Referee Course Information

Below is a summary of FFA's Referee Courses:

*   Program length is indicative only

** From 1 January 2014 this is only available online HERE

For detailed information on the different types of courses available, please continue reading below:


Referee Courses

Gaining outdoor refereeing accreditation begins with the ‘Laws of the Game’ online educational tool providing a basic introduction to the Laws of the Game and the explanation of each law.  The Level 4 qualification complements the Laws of the Game’s theoretical focus and is aimed at match officials officiating in junior and youth matches.

You must complete both the online Laws of the Game and Level 4 Referee training programs before you can be appointed to any matches except MiniRoos.

The Level 3 training program builds on the basics developed in the Level 4 Referee course by focusing on ‘skill consolidation’ and is aimed at match officials officiating in junior to lower divisions of adult football.

The Level 2 training program is the beginning of the advanced phase and follows the theme of ‘development of advanced officiating’ which are taught as a concentrated set of theoretical classroom presentations (8 hours) followed by practical assessments, coaching in matches (minimum of 2matches) and completion of the program folder.  The training program is conducted over the course of at least one full season. Successful referees will be considered qualified to officiate at matches ranging from junior football to the penultimate senior football in their State, Territory or region.

The Level 1 training program, centred on a theme of senior officiating and commitment to excellence, prepares applicants to officiate at matches from junior football to the highest level of senior football in their State, Territory or region and potentially at national level. This program includes a concentrated set of classroom presentations (8 hours) followed by practical assessments and coaching in matches (minimum of 2 matches) and completion of the program folder that is reviewed by both the State Referees Committee and FFA.  The program is conducted over the course of at least one full season.



Assessor Courses

Becoming a Referee Assessor is a crucial part of a Referee’s continuing development. With this in mind from 1 January 2014 referees who wish to undertake the Level 1 Referee training program must hold a Level 3 Assessor qualification (or higher).

The broad aims of the Assessors’ courses are to enable participants to develop an awareness of the role of the Referee Assessor; to recognise the need for career long development of Referees; and to provide Assessors with the basic tools, practices and policies they need to carry out their roles effectively. Courses prepare Assessors to work initially at a developmental level (local junior and youth levels) through to full assessment and coaching techniques for elite match officials.

Both the Level 2 and 3 Assessors are qualified to assess and coach match officials assigned to local junior, youth and adult level matches. Tasks include, but are not limited to, the provision of coaching reports and match running sheets.

Level 1 Assessors are qualified to coach and assess all match officials in their code, including those officiating at senior and elite level. The course includes pre-course exercises, classroom-based instruction, attendance at a live match and post-course exercises.



Instructor Courses

There are currently two Referee Instructor classifications; Level 3 Instructor and Level 2 Instructor. The courses are designed to enhance the abilities of individual football Referee Instructors and to provide accredited Instructors to undertake the development of match officials.

The level 3 course is designed to provide Referee Instructors with the tools and support to conduct grassroots referees courses at local and regional levels.

The Level 2 Instructor course is designed for Instructors who have completed the Level 3 Instructor qualification and will be conducting Level 2 Referee and Assessor training programs.



Club Assistant Referee Course

The Assistant Referee Course is a FREE 90-minute interactive presentation aimed at club volunteers and parents who might be willing to or often do 'run the line', to give them more knowledge about the Laws of the Game relevant to ARs and to make them feel more comfortable in the role.  Relevant presentation resources are also available online relating directly to the course material.



Futsal Referee Course

Similarly to outdoor referees, futsal match officials must initially complete a basic introduction course regarding the Futsal Laws of the Game, providing an overview to Futsal’s Laws and interpretations. This additionally includes a written theory examination. Moving forward, the Level 3 futsal referee’s course complements the Futsal Laws of the Game’s theoretical focus. Participants are required to demonstrate all pre-officiating unit competencies before accepting any referee appointments, with units taught as a concentrated set of presentations and practical taking about six hours. Practical assessments and other activities complete the course.

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