Referee Courses and Online Laws Guide

New Match Officials Can Access New Online Modules

How to Become an Essex Football Referee in 2022

A new, online facility is helping to improve understanding of the laws of football, especially for budding new referees, as well as demonstrating how they should be applied.

The FA’s new online ‘Guide to the Laws of the Game’ modules can lead to eventual completion of the full face-to-face course. The five modules, including the variations for youth football, are relevant for any football role and are available free of charge. Anyone who wants to become a referee must complete this learning before attending The FA’s Referees Course.

There are questions at the end of each module, all of which must be answered correctly to successfully complete the learning. Videos are used throughout, plus there are activities to reinforce all the key points within the guide.

Essex County FA Referee Development Officer, Lukas Wood, is encouraging new match officials to come forward and complete the online learning: “The modules and course are for anyone aged 14+ interested in becoming a referee. Once a learner has completed them, we’ll send details of how to book onto the face-to-face FA Referee Course.”

“Upon attending this training, you'll need to go out and referee five 9v9 and/or 11v11 fixtures within the local grassroots leagues. We aim to send a Referee Mentor out to watch you on one of these. After refereeing five fixtures, you'll then become a fully-qualified referee.”

The online modules take around 90 minutes to complete, but don't have to be finished in one go and can be ticked off in stages. For the face-to-face training, this will entail one evening session (6:00-9:00pm) and one full-day session (9:00am-5:00pm). For the five 9v9 and/or 11v11 fixtures, the timescale on this is dependent on the learner/referee and their own availability.

Lukas added: “There is no better time to become a referee, with all the opportunities available. Being able to attend CPDs [Continuing Professional Development] where we welcome Premier League and EFL match officials along is fantastic, as well as delivering face-to-face practical CPDs in which our senior group of match officials deliver.”

Guide to the Laws of the Game Modules

Module 1 (‘Before the Match’) covers the referee’s pre-match responsibilities, including ensuring players’ kit is safe, how to carry out the coin toss and what a referee needs to take with them to a match.

Module 2 (‘Signals and Communication’) contains short video clips (GIFs) which show every signal the referee and assistant referee might give during a match.

Module 3 (‘Getting it Right’) deals with foul challenges, violent conduct, handball, unsporting behaviour, denying an obvious goal-scoring opportunity (DOGSO) offences and advantage. It uses video clips from football at different levels to show how the referee should manage common scenarios.

Module 4 (‘Offside’) 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.

Module 5 (‘Managing Restarts and Set-Pieces’) 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.

To find out more about the learning, or to sign-up, please follow this link. You can also keep up-to-date on the latest grassroots football news by following @EssexCountyFA and @EssexReferees on Twitter and by searching for ‘EssexFootball’ on Facebook.

Forthcoming Referee Courses

Monday 14th February (6:00-9:00pm), Wednesday 16th February (9:00am-5:00pm)
Broomfield FC, Mill Lane, Broomfield, Chelmsford, Essex, CM1 7BQ

Thursday 10th March (6:00-9:00pm), Saturday 12th March (9:00am-5:00pm)
Philip Morant School, Rembrandt Way, Colchester, Essex, CO3 4QS

Thursday 17th March (6:00-9:00pm), Sunday 20th March (9:00am-5:00pm)
Frenford FC, The Jack Carter Centre, The Drive, Ilford, Essex, IG1 3PS

Monday 11th April (6:00-9:00pm), Wednesday 13th April (9:00am-5:00pm)
Broomfield FC, Mill Lane, Broomfield, Chelmsford, Essex, CM1 7BQ

Please Note: Details for how to book onto one of these courses will only be sent to individuals who have completed the online laws of the game modules.

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