Coin toss

The FA Referee Course

Course Overview

Minimum Age: 14

Price: £130

Leading To: Registered Referee Status (either level 8 Youth Referee or Level 7 Junior County Referee)

View available dates


The FA Referee Course is designed to equip new referees with the key skills and knowledge they will need to be able to referee grassroots football matches safely and effectively.  It is for people aged 14 and over who want to referee mini soccer, 9 v 9 and/or 11 v 11 football.  

The course comprises online learning on the Laws of the Game and face to face training. You must complete the online learning before attending the face to face training. You will also need to complete online safeguarding training before attending the face to face training.

Course Content 

Online Learning

The online learning has five sections (modules) and will take approximately 90 minutes to complete. There are lots of videos to demonstrate how the Laws should be applied, activities to help reinforce the important points and, at the end of each module, there are some questions to test what you’ve learned.  

The online learning can be accessed at 

If you are under the age of 16, you might find the information at the refereeing help centre useful when logging in.

This module covers the referee’s pre-match responsibilities and includes ensuring players’ kit is safe, how to carry out the coin toss and what a referee needs to take to a match with them.

This module contains short video clips (GIFs) which show every signal the referee and assistant referee might give during a match.

This module deals with foul challenges, violent conduct, handball, unsporting behaviour, DOGSO offences and advantage. It uses video clips from football at different levels to show how the referee should manage common scenarios.

This module also uses video clips, this time to demonstrate what is and isn’t offside and how the referee should manage offside offences. The clips, like those used in the ‘Getting it Right’ module, are voiced over to explain the decisions the referees make.

This module covers restarts and set-pieces, including goal kicks, corner kicks, throw-ins, free kicks and penalty kicks. It uses both video and illustrations to clarify what players must do at each restart and set-piece and explains what the referee should do if players don’t comply with the Law.

Face to Face Training

There is 11 hours of face to face training (normally one evening, followed by a full day), which mixes training room work with practical activity on a pitch. Key messages from the online learning are reinforced throughout.  The training room work includes:

Fun, interactive quizzes
How to establish rapport and build relationships with players and coaches
Recognising and dealing with foul challenges and handball
Managing offside
Dealing with inappropriate behaviour 
Managing players 

On the pitch, you will have the opportunity to turn your knowledge into skills through refereeing game based scenarios. You will practise:

Communicating decisions
Cautioning and sending off techniques
Managing the kick off, free kicks, penalty kicks, corner kicks and throw-ins 
Positioning in open play and at restarts
Being an assistant referee

Qualifying as a Referee

To qualify as a referee, you must also referee five games after you have attended the face to face training. You will then receive a certificate and an FA Referee badge.

You be supported through those five games by your County Football Association (CFA). As you continue your refereeing career, you will then be able to access further training opportunities, both online and face to face.

Want to become a referee, what do I do now?

Step 1 – Complete Referee Course Expression of Interest Form

Please complete our Referee Course Expression of Interest Form.  This will enable us to contact you to book onto a course once you have completed the required pre-requisites as details below.


Step 2 – Complete Online Laws of the Game Module

Complete the Online Laws of the Game Module as detailed in the Course contact above


Step 3 – Complete Required Safeguarding Training

Before you can become a qualified referee, you also will need to complete FA Safeguarding training, so why not get ahead of the game and complete this training now….


Step 4 – Book onto a course

Once the above is complete, we will provide you links to book onto an upcoming courses


Upcoming Courses

Holmes Park (Very Limited Spaces Available)

Wednesday 14th July: 6pm – 9pm

Sunday 18th July: 9am – 5pm


Judgemeadow Community College

Wednesday 18th August: 6pm – 9pm

Sunday 22nd August: 9am – 5pm


Holmes Park

Wednesday 15th September: 6pm – 9pm

Sunday 19th September: 9am – 5pm


Venue tbc

Wednesday 13th October: 6pm – 9pm

Sunday 17th October: 6pm – 9pm

Register your interest in any course here

Available Dates

Unfortunately there are no available dates.

Important Information

We adhere to a strict cancellation policy and by enrolling onto our course you agree to have read and agree to be bound by our Terms and Conditions and Privacy Notice.

If there is not a course available or at a time that is suitable for you, please complete our Expression of Interest form to keep up to date on the next courses availability 


Get In Touch

Referee Education 

Call: 0116 286 7828