There are the six certification levels for AYSO referees. Here is a brief description of the requirements for each. Contact your Regional Referee Administrator (RRA) for more details:
(minimum age 10)
Complete the U-8 Official Course and pass the U-8 Official Exam.
(minimum age 12)
Complete the Assistant Referee Course and pass the Assistant Referee Exam.
(minimum age 12)
Complete the Regional Referee Course and pass the Regional Referee Exam.
There is an online version and an in-person option for Regional Certification.
(minimum age 14)
Complete 25 games as referee with at least five in U-12 games, complete the Intermediate Referee Course, pass the Intermediate Referee Exam and be (observed) mentored in a U-12 game.
(minimum age 16)
Complete 50 games as referee with at least 10 in U-14 and five as an assistant referee (in U-14), complete the Advanced Referee Course, pass the Advanced Referee Exam, pass one assessment as referee and one as assistant referee in a U-14 match, pass the AYSO Physical Fitness Test.
(minimum age 18)
Complete 100 games as referee with at least 30 in U-16 and U-19 games and 25 as Assistant Referee with at least 10 in U-19, complete the National Referee Course, pass the National Referee Exam, pass two assessments as referee in U-16 or U-19 matches and one as assistant referee in a U-19 match, complete the AYSO Physical Fitness Test.
I am a soccer player and understand the game very well; can I just take the certification test and avoid some or all of the beginning course?
The online Regional Referee Training can help cut the classroom time by providing you the opportunity to complete the course at your own pace and in your own home. All new referees then have to do is take the in-person Online Companion Course component in order to take the certification exam. Many of those who have played the game and think they know the Laws of the Game are surprised to find out how much there is to learn when they actually start studying to become a referee. Attending a face to face training course with an experienced instructor is a valuable learning experience.
They are us: volunteers. Many referees start when their children are young and move up with them. Referee training is provided for all age groups and levels.
AYSO is a volunteer organization; we all do it for the kids. Each season we need as many referees as coaches if not more. Refereeing is easier and less of a time commitment. AYSO is about playing Fun, Fair and Safe. Our referee training is what makes it possible. If there is no official to referee a game the kids don’t get to play.