FA Referee Course

The FA Referee Course

Course Overview

Minimum Age: 14

Price: £150

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

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The first crucial step to developing as a referee

The FA Referees Course is designed for anyone aged 14 and up who wants to join the tens of thousands of referees who operate week in week out on local parks, throughout the English football pyramid, up to those who officiate The FA Cup Final and on the International stage. As a referee you play an integral role in ensuring all participants enjoy their match day experience, helping create a competitive, fair, safe and enjoyable playing environment.

Whether you want to referee in youth and adult leagues, men's or womens football or have aspirations of one day walking the ball out at Wembley Stadium, The FA Referees Course is the starting point for your refereeing career. Refereeing is not only rewarding in a football environment, but the social and life skills that come from becoming a referee extend far beyond your initial expectations.








These seven core values underpin all aspects of English refereeing and are all required from the start of your refereeing journey.

Once you have qualified as a referee, there is extensive support available through both your County FA and The FA, helping you to be the best you can be and fulfill your potential as a referee.

  • Overview of course expectations and commitments
  • Basic outline of the Laws of the Game to provide an initial understanding
  • Introduction to the DNA of English Refereeing and the process of completing the course

A mixture of practical and theoretical referee training, focusing on the key skills and techniques required to be a referee. This is then coupled with the practical application of law and the different scenarios that can be faced in a game. Some of the topics covered are; Signals & Communication, Fouls & Misconduct and Positioning & Movement.

Upon completion of Unit 4, a practical Evaluation of Performance and Assessment Of Knowledge is completed to ensure you are ready for Unit 5.

Officiating five 11v11 or 9v9 games, where you are offered a referee mentor to support you on your first few games, with a self evaluation of each game.

Call back session where there is the opportunity to share experiences on the five games refereed, what has worked well and what you might do differently in the future. A final Laws of the Game Examination and information on what happens now and what opportunities are available i.e. Promotion, Academies, Development Groups, In-Service Training etc.


Course Pre-requisites


Before starting Block 5, a Safeguarding Children Workshop and Criminal Records Check (if applicable) must be completed.

Please Note: This course should not be booked on behalf of another person (i.e. a parent/carer on behalf of a child). All booking forms must be completed by the individual who will be completing the course.


The FA Referees Course provides participants with an insight to the laws of the game and their practical application on the field of play. It also looks at the skills required to be a referee.

Candidates should feel comfortable to referee a game of football at the completion of the course, with 75% of the course being in a practical environment.

Sarah Garratt FA Referee Course

Welcome to Refereeing Evenings

The purpose of the Welcome to Refereeing evening is to give attendees further information about the types of referee courses that Surrey FA offer and what is required of the candidates. The evening will also give candidates the opportunity to ask any questions you have about refereeing courses.

Referee course FAQS
The current cost of the course is £150.00 for 9v9/11v11.

If you are aged 16 and over and intend to referee youth football, there is also a £10.00 charge for an FA Criminal Record Check.

It's worth remembering, as a qualified referee you will be entitled to match fees - so your financial outlay early on can quickly be made back through refereeing games.
Anyone aged 14 or over can become a referee. There is no upper age limit but candidates need to be able to fully participate in practical sessions.

Until you reach the age of 16, you will only be able to referee games involving children at least 1 year younger than yourself.

The first step is to complete our Referee Interest List here. 

You will then be asked to attend the Welcome to Refereeing Evening. This is a 2 hour introduction evening where you will be guided through the refereeing experience, looking ahead at your journey.

We strongly recommend that parents of all younger candidates attend this taster session to gain a full understanding of the commitment required to complete the course.

Shortly after the Taster Evening, a link to the booking site will be emailed to enable the candidate to book and pay for their place on the course.

Once the booking stage has been completed and payment received, pre-course learning material will be sent for study and completion prior to attending the practical training elements of the course.
All referees aged 16 years or over who wish to officiate in youth football must undertake an FA CRC enhanced check.

This is a simple online process which will be fully explained to you during the course.

Certification lasts for 3 years (there is a small additional charge for this process).

In addition to the services of FA Referee Tutors, the following is included in the price:

  • A copy of the latest Laws of the Game booklet
  • A pre-course study programme (Unit 1)
  • All course materials
  • FA Safeguarding Children training
  • FA 'Respect' training
  • FA registration fee for one season
  • A referee whistle
  • A set of red/yellow cards & holder (9v9/11v11 course only)
  • Match record cards (9v9/11v11 course only)
  • Assistant Referee Flags (9v9/11v11 only)
  • County FA will confirm your 5 games prior to or at the successful completion of Unit 4
  • A list of League contacts (for information only)
  • A certificate of qualification (following an initial six 11v11 or 9v9 games, and the successful passing of a final examination on the Laws of the Game)
  • FA Referee badge
  • The services of FA Referee Mentors
All referees have to undertake FA Safeguarding Children training before they will be able to register with The FA as a referee.

This will need to be completed prior to attending the first day of the course as it is a prerequisite of attending.

Certification will last for 3 years with the cost of this being included in the course fee. This will be discussed further at the introduction evening with available options fully explained.

Get In Touch

Referee Development Team

By Phone

01372 373543

By Email