gem/Diamond trading...., let alone add value to their services!

Honestly, most of the "true" professionals I know in this business have no degree in formal gemological education, but they educated themselves on information (as you call it), and experience on a day to day basis with the (Gem) material itself. What I call "Trial and Error"!

But the GG Certificate hanging on the wall does look good, doesn''t it??

Yuri, you (and others) have the luxury to "decide" if the information provided to you is useful as you are well experienced!!! Some people cant judge if the information they get is good or not!
 

JohnQuixote

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Sep 9, 2004
Messages
5,212
Date: 3/5/2007 8:29:50 AM
Author: DiaGem

Date: 3/5/2007 8:01:32 AM
Author: Yuri


Re DiaGem: Do you suggest going back to the Wesselton/River days?
And is your concern based on the ''Diamond Buying Public''?



DiaGem,
Wesselton/River terms are in the past. Moreover when GIA introduced D-Z color scale they did not change the scale itself, only terms.
Terms and they divided the scale to many subdivisions (for example: Top-Wesselton = D-E-F color, etc, etc...)
My concern mainly about gemological education. If people here feel that we are already out of topic we can start a new thread.

So, 11 years back I was involved in the diamond grading program development in my country. Since that more than 1000 people graduated this course.
Of course we deliver international grading system. After people trained they feel confident with color and clarity grading.
Their next question: How canl we use all this system to build solid business and to add value? The aswer is NOT INCLUDED in the course.
You cannot build a business in this industry based on theory..., and that is what GG''s are educated with... THEORY.
Our graduates know the trade diamond classification and work with end consumers that do not know. After end consumers learn this system they do not automatically translate this system into 1) their choice and 2) their trust.

This is my question to all GG and other schools graduates here: did you learn in the gemology institute how to build business and how to add value?
I am not GIA educated and I don''t have any degrees from other Gemological schools..., but in my experience the only way someone can learn how to add value in this business is: Experience and Education (mostly self education based on true live experience!!!!)

If I am not mistaken..., to earn a GG degree, one must learn for +/- 6 months, and GIA teaches you somewhere in the range of a couple of hundred different varieties of Gem Stone material.... (Truthfully, I think after completing the course, you know a bit here and there..., but you are far from being educated enough to jump into the world of Gem manufacturing or trading!!!) am i making sense????
The basic GG is separated into diamond, colored stone and gem ID coursework. There is an AJP course on sales techniques. GIA just launched new degrees to address business practices more comprehensively, including a Jewelry Business Management program and a Bachelor of Business Administration degree. You can visit their site for an overview.

Your point is good of course. Regardless of information, there is always the matter of theory versus practice. This is why educators student-teach in public schools before being allowed to teach formally, just as internships are required in other professions.

My suggestion above was to add coursework on manufacture, but the best improvement (even if it''s just a fantasy) would be a practical internship in gemstone manufacture, a trading house, grading lab or other business environment suited to the ''track'' the student is on.
 

adamasgem

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
May 23, 2003
Messages
1,338
Date: 3/5/2007 10:21:46 AM
Author: Yuri

I do think that gemological formal education is nesessary. But nesessery is not enough.
Education is a type of information.
Information has one interesting feature:
If one provides information to me I easily deside if I need this information of not.
But I can not deside if I need information that is not provided.
Well stated Yuri...

It almost seems we have three groups here on Pricescope.
1) Merchants
2) Consumers
3) Information providers..

Most consumers here on Pricescope want as much information as possible, to make informed decisions on a high ticket item, much more so than the average consumer who walks into a mall store to make their purchase. They want true "value" and want (need) to know if the merchants representations are valid.

Most merchants here on Pricescope seemingly try to provide what "real" information is available, some more selectively than others, and of course they (all) are motivated to make the sale. Unfortunately, in the rest of the real world, it seems, merchants rely on three factors: "image", "puffery" and "price", giving little "real" information. Some know their product, inside and out. To others, they don''t need to know their product and rely on the information providors.

Information providors are of two types, "evaluators" and "valuators". "Evaluators" provide information on quality (in the case of diamonds, quality sometimes being proportional to rareity and cost) to differing levels of accuracy and depth, much like valuators whose opinons of relative "value" are sometimes pie in the sky, because they haven''t considered the proper market level, or rely on misleading "evaluations", either by blindly accecpting "evaluations" of others without doing their own homework, or using methodologies not well thought through.

In the past, there have been violent swings in the quality and level of education taught to gemologists, sometimes leaning to far to teaching "fluff", as most gemologists wind up being merchants of some form.

GIA has started what maybe a positive trend, in separating the needs of the merchant and gemologist, by starting separate programs..

The overall level of education in the US, has unfortunately, been on a downward spiral, largely due to political corectness, everyone (or everything) has equal capabilities (or qulaities), including diamonds.

Merchants, at every level of the trade have been "taken", so to speak, by those with more "knowledge".

Merchants, for the most part, spend more on advertizing, than on education for their employees.

The internet and the real world, to a greater degree, is a mine field for the consumer.

Even laboratories are on a continual learning curve, some willfully buring their heads in the sand, others trying to keep ahead of the treaters and juicers, and do their own research, while others just print the paper most mass merchandizers want to see.

My hat is off to MSU for their apparent approach in trying to teach the information providers a more thorough understanding of the problems out there, although I don''t know the standards applied, all I can see is a much greater emphasis on the science of it from their published studies.

GIA started off on the right track, but apparently got sidetracked by pandering to what the merchants wanted, looser standards.

We ALL learn something new, every day, sometimes the hard way.

We ALL make mistakes, some admit them and start along another path to the "truth", and then again, some don''t

Remember when Bill Gates said, to paraphrase, "who will ever need more than 640K of memory"

Mazel..
 

strmrdr

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Nov 1, 2003
Messages
23,295
posting this between asthma attacks so if its incomplete please excuse me....

Marty that is a very simplified view of the dynamics of pricescope and while its not wrong its not complete.
Not sure if we should even discuss it in this thread but I don''t think it can be broken down that easily and into that few categories.
Id break it down something like this:

Researchers: "cut group", MSU, AGS, GIA,(some individuals fall into several categories and some fit here at times like Marty, Serg and Yuri)

Educators - out to educate both consumers and the trade: Garry is the most well know example. Paul and Brian are 2 others.

Educators of consumers - Pass the information from the above to consumers. Wink, Jon, John are the 3 examples out of many.

Trade and or specialty Experts: appraisers and vendors (they often fall in other classes as well) - serve consumers in many ways.

Trade posters: trade members who hang out here.

Consumer educators - aka prosumers. consumers who function as educators (I fall in here at times along with others) - Help pass information on to consumers.

Consumer supporters: consumers who are not technologists but provide help and support on the human and emotional side of things as well as technical help. (these are some of the sweetest people on PS) There are too many to list :}

consumer posters - biggest group that are sometimes educators sometimes supporters sometimes just post kewl stuff :}

consumers looking for help.
 

Serg

Ideal_Rock
Trade
Joined
Mar 21, 2002
Messages
2,654
Date: 3/5/2007 12:33:53 PM
Author: strmrdr
posting this between asthma attacks so if its incomplete please excuse me....

Marty that is a very simplified view of the dynamics of pricescope and while its not wrong its not complete.
Not sure if we should even discuss it in this thread but I don''t think it can be broken down that easily and into that few categories.
Id break it down something like this:

Researchers: ''cut group'', MSU, AGS, GIA,(some individuals fall into several categories and some fit here at times like Marty, Serg and Yuri)

Educators - out to educate both consumers and the trade: Garry is the most well know example. Paul and Brian are 2 others.

Educators of consumers - Pass the information from the above to consumers. Wink, Jon, John are the 3 examples out of many.

Trade and or specialty Experts: appraisers and vendors (they often fall in other classes as well) - serve consumers in many ways.

Trade posters: trade members who hang out here.

Consumer educators - aka prosumers. consumers who function as educators (I fall in here at times along with others) - Help pass information on to consumers.

Consumer supporters: consumers who are not technologists but provide help and support on the human and emotional side of things as well as technical help. (these are some of the sweetest people on PS) There are too many to list :}

consumer posters - biggest group that are sometimes educators sometimes supporters sometimes just post kewl stuff :}

consumers looking for help.
Re:Researchers: "cut group", MSU, AGS, GIA,(some individuals fall into several categories and some fit here at times like Marty, Serg and Yuri)

Who is present GIA on Pricescope?
Please clarify it.
 

adamasgem

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
May 23, 2003
Messages
1,338
Date: 3/5/2007 1:44:31 PM
Author: Serg
Re:Researchers: ''cut group'', MSU, AGS, GIA,(some individuals fall into several categories and some fit here at times like Marty, Serg and Yuri)

Who is present GIA on Pricescope?
Please clarify it.
Serg.. so well put, and unfortunate.

BUT, I can assure you, the threads are probably monitored, and quite a bit of what is said probably raises the "management" blood pressure a bit.

There are some good people at GIA who would like to offer their own independent opinions (I know some), but are prevented from doing anything else than "parroting" the party line, and teaching what they are told to teach, and how to teach it. It is the culture created by BB, and hopefully will change, probably very very slowly over time.

Very little academic feedom there, IMHO.

Dissenters, internally or externally, have often been sent off to "Siberia", if you know what I mean, because there is way too much money involved for anyone internally to cast the shadow of doubt on the "worlds'' greatest authority (TM)".
 

adamasgem

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
May 23, 2003
Messages
1,338
Date: 3/4/2007 10:10:48 AM
Author: Yuri

GIA told you about 11 clarity grades. Only I1 - I3 can influence brilliance, scintillation and fire because all other grades has INVISIBLE characteristics!
Yuri.. Unfortunately, what once was, is no longer.. Grade creep is well documented, some justified, some not.

What the lab did (and still probably does) versus what is (or has been) taught, can be two different things.

There was sometimes a disconnect between the two.

A classic example, probably still practiced in the lab, was that GIA students were once taught to "give the Benefit of the Doubt" to the stone. Skews the distribution of grades a bit..
 

Yuri

Rough_Rock
Joined
Jun 17, 2003
Messages
28
Date: 3/5/2007 12:33:53 PM
Author: strmrdr
posting this between asthma attacks so if its incomplete please excuse me....

Marty that is a very simplified view of the dynamics of pricescope and while its not wrong its not complete.
Not sure if we should even discuss it in this thread but I don''t think it can be broken down that easily and into that few categories.
Id break it down something like this:

Researchers: ''cut group'', MSU, AGS, GIA,(some individuals fall into several categories and some fit here at times like Marty, Serg and Yuri)

Educators - out to educate both consumers and the trade: Garry is the most well know example. Paul and Brian are 2 others.

Educators of consumers - Pass the information from the above to consumers. Wink, Jon, John are the 3 examples out of many.

Trade and or specialty Experts: appraisers and vendors (they often fall in other classes as well) - serve consumers in many ways.

Trade posters: trade members who hang out here.

Consumer educators - aka prosumers. consumers who function as educators (I fall in here at times along with others) - Help pass information on to consumers.

Consumer supporters: consumers who are not technologists but provide help and support on the human and emotional side of things as well as technical help. (these are some of the sweetest people on PS) There are too many to list :}

consumer posters - biggest group that are sometimes educators sometimes supporters sometimes just post kewl stuff :}

consumers looking for help.
Personally I feel that the most valuable part is consumers that are able to express their needs, tastes and preferences.

The point is that an average gemology instructor rarely contacts with end consumers and rarely visits jewellery stores.
He beliewes that he (or she) is higher then a student or graduate student.
An average gemologist with diploma believes that he (or she) is higher then a diamond sales person.
A sales person believes then he (or she) is higher then a consumer.
But many consumers are more higher then gemology instructors.
Diamond industry is consumer driven but needs somebody to provide information what is better diamond and what is worse.
At this stage gemolgists think: We have so much knowledge that can understand this issue better than anybody else. Then we will educate manufacturers, trade and buying public what is good and what is bad. But they know how to speak and do not know how to listen.

I can recall one story. Two years back two GIA representatives visited many diamond cutting centers with a world trip. At the every cutting center they say: "We bring good news for you cutters. We came up with the international standard in diamond cut quality. Here is 65 million proportion combination database with underlying metrics and 70 000 human observation. Now you can learn how to properly cut and polish diamonds".
What is anecdotical that they (to the best of my knowledge) newer cut diamonds. They come from the country where maybe 50 diamond cutters left and proclaim their gospel in my country that has 10 000 diamond cutters and every year produces polished diamonds for $1 000 000 000. Then they left for India where 800 000 cutters cut 9 out of 10 diamonds in the world. GIA positiones its new system as the International standard and is willing to teach all cutters in the world how to properly polish. That is why I feel that the GIA system need to be correct.
 

diagem

Ideal_Rock
Trade
Joined
Oct 21, 2004
Messages
5,096
Date: 3/5/2007 2:48:34 PM
Author: Yuri
Personally I feel that the most valuable part is consumers that are able to express their needs, tastes and preferences.

The point is that an average gemology instructor rarely contacts with end consumers and rarely visits jewellery stores.
He beliewes that he (or she) is higher then a student or graduate student.
An average gemologist with diploma believes that he (or she) is higher then a diamond sales person.
A sales person believes then he (or she) is higher then a consumer.
But many consumers are more higher then gemology instructors.
Diamond industry is consumer driven but needs somebody to provide information what is better diamond and what is worse.
At this stage gemolgists think: We have so much knowledge that can understand this issue better than anybody else. Then we will educate manufacturers, trade and buying public what is good and what is bad. But they know how to speak and do not know how to listen.

I can recall one story. Two years back two GIA representatives visited many diamond cutting centers with a world trip. At the every cutting center they say: ''We bring good news for you cutters. We came up with the international standard in diamond cut quality. Here is 65 million proportion combination database with underlying metrics and 70 000 human observation. Now you can learn how to properly cut and polish diamonds''.
What is anecdotical that they (to the best of my knowledge) newer cut diamonds. They come from the country where maybe 50 diamond cutters left and proclaim their gospel in my country that has 10 000 diamond cutters and every year produces polished diamonds for $1 000 000 000. Then they left for India where 800 000 cutters cut 9 out of 10 diamonds in the world. GIA positiones its new system as the International standard and is willing to teach all cutters in the world how to properly polish. That is why I feel that the GIA system need to be correct.
Only the GIA???
What is the correct system? Who knows the correct system? (It seems to me that the "correct system keeps changing!!)
I assume you are talking in regards to Round Shape Diamonds
What about Fancies (shapes)? Can anyone GIA or anyone else come and teach cutters how to properly SHAPE, cut and polish Fancy Shapes?
 

strmrdr

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Nov 1, 2003
Messages
23,295
Good question serg,
both gia and ags are indirectly represented and I probably shouldn''t have included them.
But they are 2 large sources of research here just not directly.
 

strmrdr

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Nov 1, 2003
Messages
23,295
Date: 3/5/2007 2:48:34 PM
Author: Yuri
Personally I feel that the most valuable part is consumers that are able to express their needs, tastes and preferences.

The point is that an average gemology instructor rarely contacts with end consumers and rarely visits jewellery stores.
He beliewes that he (or she) is higher then a student or graduate student.
An average gemologist with diploma believes that he (or she) is higher then a diamond sales person.
A sales person believes then he (or she) is higher then a consumer.
But many consumers are more higher then gemology instructors.
Diamond industry is consumer driven but needs somebody to provide information what is better diamond and what is worse.
At this stage gemolgists think: We have so much knowledge that can understand this issue better than anybody else. Then we will educate manufacturers, trade and buying public what is good and what is bad. But they know how to speak and do not know how to listen.

I can recall one story. Two years back two GIA representatives visited many diamond cutting centers with a world trip. At the every cutting center they say: ''We bring good news for you cutters. We came up with the international standard in diamond cut quality. Here is 65 million proportion combination database with underlying metrics and 70 000 human observation. Now you can learn how to properly cut and polish diamonds''.
What is anecdotical that they (to the best of my knowledge) newer cut diamonds. They come from the country where maybe 50 diamond cutters left and proclaim their gospel in my country that has 10 000 diamond cutters and every year produces polished diamonds for $1 000 000 000. Then they left for India where 800 000 cutters cut 9 out of 10 diamonds in the world. GIA positiones its new system as the International standard and is willing to teach all cutters in the world how to properly polish. That is why I feel that the GIA system need to be correct.
Good points and well said.
"But they know how to speak and do not know how to listen."
That is how many consumers feel when dealing with many in the trade.
 

Yuri

Rough_Rock
Joined
Jun 17, 2003
Messages
28
Date: 3/5/2007 3:12:36 PM
Author: DiaGem
What is the correct system? Who knows the correct system? (It seems to me that the ''correct system keeps changing!!)
I assume you are talking in regards to Round Shape Diamonds
What about Fancies (shapes)? Can anyone GIA or anyone else come and teach cutters how to properly SHAPE, cut and polish Fancy Shapes?
Yes the definition of ''correct system'' is changing and system is changing together with the product itself and together with level of our understanding of the product. All life is constantly changing. Diamond is not forever because old cut diamonds became obsolete and modern GIA Ex will became obsolete in future.

Just three remarks.
1) If a cutter know how to cut a diamond, fulfil all consumer''s dreams and make him (of her) happy then there is no need to teach this cutter.

2) There were three unprooved paradigmas in the diamond industry:
- The best shape is round. All other shapes should be discounted bacause of less brilliance.
- The best proportion combination is Tolkowsky. Any deviation = penalty
- The better symmetry the better brilliance and fire.
Do you think these statements are correct?

3) Assume that there will be a technology to compare optics of different diamond shapes. Let say that a 0,50 ct princess cut diamond has 80% of brilliance of a 0,50 ct rbc but another 3 ct princess cut diamond has 110% of brilliance of a 3 ct round. Different sizes, facet arrangements, symmetry deviations can be comparable by its optical output as well. Can this thechnology bring a fresh opportunity to the industry and to consumers?
 

diagem

Ideal_Rock
Trade
Joined
Oct 21, 2004
Messages
5,096
Date: 3/5/2007 4:28:39 PM
Author: Yuri

Date: 3/5/2007 3:12:36 PM
Author: DiaGem
What is the correct system? Who knows the correct system? (It seems to me that the ''correct system keeps changing!!)
I assume you are talking in regards to Round Shape Diamonds
What about Fancies (shapes)? Can anyone GIA or anyone else come and teach cutters how to properly SHAPE, cut and polish Fancy Shapes?
Yes the definition of ''correct system'' is changing and system is changing together with the product itself and together with level of our understanding of the product. All life is constantly changing. Diamond is not forever because old cut diamonds became obsolete and modern GIA Ex will became obsolete in future.

Just three remarks.
1) If a cutter know how to cut a diamond, fulfil all consumer''s dreams and make him (of her) happy then there is no need to teach this cutter.

2) There were three unprooved paradigmas in the diamond industry:
- The best shape is round. All other shapes should be discounted bacause of less brilliance. Nope, Brilliance is not always the measure of value!!
Plus the simple fact that round is the easiest!!!

- The best proportion combination is Tolkowsky. Any deviation = penalty Again, depends on the preference of that particular individual who is looking at the stone, penalties are in soccer!!!
- The better symmetry the better brilliance and fire. The better the symmetry, the more accurate the brilliance and fire..., it doesn''t mean its better!
Do you think these statements are correct?

3) Assume that there will be a technology to compare optics of different diamond shapes. Let say that a 0,50 ct princess cut diamond has 80% of brilliance of a 0,50 ct rbc but another 3 ct princess cut diamond has 110% of brilliance of a 3 ct round. Different sizes, facet arrangements, symmetry deviations can be comparable by its optical output as well. Can this thechnology bring a fresh opportunity to the industry and to consumers? Again, assuming you want to measure the value of a Diamond based on max. brilliance!!!
 

padparashah

Rough_Rock
Joined
Mar 2, 2007
Messages
9
Date: 3/5/2007 8:29:50 AM
Author: DiaGem

Date: 3/5/2007 8:01:32 AM
Author: Yuri


Re DiaGem: Do you suggest going back to the Wesselton/River days?
And is your concern based on the ''Diamond Buying Public''?



DiaGem,
Wesselton/River terms are in the past. Moreover when GIA introduced D-Z color scale they did not change the scale itself, only terms.
Terms and they divided the scale to many subdivisions (for example: Top-Wesselton = D-E-F color, etc, etc...)
My concern mainly about gemological education. If people here feel that we are already out of topic we can start a new thread.

So, 11 years back I was involved in the diamond grading program development in my country. Since that more than 1000 people graduated this course.
Of course we deliver international grading system. After people trained they feel confident with color and clarity grading.
Their next question: How canl we use all this system to build solid business and to add value? The aswer is NOT INCLUDED in the course.
You cannot build a business in this industry based on theory..., and that is what GG''s are educated with... THEORY.
Our graduates know the trade diamond classification and work with end consumers that do not know. After end consumers learn this system they do not automatically translate this system into 1) their choice and 2) their trust.

This is my question to all GG and other schools graduates here: did you learn in the gemology institute how to build business and how to add value?
I am not GIA educated and I don''t have any degrees from other Gemological schools..., but in my experience the only way someone can learn how to add value in this business is: Experience and Education (mostly self education based on true live experience!!!!)

If I am not mistaken..., to earn a GG degree, one must learn for +/- 6 months, and GIA teaches you somewhere in the range of a couple of hundred different varieties of Gem Stone material.... (Truthfully, I think after completing the course, you know a bit here and there..., but you are far from being educated enough to jump into the world of Gem manufacturing or trading!!!) am i making sense????
Dear Diagem ,

I need to give you my " Real " experience at GIA .
I graduated in 2004 at HQ carlsbad. I am singaporean G.G.

Its an 80% practical coursework based .Everybody has their own personal stonecount at the end of the coursework .
I was average in terms of quanity but i did over 600 diamonds , 2500 coloured stones .
We focus much on the treatments to Ruby , Sapphire , Emerald , Alexandrite and all Synthetics ....but we also identfy
hundreds of other varieties ...

We learn how to correctly use machines like refractometers, spectroscopes , Polariscope .....
Its not easy i can tell you ....it takes much perseverence to learn how to use them correctly .
Because every gem specie can react to machines differently so we need to know what approach is best ...


Our Exam is based corely around a 20 stone anoymous selection. You have to strike 20/20
of my class of 18 . 6 passed on the 1st try . some got so depressed and worried but passed on the 5th attempt.
My best friend didnt even want to speak to me after his 3rd try and he passed on the 5th.

2 did not Graduate
Its not easy i assure you . my best fren is a master''s degree holder

You seem to speak from a viewpoint like you know the curriculum , but you dont.
The FGA to me would be considered really theoretical.
Finally my point is ...
If you are doing sales , GG is not necessary but good to have .
If you are a buyer , u need to know the treatments in the market . A GG is a must.
If you are in manufacturing , GG is not necessary as we are very good at identifying treaments only in
faceted stones mainly ...
think i have seen many other schools that teach you how to Facet gems and diamonds ...

And lastly a GG is the quickest way to come into the trade and know alot about stones ....
Its true that many dealers are not GG cos its very easy to sell certificates nowadays ....
But give them a stone or diamond that has no cert .....it will be tough ...

I work with Sri Lankans , and one of them named Machu , he''s good , he normally just use a loupe and heft the stone
to work out what kind of stone it is .....Not many are that good as him .....
But really when you have to buy a USD$50,000 sapphire that has no cert .....and you need to decide now .....i dont think Machu can be so confident anymore .....

Warmest Regards , dave









 

Serg

Ideal_Rock
Trade
Joined
Mar 21, 2002
Messages
2,654

Re: GIA :” ..What is not adequately mentioned by the authors is that there is much overlap in the cut grades from the two systems…”


I saw big difference between AGS0 2005 chart and GIA Excellent.
I do not see principal difference between ASG0 PGS 2006 and GIA Excellent now.
AGS0 and GIA Ex are too similar now.
There is huge difference between AGS 2005 charts and AGS PGS 2006 grade.
 

diagem

Ideal_Rock
Trade
Joined
Oct 21, 2004
Messages
5,096
Date: 3/6/2007 1:17:53 AM
Author: padparashah

Dear Diagem ,

I need to give you my '' Real '' experience at GIA .
I graduated in 2004 at HQ carlsbad. I am singaporean G.G. Congratulations!!!

Its an 80% practical coursework based .Everybody has their own personal stonecount at the end of the coursework .
I was average in terms of quanity but i did over 600 diamonds , 2500 coloured stones .
We focus much on the treatments to Ruby , Sapphire , Emerald , Alexandrite and all Synthetics ....but we also identfy
hundreds of other varieties ... All that in six months??? Dave, I do over 600 stones a day sometimes! But I am backed with 25 years of experience!
Please understand my point of view..., I would much rather concentrate on a few minerals (and know them to a deeper extent), than get educated on thousands of different specimens and know a bit on each. And common, you must admit that learning thousands of different Gems in a 6 month period is a bit overwhelming!!


We learn how to correctly use machines like refractometers, spectroscopes , Polariscope .....
Its not easy i can tell you ....it takes much perseverence to learn how to use them correctly .
Because every gem specie can react to machines differently so we need to know what approach is best ... Thats is good, you should be educated on these machines..., that is one of the reasons someone choose to sign-up for a GIA course.


Our Exam is based corely around a 20 stone anoymous selection. You have to strike 20/20
of my class of 18 . 6 passed on the 1st try . some got so depressed and worried but passed on the 5th attempt.
My best friend didnt even want to speak to me after his 3rd try and he passed on the 5th.

2 did not Graduate
Its not easy i assure you . my best fren is a master''s degree holder

You seem to speak from a viewpoint like you know the curriculum , but you dont.
The FGA to me would be considered really theoretical. You are entitled to your opinion.
But please refrain from pointing out my knowledge as you dont know who I am and what my education is....


Finally my point is ...
If you are doing sales , GG is not necessary but good to have .
If you are a buyer , u need to know the treatments in the market . A GG is a must.
If you are in manufacturing , GG is not necessary as we are very good at identifying treaments only in Your own words!
faceted stones mainly ...
think i have seen many other schools that teach you how to Facet gems and diamonds ... Can you name more than one handful?

And lastly a GG is the quickest way to come into the trade and know alot about stones .... Like I said above..., the degree will help you land a job! But Dave, be serious..., there is no way on earth you (not you personally) can know alot about stones after a six month course that covers over 2,500 different Gemstones.., If you were to concentrate on a gemstone for six months straight..., you would still be far away from knowing alot on that specific Gemstone.
A lot of time (years), practice and trial and error is needed to get to a point of being well knowledgeable in this field.
I am for many years in this industry and I still dont say that I know alot about stones!!! And am still learning everyday!!!

Its true that many dealers are not GG cos its very easy to sell certificates nowadays ....
But give them a stone or diamond that has no cert .....it will be tough ... And GG''s have no problem purchasing Gems without grading reports....

I work with Sri Lankans , and one of them named Machu , he''s good , he normally just use a loupe and heft the stone
to work out what kind of stone it is .....Not many are that good as him .....
But really when you have to buy a USD$50,000 sapphire that has no cert .....and you need to decide now .....i dont think Machu can be so confident anymore ..... And you..., will you be confident enough to purchase that Sapphire??? After all, you are a GG.

Warmest Regards , dave









Dave, I am happy to sense your enthusiastic in regards to this great industry...
And I even remember myself speaking this way in the beginning...
But believe it or not, only after many years that I thought I knew a lot in regards to Gems. I found out that in reality, I was far away from being so knowledgeable in this field!!!

Like I said above..., only the many years of experience and self education will get you more educated!!!!

Good Luck,
 

padparashah

Rough_Rock
Joined
Mar 2, 2007
Messages
9
Date: 3/6/2007 4:02:58 AM
Author: DiaGem

Date: 3/6/2007 1:17:53 AM
Author: padparashah


Dear Diagem ,

I need to give you my '' Real '' experience at GIA .
I graduated in 2004 at HQ carlsbad. I am singaporean G.G. Congratulations!!!


Its an 80% practical coursework based .Everybody has their own personal stonecount at the end of the coursework .
I was average in terms of quanity but i did over 600 diamonds , 2500 coloured stones .
We focus much on the treatments to Ruby , Sapphire , Emerald , Alexandrite and all Synthetics ....but we also identfy
hundreds of other varieties ... All that in six months??? Dave, I do over 600 stones a day sometimes! But I am backed with 25 years of experience!
Please understand my point of view..., I would much rather concentrate on a few minerals (and know them to a deeper extent), than get educated on thousands of different specimens and know a bit on each. And common, you must admit that learning thousands of different Gems in a 6 month period is a bit overwhelming!!


We learn how to correctly use machines like refractometers, spectroscopes , Polariscope .....
Its not easy i can tell you ....it takes much perseverence to learn how to use them correctly .
Because every gem specie can react to machines differently so we need to know what approach is best ... Thats is good, you should be educated on these machines..., that is one of the reasons someone choose to sign-up for a GIA course.


Our Exam is based corely around a 20 stone anoymous selection. You have to strike 20/20
of my class of 18 . 6 passed on the 1st try . some got so depressed and worried but passed on the 5th attempt.
My best friend didnt even want to speak to me after his 3rd try and he passed on the 5th.

2 did not Graduate
Its not easy i assure you . my best fren is a master''s degree holder

You seem to speak from a viewpoint like you know the curriculum , but you dont.
The FGA to me would be considered really theoretical. You are entitled to your opinion.
But please refrain from pointing out my knowledge as you dont know who I am and what my education is....



Finally my point is ...
If you are doing sales , GG is not necessary but good to have .
If you are a buyer , u need to know the treatments in the market . A GG is a must.
If you are in manufacturing , GG is not necessary as we are very good at identifying treaments only in Your own words!
faceted stones mainly ...
think i have seen many other schools that teach you how to Facet gems and diamonds ... Can you name more than one handful?

And lastly a GG is the quickest way to come into the trade and know alot about stones .... Like I said above..., the degree will help you land a job! But Dave, be serious..., there is no way on earth you (not you personally) can know alot about stones after a six month course that covers over 2,500 different Gemstones.., If you were to concentrate on a gemstone for six months straight..., you would still be far away from knowing alot on that specific Gemstone.
A lot of time (years), practice and trial and error is needed to get to a point of being well knowledgeable in this field.
I am for many years in this industry and I still dont say that I know alot about stones!!! And am still learning everyday!!!

Its true that many dealers are not GG cos its very easy to sell certificates nowadays ....
But give them a stone or diamond that has no cert .....it will be tough ... And GG''s have no problem purchasing Gems without grading reports....

I work with Sri Lankans , and one of them named Machu , he''s good , he normally just use a loupe and heft the stone
to work out what kind of stone it is .....Not many are that good as him .....
But really when you have to buy a USD$50,000 sapphire that has no cert .....and you need to decide now .....i dont think Machu can be so confident anymore ..... And you..., will you be confident enough to purchase that Sapphire??? After all, you are a GG.

Warmest Regards , dave









Dave, I am happy to sense your enthusiastic in regards to this great industry...
And I even remember myself speaking this way in the beginning...
But believe it or not, only after many years that I thought I knew a lot in regards to Gems. I found out that in reality, I was far away from being so knowledgeable in this field!!!

Like I said above..., only the many years of experience and self education will get you more educated!!!!

Good Luck,
Dear Dia Gem ,

Thanks for your reply ...
For the record , we do not identfy more than 200 species or varieties .....
Most of the stones on the B chart are up to the students themselves ....
Those who go fast can try the B stones ....its democratic , they dont force you ...

Most of us really just focus on the big 5 - 10 types of gems in the market .....
Because that''s what is really commercially necessary to know ....
And we do the course 8am - 5pm , Mon - Fri , thats why we can do that amount of stones ....
Its not normal University where you attend class maybe 3 times a week only .
We are only ever able to be late 3 times in the course , more than that , you have to see the disciplinarian.
So 6 months , is Full Time .

If you can do 600 melee a day ...great for you .
But we had to grade diamonds for 8 weeks .....a full grading like those certs you get .

I mentioned that you do not know our curriculum as such its perhaps not accurate for you to comment
on what the GG course is in detail.
I am not suggesting or Hinting or even trying to guess what your knowledge or education is .
or discrediting you in any manner.
I have seen the FGA course work at GIA library so i can comment on their course materials ...
Pls dont get me wrong on this matter.
I respect you like any individual.

Like i mentioned we focus on the big 5 - 10 gems ....the rest is really not our focus .
When i say we know alot about stones , it means the 5 - 10 that we focus on .

GG''s have always had problems purchasing as far as pricing is concerned .
My dad who is also a GG in 1979 , buys gems in bangkok . He told me jokes about how many fresh grad GG''s bought stones
at too high a price or bought something that was not the Top class ...
One even brought a computer systerm to go to asia to buy ....thinking that the various colour charts he has
on his laptop will help him to buy a top colour .....
To be a good Buyer , its really about something else , memory , aggression , keeping cool .....character traits...
most importanty since there isnt a price guide for coloured stones ......its all about practice before you can really get the real price ......

lastly , that USD$50,000 Sapphire . If you can Identify the inclusions that''s proof of natural origin , or proof of heat treatment , or proof ofHydrothermal , Flux synthetics or Ramaura''s , understand about berrilium or Diffusion , or Lead Glass Filling .......Its not difficult .
That''s how my mum and his brother made it in this trade .....
one buyer and one checker ....but both are GG''s ....

Experience is very important but Learning the correct way is also very important ....
Or you will be doing the wrong thing over and over again for 25 yrs ....


warmest regards , dave
 

diagem

Ideal_Rock
Trade
Joined
Oct 21, 2004
Messages
5,096
Date: 3/6/2007 5:15:57 AM
Author: padparashahDear Dia Gem ,

Thanks for your reply ...
For the record , we do not identfy more than 200 species or varieties .....
Most of the stones on the B chart are up to the students themselves ....
Those who go fast can try the B stones ....its democratic , they dont force you ...

Most of us really just focus on the big 5 - 10 types of gems in the market ..... Even 1 in a six month periodis not conquerable.
Because that''s what is really commercially necessary to know ....
And we do the course 8am - 5pm , Mon - Fri , thats why we can do that amount of stones .... (if its not long-distance..., right?)
Its not normal University where you attend class maybe 3 times a week only .
We are only ever able to be late 3 times in the course , more than that , you have to see the disciplinarian.
So 6 months , is Full Time .

If you can do 600 melee a day ...great for you . I didnt say that... (as a matter of fact, I dont do rounds.)
But we had to grade diamonds for 8 weeks .....a full grading like those certs you get . You mean reports, right!!! GIA does not issue Diamond certificates!

I mentioned that you do not know our curriculum as such its perhaps not accurate for you to comment
on what the GG course is in detail. Believe me, I know what student learn to earn their GG Diploma. I have sent quite a few of my employees to earn that degree!!!
I am not suggesting or Hinting or even trying to guess what your knowledge or education is .
or discrediting you in any manner.
I have seen the FGA course work at GIA library so i can comment on their course materials ...
Pls dont get me wrong on this matter.
I respect you like any individual.

Like i mentioned we focus on the big 5 - 10 gems ....the rest is really not our focus .
When i say we know alot about stones , it means the 5 - 10 that we focus on . see my comment above.

GG''s have always had problems purchasing as far as pricing is concerned .
My dad who is also a GG in 1979 , buys gems in bangkok . He told me jokes about how many fresh grad GG''s bought stones
at too high a price or bought something that was not the Top class ...
One even brought a computer systerm to go to asia to buy ....thinking that the various colour charts he has
on his laptop will help him to buy a top colour .....
To be a good Buyer , its really about something else , memory , aggression , keeping cool .....character traits... You forgot plenty of time and experience!
most importanty since there isnt a price guide for coloured stones ......its all about practice before you can really get the real price ...... I dont think there is what you consider a "real price". Its on a Gem per Gem basis.

lastly , that USD$50,000 Sapphire . If you can Identify the inclusions that''s proof of natural origin , or proof of heat treatment , or proof ofHydrothermal , Flux synthetics or Ramaura''s , understand about berrilium or Diffusion , or Lead Glass Filling .......Its not difficult .
That''s how my mum and his brother made it in this trade .....
one buyer and one checker ....but both are GG''s ....

Experience is very important but Learning the correct way is also very important .... Agreed!!!
Or you will be doing the wrong thing over and over again for 25 yrs .... Mistakes happen!!! Especially when you do things..., the important thing is to learn from your mistakes. And that takes a LOT of time!


warmest regards , dave
 
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