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2023 Grassroots “New” Referee Course Instructions

New Grassroots Referee courses are being offered by the Wisconsin Soccer Referee Development Program (WisRef) for 2023 registration for a 2023 USSF Grassroots Referee license expiring 12/31/2023. The successful Referee candidate will have the opportunity to officiate games for the spring, summer and fall 2023 calendar year soccer seasons.

This course is for new, first time Referees that have not been previously registered as a Referee OR a previously registered Referee who has had a lapse in registration (2020 or prior lapse). Minimum age per US Soccer policy is 13 years old at the time of registering for the course.

WisRef & the WYSA have partnered in order to encourage players, parents, coaches and others to become a New Referee. WYSA is providing reimbursement of registration, course fees and background check fees for New or Lapsed Registration Referees (2020 or prior lapse) who successfully complete the requirements to become a US Soccer Referee for the 2023 registration period.

What do these two organizations ask in return? We ask that you commit to refereeing all of 2023 and registering again for 2024 at a minimum. We would also hope that you continue in 2025 and beyond.

Many clubs and districts also provide additional Referee incentives, for a minimum number of games worked in a season or other requirements. You will need to work with your local games Assignor for more information on those programs.

We hope to see you in a New Referee course and on the fields in 2023!

This is a 12 Hour Course

8 hours online US Soccer Learning Center course work (on your own)

       Creation of a WisRef GameOfficials account

4 hours WisRef In-Person Field Session (with Instructors)

We are moving away from Virtual on-line Zoom sessions and returning to In-Person Field Sessions at various locations around the state.  

After successful completion of the above, you will be registered as a new 2023 Grassroots Referee.

Steps to Register as a 2023 USSF Grassroots Referee

WisRef utilizes 2 platforms. Registration and learning are within the US Soccer Learning Center. Game assignments, after completing all requirements, will be in the WisRef GameOfficials platform. Steps, to be completed fully and in order:

1. Create a Referee profile in the US Soccer Learning Center: This profile or account is for the Referee, not the parent. Full name & mailing address is required; the name, address & primary email should be exactly the same as will be input into GameOfficials. Please note that school email addresses are sometimes problematic, so should be avoided.


If you are 18 or older, you will be prompted to pay for and complete a 2-year background check and complete the SafeSport module. If you turn 18 during the course process or during a registration period, you will be required to complete the background check and SafeSport in order to continue refereeing during the seasons.

2. After you create your account, pay the $70 US Soccer 2023 registration fee and WisRef course fee. Register in the following course: 2023 New Grassroots Referee – Assignment Course

3. Complete all US Soccer Learning Center required assignments in the following pathway: Courses/My Courses/Go to Classroom/Assignments. Remember to log out if you take a break from the training and continually save your progress. Chromebooks are not always compatible, may not load, save, or display properly, and may be incompatible with the Zoom program required later, henceforth, Chromebooks are not recommended.

4. Set up a GameOfficials account for game assignments in the WisRef GameOfficials assigning platform: (use this link). This account is for the Referee, not the parent. Full name & mailing address is required; the name, address & primary email should be exactly the same as was input into the Learning Center. Please make sure to save and double check to see that all information is listed, including full mailing address and a phone number. Please note that school email addresses are sometimes problematic, so should be avoided. There will not be any course work completed in GameOfficials (GO). GameOfficials is only for game assignments once you have been registered as a referee.

5. After completing steps 1 through 4, notify [email protected] to choose a date/time to attend a WisRef In-Person Field Session. You will be able to pick a session date and time from the list in her email reply. Session dates/times are also listed in the course details when you register for the NEW REFEREE COURSE.

* The In-Person Field Session time of 4 hours is 100% accurate. Referee candidates are required to be actively present and participate for the entire session. These sessions meet US Soccer requirements and failure to be present for the entire session will result in full attendance not being granted and your certification will not be processed.

*Signing up for the In-Person Field Session will be available after you complete the required Learning Center assignments and have created your WisRef Game Officials account – steps 1 through 4 above. You cannot reserve a spot for the In-Person Field Session until you complete these steps. If an In-Person Field session is near capacity, there are no guarantees that slots will be available by the time you finish steps 1 through 4. We strongly encourage Referee candidates to compete their assignments in the Learning Center well in advance of the In-Person Field Session they wish to attend. We reserve the right to cancel any scheduled In-Person Field Session for low attendance numbers. Referee Candidates will then be able to choose another date/time to attend.

* The deadline for choosing the In-Person Field Session is 48 hours before the start of the session. WisRef requires course rosters to be set by this deadline. Please be diligent if you desire a session for a particular date and time.

6. Attend the selected In-Person Field Session. The Field Session will start in the classroom and may move outdoors (weather permitting) or will be held at an indoor field or gym for training so please dress accordingly. The In-Person Field Sessions are interactive, and require active participation from all candidates. For Virtual sessions, if any are held, Instructors must be able to see and hear you throughout the Virtual session. Video MUST be on at all times and you must have the ability to mute/un-mute your microphone. There is a maximum of one referee per electronic device – no sharing, and attendance needs to be in a stationary, unobstructed, quiet environment and not in a vehicle of any kind, whether moving or stationary.

7. Once you pass all the requirements, you will be certified by the State Referee Administrator as a 2023 USSF Grassroots Referee. Your 2023 Referee badge will be mailed to you and you will be enabled in the WisRef GameOfficials platform for game assignments. Take this opportunity to make sure your mailing address is correct and consistent in both the US Soccer Learning Center and the WisRef GameOfficials. You will only receive one 2023 badge, so please be careful with it.

Reminder per 5 above, you must have steps 1. through 4. completed prior to requesting a Field or Virtual session.

Available Sessions

2/18/2023amEagle River
3/4/2023amChippewa Falls
3/5/2023pmMenomonee Falls
3/18/2023pmRichland Center
4/15/2023amRice Lake
4/15/2023amEagle River
4/16/2023pmNew Richmond