How do I become a referee?

Throughout the year, the State Referee Committee, Referee Chairman and referees from around the area are asked the question, "How do I become a referee?"

The answer is simple — attend and successfully complete a referee training program. North Texas and its member associations offer two, entry-level programs for individuals interested in becoming a referee. Let's take a minute and discuss both options.

We will start with the Grade 9 Recreational Referee program. As a candidate, you must be 12 years old or older on or before March 1 (for the Spring season) or Sept. 1 (for the Fall season). No experience is required, however one will have a better chance of successful completion with a basic understanding of the game.

Requirements to successfully complete the Grade 9 Recreational Referee program include 9.5 hours of classroom instruction, a field session where you must demonstrate the lessons learned in the classroom, and a written exam that requires a score of 75 or better in order to pass the course. At the completion of the program, you will register with North Texas and the United States Soccer Federation as a Grade 9 Recreational Referee.

There are two restrictions you should be aware of. As a Grade 9 Recreational Referee, you will be restricted to officiating recreational youth games U-14 and below, and as an assistant referee you will be restricted to any game U-14 or below (competitive or recreational).

Now let's discuss the Grade 8 Basic Referee Program. As a candidate, you must be 14 years old or older on or before March 1 (for the Spring season) or Sept. 1 (for the Fall season). No experience is required, however, just as with the Grade 9 Program, one will have a better chance of successful completion with a good understanding of the game.

Requirements to successfully complete the Grade 8 Basic Referee program include 15.5 hours of classroom instruction, a field session where you must demonstrate the lessons learned in the classroom, and a written exam that requires a score of 75 or better to pass the course. At the completion of the program, you will register with North Texas and the United States Soccer Federation as a Grade 8 Basic Referee. As a Grade 8 Basic Referee you will be allowed to referee all age groups once you have gained the confidence of your local assignor.

Clinics are requested by the member associations several weeks to a month or more in advance. Most of the clinics occur late January through early March, and then again from late July through September. A link to the current list of available clinics can be found here. Keep in mind, the list is being updated constantly, so keep checking back till you find what you're looking for.

Good luck!



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