Referee Development

Become a U.S. Soccer Certified Referee

What’s in it for you? Refereeing is a great way for high school kids to learn the laws of soccer and to make some money while they are doing it. It’s also a great way for adults to stay fit and connected to their game, community, and club. Previous playing experience is not required. To start refereeing, you must be at least 13 years or older and successfully complete all parts of a referee clinic to get certified.

Benefits to refereeing

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Learning the laws of the game

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Be part of a networking circle that is passionate about soccer

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Flexible scheduling

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Boost your income

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Improve your communication and decision-making skills

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Referee clinic fee reimbursement from RISE

Referee courses consist of 3 parts

  • A self-paced online course
  • A half-day classroom session (online portion must be completed prior to the classroom session) - Due to COVID, these are currently being held virtually
  • A certification test

The purpose of the U.S. Soccer Referee Course is to prepare officials for the competitive youth game. Based on the level of training provided, U.S. Soccer recommends that these officials be assigned to the most appropriate age group and level to best serve the game and the referees.

RISE SC Players

Steps to earning your certification

Download the IFAB Laws of the Game app (via Apple App Store or Google Play) to get the latest rules.

Download the IFAB Laws of the Game app (via Apple App Store or Google Play)

Complete a self-paced online referee course through U.S. Soccer (about 4-5 hours)

Complete a self-paced online referee course through U.S. Soccer (about 4-5 hours)
Complete an in-person on-field training clinic (usually about 3 hours) - Due to COVID protocols, these are all currently being held virtually

Complete an in-person on-field training clinic (usually about 3 hours)

Pass the Grassroots Referee Certification Quiz

Pass the Grassroots Referee Certification Quiz

Complete a background check and Safe Sport training (if 18 years or older)

Complete a background check and Safe Sport training (if 18 years or older)

Future referees must complete all of the above in order to be properly registered with U.S. Soccer.

Referee Course Schedule

The online portion of the class can be done anytime on the US Soccer Learning Center for Referees. If you have a US Soccer Coaching license via the DCC (Digital Coaching Center), you can use the same registration.

To finish the certification process, you must participate in a short in-person clinic. The schedule of in-person clinics and registration can be found on the US Soccer Learning Center for Referees.

New referees in South Texas must register on the South Texas Soccer Referees website in order to be eligible for game assignments.

Upcoming clinics hosted by RISE

Due to COVID-19, all referee courses are currently virtual in lieu of an In-Person Field Session for the Grassroots First Time Referee licensing course.

The next virtual clinic for the Houston area will be Sunday, March 14 at 8pm. The online part of the course MUST be completed 48 hours prior to the virtual course. Register for the course online.

Fee Reimbursement Opportunity

The clinic fees (about $80 in total) are eligible for reimbursement from RISE once a new referee has worked six games that the club sponsors (PDF, Rec, HYSA).

Earn Extra $

Referees pay varies by age group (length of game) and position (center/assistant). Certified referees can work games at RISE fields, as well as work games sanctioned by other US Soccer affiliated organizations. A center referee can earn from $25-$60 per game, while an assistant referee can earn $15-35 per game.