New Officials - Click here for more information:


Transfer from USSF or NISOA

Becoming a Soccer Referee

Becoming a referee is a fairly simple process Ė you take a class, you take a test, you pass the test, you buy a uniform and youíre off to officiate your first game. Sounds easy, right? Well nothing is that easy, but we can help you get started. Here is whatís involved in becoming a referee:

Training Class

Find out where and when the next Training Class will be offered in your area. You can locate all the Soccer Officials Associations by contacting a Maine Association of Soccer Officials representative. Your Local Maine Association Of Soccer Officials Representative Once you find the area that is convenient to you call the person listed as the contact.  Now that you have the first step out of the way, things get better.

You will be attending  classroom instruction on learning the basics of becoming a soccer referee. Donít worry, the training is normally spread out over the course of several days depending on the class size. Each class will cover different laws of the game and your instructor will share actual game situations to help you understand these rules. At the end of the class, you will take a test to determine if you have passed the course. If you pass the test, you will be eligible to officiate lower level games such as junior varsity, freshman and middle school soccer matches.

If you pass the test, you will be required you to officiate two years of lower level games in order to build your confidence as a referee. After that second year is under your belt, youíll be eligible to take the Maine Association of Soccer Officials Class 1 test. Pass that test and you will be officiating varsity level games.

Soccer Membership and Classification Guide


A.   Regional Board Membership.

Individuals must apply for membership in a Regional board and shall comply with the requirements of said Regional board. Membership on more than one

MASO board may be granted upon approval of each Executive Board involved.


B.    General Requirements.

1.  Be 16 years of age, or emancipated, at the time of application for membership.

2.  Successfully complete a written examination specifically designed for soccer official candidates.

3.  If the candidate is successful on the written exam, the Regional board has individual options on how it handles fitness testing and field training.


C.   Specific Requirements for non-Class 1 officials:

If a candidate successfully completes a Regional Board membership test, the individual is assigned games as approved by the Regional board.

Regional boards will determine what type of activity will accompany the testing process such as clinics, manner of assigning, observation field testing, etc.


Section 2. Transfers from USSF and NISOA

Officials transferring to a new board will be responsible for alerting the present board secretary who will forward a letter to the new board secretary detailing the status of the official on the previous board.

Crossover requirements NISOA and USSF to MASO


A.   USSF Officials, who are currently active, wishing to become members of the

Maine Association of Soccer Officials:


1.  Must enter at MASO Class 3 if there is two calendar years or less from the time they became a USSF Grass Roots Official and

complete a MASO Approved Training course.


2.  May enter MASO as a non-Class 1 if there is more than two calendar years have passed since he became a USSF Level 8 official.

The applicant must complete a MASO Approved Training course; and successfully pass an exam approved by the Director of Referee

Development at the completion of that training course


3.   May enter as a MASO Class 1 official if they are a USSF Regional Referee or higher, Official and completes a MASO approved

Training course; and passes the MASO Class 1 written and field tests.


A calendar year is defined as month to month over a twelve-month period, e.g. June 2007 to June 2008 would be one calendar year.


B.  NISOA Officials, who are currently active, may transfer into MASO as Class 1 officials upon completion of an approved MASO

Training Course, unless their former NISOA Chapter also officiated high school games using NF Rules; then additional MASO Training is not required.


C.  Active Soccer Officials from other states who officiate using the National Federation of High Schools Rules in their state for interscholastic

athletic association (Equivalent to the Maine Principalsí Association) sanctioned games may enter MASO as an official at the level equal to

that assigned by their Regional board assignor.

 Officials seeking membership in the Maine Association of Soccer Officials as noted above shall submit a letter from the President or Secretary of their current Soccer Board as to their standing. This letter shall be submitted to the Executive Committee of a MASO Regional Board Member who shall determine the validity of the request; and forward their recommendation for MASO status to the MASO Executive Board prior to August 1 or each year.


Uniform and Equipment

Now that youíre ready to officiate, itís time to go out and buy your first uniform. The basic referee uniform shirt varies from Board to Board and you should check with them before buying a shirt (they may also direct you to a website where uniforms may be purchased if not available locally. Check out Helpful Links for Referees on the home page); black referee shorts, black socks with three white stripes and black shoes. There are no particular shoes that we recommend, only that you get a comfortable pair that wonít cause blisters when you run.  In addition to the uniform, you will need a watch, preferably one that counts down time. Youíll need a whistle, a small book to keep score and game notes, a flipping coin and your very own red and yellow cards. Now ask yourself, where do I get all of this stuff. Donít worry, your  instructor will help you locate a supplier.

Getting Games

Now that youíve bought your uniform and all the stuff, youíll need to talk to the Board assignors  who will schedule your games. Not sure who these people are, not to worry. Again, your  instructor will advise you on who the local assignors are.

Your First Year

Well, youíve been out on the fields for a year or two now and youíve learned how to issue cards, deal with the players, coaches and parents, and suffered through the hot and cold. Now what. Every year, you will be required to take a refresher examination to maintain your status as a Varsity official. You will also be required to attend rules interpretation, mechanics and clinic meetings offered by your local chapter. These meetings will keep you informed of all rule changes and refresh your memory on the basic laws of the game, not to mention the ability to swap stories with fellow referees.


In a nutshell, thatís what it takes to become a soccer referee. Of course the more games you do, the more your confidence will improve and the games will seem easier. One thing to remember is that we all have a bad game from time to time, so donít despair. Every Board has experienced referees, a rules interpreter, new officials instructor and Executive Committee to answer your questions and help you through any difficult times. These will be few and far between.

New Officials :  Your Local Maine Association Of Soccer Officials Representative

 Table of Contents