Coin toss

The FA Referee Course


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 of online learning on the Laws of the Game and face-to-face training. You must complete the online learning and online safeguarding training before booking your place on The FA Referee Course. 

Minimum Age: 14 years old

Price: £120 (includes whistle, flag, cards and notebook)

Leading To: Registered referee status (either Level 7 or youth referee level)


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.  


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.

Get In Touch

Clare Thompson

Education Course Administrator (Part-Time)

07719 028924

Before booking your place on a course

Before attending the face-to-face training, all learners must complete online learning on the Laws of the Game and online safeguarding training. If you are aged 16 or over and intend to referee junior football (U18), you will need to obtain an FA DBS.

Important information: If your child is under 18, they must have a parent/guardian linked FAN (FA Number) before they can access the steps below. CLICK HERE for guidance. 

Please ensure that the online learning is completed on the child fan account and not the parent/guardian fan.

Please follow the steps below to gain access to a course:

Step 1

Complete Online Laws of the Game

Step 2



The 'Safeguarding for All' is the minimum requirement. However, we recommend if you are over 16 you complete the Safeguarding Children Course.  


Both courses are available at this link.

Step 3

If you are aged 16 and over, you will be required to obtain an FA DBS*

You must have begun your DBS application prior to the start date of the course you intend to complete.

*Not a requirement if refereeing adult football only.

Obtain FA DBS

Step 4

You can proceed with your course booking once the above steps are completed. Please note that we reserve the right to cancel your course booking if the above steps have not been met.

Please refer to our FAQs for support.

Upcoming courses

Wickersley School & Sports College, Bawtry Road, Rotherham S66 1JL

Session 1: Thursday 27th June, 18:00-21:00

Session 2: Sunday 30th June, 09:00-17:00

Click here to book

Leisure United Thorncliffe, Pack Horse Lane, Sheffield, S35 3HY

Session 1: Wednesday 12th June, 18:00-21:00

Session 2: Sunday 16th June, 09:00-17:00

Click here to book

To express your interest in attending a referee course in your area, please email


We're with you from the start

Support is available after the course to help you progress from a trainee referee to a fully qualified referee.
Further information is available to support you with the following; 
  • Completing your first five games
  • Requesting your Referee ID Card (required if you plan to officiate youth football)
  • Identifying suitable games for you to officiate (information about all of our affiliated competitions)
  • Attending a Referee Review Session
  • Becoming fully qualified

find out more