Coin toss

The FA Referee Course

Course Content 

Online Learning

Before we can allow candidates onto one of our FA Referee Courses, they must first have completed a Learn The Laws Module and completed an FA Online Safeguarding Course, with it registered on their own FAN record.

New Referee Course Guide 2023-24

The Online Learn the Laws Learning Module can be accessed at: 

If you are under the age of 16, or a parent / guardian, you might find the information at the refereeing help centre useful when logging in. Please access it at:


The Online Safeguarding Course can be accessed at:

All referees will be required to complete the ‘Safeguarding For All Course’.

The Safeguarding for All course will take around 45 minutes to complete. 

FA DBS application

If you are 16+ years old you will be required to have a FA DBS. To apply for a FA DBS please use the form below and follow the step by step guide, once complete you will be required to bring your 3 chosen documents to your course and call the office on 0191 387 2929 to make the £10 payment prior to the course.

Application form here

Face to Face Training
There is 11 hours of face to face training (normally one evening, followed by a full day), which mixes training room work with practical activity on a pitch. Key messages from the online learning are reinforced throughout.  The training room work includes:
• Fun, interactive quizzes
• How to establish rapport and build relationships with players and coaches
• Recognising and dealing with foul challenges and handball
• Managing offside
• Dealing with inappropriate behaviour
• Managing players

On the pitch, you will have the opportunity to turn your knowledge into skills through refereeing game based scenarios. You will practise:
• Communicating decisions
• Cautioning and sending off techniques
• Managing the kick off, free kicks, penalty kicks, corner kicks and throw-ins
• Positioning in open play and at restarts
• Being an assistant referee

New referee course £120 (includes whistle, flags, cards and notebook and a mentor visit)
DBS £10 (If 16 years or older you will require a FA DBS check)

New Referee Course Guide 

Click here to download your referee course handbook.

Qualifying as Referee

To qualify as a referee, you must referee five games after you have attended the face to face training and submitted them on the 5 games form

You will then be invited to attend a referee call back session at Durham FA where you will receive your certificate and FA Referee badge.

You will be supported through those five games by your County Football Association (CFA) as you will be appointed a mentor who will be able to come and watch you referee. As you continue your refereeing career, you will then be able to access further training opportunities, both online and face to face.

Durham County FA, DH3 3SJ

August 1st (9am-5pm)


High Tunstall College, Hartlepool, TS26 0LQ

August 12th/14th/15th (6pm-8.30pm)

Available Dates

Unfortunately there are no available dates.

No Course Dates To Suit You?

If there are no course dates to suit you then you can click below and fill in our Referee Course Expression of Interest form.