Coin toss

Referee Courses



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 via the England Learning Portal

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


Related Documents



Course Overview
Minimum Age: 14

Price: Up to 31/07/2024- £145

From 01/08/2024 - £185 with £50 refund after 10 completed matches.

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

Currently, all courses for the 2023/24 season are fully booked.

Please fill in our waiting list, in order to be notified of any slots becoming available, or new dates added to the development schedule.


Module 1 - Before the Match

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.

Module 2 - Signals and Communication

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

Module 3 - Getting it Right

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.

Module 4 - Offside

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.

Module 5 - Managing Restarts and Set-Pieces

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 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.

You will 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.

Tablet with Refereeing Laws of the Game guide

This new online guide is the official first step towards becoming a referee.

It’s free to complete, open to everyone 14+ and over five modules will carefully guide you through the Laws of the Game.

You’ll be shown how each Law should be applied during matches, with plenty of opportunity to try what you’ve learned with several interactive activities.

Once you have completed this and The FA Safeguarding For All Course, you’ll be ready to move onto the face-to-face training course.


Currently, all courses for the 2023/24 season are fully booked.

Please fill in our waiting list, in order to be notified of any slots becoming available, or new dates added to the development schedule.


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.

Special Offer

For a limited period, you will also be provided with associate membership of a local Referees Society in Hampshire.


An individual under the age of 16 must have a parent or guardian linked to their FA account to be able to access the Laws of the Game guide.

Find support for this here

The minimum age to book onto and attend a referee course is 14. There is no maximum age.

Prior to being allocated a space on The FA Referee Course you MUST complete the following:
Once you have completed these elements you will then be called forward to attend face-to-face training at one of the below courses. Should you require any assistance then please contact

From the 1st of August 2024, the FA Referee Course pricing structure will change.

The initial cost of the FA Referee Course will change from £145 to £185 however, all participants will receive a £50 reimbursement following the completion of 10 matches as an official, reducing the overall outlay by £10 to £135.

All bookings are made through a secure online portal and confirmations of bookings are generated back to you after payment has been made. 

You will be required to enter your FA Number (FAN) and password to book onto a course or create a FAN and password when you go to book onto a referee course if you don’t have one already
Please Note: You will need to create a new FAN for your Son/Daughter if you already have a FAN yourself, because the FAN used will be accepted as the person booked on.