Profession skill levels fall into nine stages of increasing ability to learn and execute recipes: Apprentice, Journeyman, Expert, Artisan, Master (), Grand Master (), Illustrious Grand Master (), Zen Master (), Draenor Master (), and Legion Master ().
- At 125 skill points (not counting racial or other bonuses), you can learn the Expert stage and gain up to 225 points before you must learn Artisan to advance.
- You must be level 20 to become an Expert.
- You can learn the Artisan stage at 200 points before you reach 225 points.
- Secondary professions require a special book to train for the Expert stage.
The expert is similar to a commoner, but they are well trained or perform a unique role in society. Experts are diverse, skilled, and less widespread than commoners. A village blacksmith who turns out horseshoes and iron pots is a commoner, while the king's swordsmith is an expert. The dwarven gemcutter, night elf herbalist, and Forsaken wilderness guide are all experts.