2019 Continuing Education Modules

The 2019 Continuing Education Recognition Program modules are now available. Complete all eight modules by December 31, 2019 in order to receive your Continuing Education Recognition Program participation acknowledgment.

Assignment 1 Release Date: 2/4/2019

Observations on the Colored Stone Market

Today more than ever, changes in the gem and jewelry market happen at a lightning pace. Fluctuations in pricing and production output at various sources, along with evolving business models, can be overwhelming for consumers and members of the trade alike. Organizations like Gem World International exist to help us keep track of these market changes. In 2018, Mr. Robertson, Vice President and Director of Research at Gem World International, Inc., sat down with GIA to discuss trends he’s currently observing in the global colored stone market.

This is the first assignment in the 2019 Continuing Education Recognition Program. You will have continuous access to the entire course -- including the assignments, the GIA eLearning courses, and the multimedia archive -- until the end of the calendar year. Be sure to complete all eight assignments by December 31st, 2019 in order to receive your Continuing Education Recognition Program certificate.

Assignment 2 Release Date: 3/4/2019

Ruby Mining in Myanmar

A centuries-old legend surrounds Burmese warriors, who believed rubies made them invincible. Perhaps this belief arose from the coveted gem’s fiery appearance and outstanding durability. Myanmar (formerly Burma), famed for its magnificent “pigeon’s blood” rubies, was faced with an international ban on its gemstones in 2003. This ban was subsequently lifted in 2016. Recently, GIA field gemologists had the privilege of visiting Ruby Dragon of Myanmar, an exploration and mining company established in 1992 that specializes in ruby, jade, gold and antimony. They had the pleasure of interviewing Mr. Ye Myat Thu, the son of the company’s founder, Mr. Nay Win Tun. Join us for a look at ruby mining in Myanmar.

Assignment 3 Release Date: 4/1/2019

News from Tucson 2019

Each year, a team of GIA gemologists explore the world famous Tucson Gem and Mineral Show. Because the show attracts gem and jewelry experts from all over the world, they are able to visit with various trade members and learn about new developments in the industry. GIA staff gathers information regarding new sources, trends in jewelry and jewelry-making, marketing and much more. Join us for a look at a few of these conversations.

Assignment 4 Release Date: 5/6/2019

Perspectives on Responsible Sourcing and Fair Trade

Members of the jewelry trade are faced with more challenges than ever before as today’s customers are more engaged in social responsibility. Consumers ask more questions about where their luxury goods are coming from and whether those goods positively impact the source communities. The trade needs to assure their customers of the benefits their goods are imparting. They need transparency in their supply chains in order to qualify for lending, as financial institutions have sometimes withheld funding due to too much risk. But most of all, members of the jewelry industry need to advance their commitments to do good. Join us for a discussion with members of the trade who are on the forefront of responsible sourcing and fair trade in our industry.

Assignment 5 Release Date: 6/3/2019

Myanmar Gems Emporium

Twice a year, the Myanmar government holds auctions for high quality jade, pearls, and other colored stones produced within the country. This somewhat mysterious event is known as the Myanmar Gems Emporium. Rarely seen by outsiders, a team from GIA was lucky enough to gain permission to attend the most recent event. They were able to see how buyers decided on which lots to bid on and witness auctions taking place. 

Assignment 6 Release Date: 7/1/2019

Superdeep Diamonds

At the Carnegie Institution of Washington, Dr. Steven Shirey’s research on diamond inclusions helps us understand how continents form and what happens in the deepest parts of Earth. Diamonds are uniquely suited, protective vessels for transporting mineral samples from deep within the mantle up to the earth’s surface. Studying these mineral inclusions can reveal information on deep mantle mineralogy and the migration of carbon-bearing fluids. They also give clues to how mantle geodynamics work. In this month’s presentation, Dr. Shirey discusses diamond types and what can be learned from them.

Assignment 7 Release Date: 8/5/2019

Peridot from Myanmar

Peridot is known as the birthstone for August, but this lovely gem has a long and fascinating history. Peridot’s use in jewelry dates back to ancient times when it was believed to have calming properties and the ability to enhance one’s self-esteem. Egyptians mined this “gem of the sun” on a tiny speck of land in the Red Sea that we know as Zabargad Island or St. John’s Island. Some historians believe that many of Cleopatra’s fabled emeralds were actually peridot. Today, much of the world’s supply of peridot comes from China, Pakistan, and the United States, but an important source of top quality peridot is Myanmar. Join us for a look at the magnificent peridot from Myanmar.

Assignment 8 Release Date: 9/2/2019

Russian Demantoid

Say “garnet” and most people imagine rich, red gems but the January birthstone comes in a variety of colors that includes shades of pink, orange, yellow, and green. One of the green garnets, demantoid was first discovered in the Ural Mountains of Russia in the mid-1800s. Miners were enthralled by the brilliance and fire displayed by the gems, comparing them to diamonds. Hence, the new gem was bestowed the name “demantoid,” derived from the French demant, meaning diamond. Demantoid garnets quickly became a favorite of the House of Fabergé, where they were used in magnificent jewelry and luxury items. These garnets are still being mined in the area near the original find. A team from GIA recently visited the mining operations in Russia. This month, they discuss what they learned.