HOW DO I BECOME A USAV OFFICIAL?
Following are steps required to become certified as an official in the Great Lakes Region of USA Volleyball. Please review these steps and if you have additional questions, please contact:
Carefully consider the resources required before embarking on the certification process, and understand that certification as an official does not guarantee availability of paid assignments.
Procedure for becoming certified as a USA Volleyball Official:
- Register as a member of the Great Lakes Region, USAV through the region website, http://www.greatlakesvolleyball.org. Please note that an annual background screening, at an additional fee, is required for all officials working Junior events. This screening must be current for all officials before they take the court at a Juniors event. Note that screening must be done through this process. Background screens done through other government or private organizations are not accepted. All certified officials must be a member in good standing of the Great Lakes Region, USA Volleyball.
- Review training materials at http://www.volleyballreftraining.com/powerpoints.php
Attend a regional training clinic. Sites and dates are listed at http://www.greatlakesvolleyball.org. If you received certification in another USAV region, please ask your previous Officials’ Chair to send information regarding your standing in that Region.
On-court practical evaluation will take place at a sanctioned tournament. In order to prepare, review the training materials in step 1 above. Also it is recommended that you volunteer your time to practice at a club practice or as an R2 at a local tournament. New officials must be evaluated and receive a passing rating on at least two matches as the first referee and on one match as a second referee. Candidates must also complete requirements to become a certified scorekeeper. For training and evaluation matches, prospective officials are not required to have the official uniform, but are required to wear clothing and have equipment similar to that of professional referees - navy blue slacks (no jeans), white polo shirt, white socks, white gym shoes, dark lanyard, dark whistle, red & yellow cards and a flipping coin. Since the evaluations are pass/fail, prospective officials are not required to purchase new uniform clothing until they have successfully completed the process.
Take the online referee and scorekeeper tests. Once you have attended a regional clinic and passed the on court evaluation and passed the written test, you will be able to join the officials assigning system. Register on line.
Once a candidate has completed the certification process, they will be certified as a Provisional USAV referee, and must recertify annually. After a minimum of two seasons as a Provisional referee, they may apply for Regional certification status.
Certified officials are required to wear the official USAV uniform for officials when working at sanctioned events. The uniform consists of: white "Certified Volleyball Official" polo shirt (short- or long-sleeved) or the official sweatshirt, official sweater or vest, dark navy blue slacks, black or blue belt, and solid white socks and gym shoes. The slacks should be polyester or a polyester-cotton blend. Avoid slacks that are 100% cotton, as they fade quickly, and consequently, they do not look professional. The shoes must be solid white (no colored logos), as well as the socks. It is best to purchase a pair of shoes that you will use exclusively for officiating.
Assignments for all Great Lakes Region Windy City Power League events in the Great Lakes Region are made through our assigning system. Volleyball officials are independent contractors and are not guaranteed assignments. Each sanctioned event has a Tournament Director who is responsible for assigning referees for their event. THERE IS NO GUARANTEE THAT ANY OFFICIAL WILL BE ASSIGNED MATCHES DURING THE SEASON. Due to the number of assignments available vs. the number of officials, opportunities to work events will be limited. Officials with prior experience and higher rankings will be given first priority for events.
For those wishing to pursue certification, advancement and assignment to Great Lakes Region events, the following activities are encouraged.
- These materials introduce the rules, interpretations, mechanics, best practices and professionalism that are all part of being successful as a USAV official.
- Send a brief resume of your volleyball officiating experience and a list of three volleyball references to email@example.com
- Be a student of the game: know the rules and keep up to date with current interpretations.
- Be professional: look your best and behave according to the standards outlined in USAV training materials.
- Look for opportunities to practice your officiating. Officials improve through working matches. Since assigned matches are limited, look for volunteer opportunities with local club scrimmages and as an R2 at local sanctioned events. These activities will increase your experience as a referee and your exposure with officials and tournament/event management.
- Seek feedback and be open to receiving it. Work with other more experienced officials and ask for tips for improving your game. Be receptive when the feedback is given, even if you don’t agree. Take in the comments and reflect on them. Being able to use that information to improve is an important part of being a certified referee.
- Apply for additional formal evaluations at region events when the opportunity is available. Again, it is important to be receptive to all feedback from ratings and evaluations.
- Attend any and all training opportunities that are offered in the region and make use of the excellent online training from USA Volleyball.
Good luck in pursuing volleyball referee certification. The process requires dedication, time, expense and hard work, but can be very rewarding for those who choose to invest their time and energy in the process.