Upgrading your referee grade is beneficial to aspiring referees and referees seeking more challenging matches and opportunities. For example: Upgrading from a Grade 7 Referee to a Grade 6 Referee would identify this referee to all assignors as an experienced and able referee that can comfortably manage top competitive youth level games and adult amateur matches. It would also identify to assignors this referee may likely be considered to participate in Regional and National competitive youth level and amateur level competitions. Assignors are often far more willing to assign a more challenging match to a Grade 6 referee, than they might a Grade 8 or 7  referee.

Generally, the higher the Grade (the lower the number), then the assignments are generally better, more challenging, and may even pay more as a Grade 7 and/or Grade 6 than they would for a Grade 8.

CNRA and U.S. Soccer encourages all referees to Upgrade once they feel their referee skills, experience and knowledge of the laws have developed and advanced enough to meet the criteria of managing more challenging games.

If you are ready to submit a Request for a Formal Assessment Click here for instructions:



FORMAL ASSESSMENTS are conducted only by a licensed assessor who observes a team of officials during an entire match. After the match, the assessor provides feedback (both verbal and written) to each referee and also submits the written assessment to the referee administration (e.g., CNRA) on each referee’s strengths, and areas and suggestions for improvement. An assessment is a very useful tool to help the referee identify those areas in which they do well, and those areas where improvement can be made to strengthen the referee’s performance and suggestions as to how to achieve those improvements. Formal assessments also help the referee administration determine if the referee should be promoted in grade and/or assigned/offered higher-level games.

Formal assessments are required when a Grade 7 referee wants to upgrade from their current Grade 7 to the next higher Grade 6. Additionally, formal assessments are required annually for USSF Grades 6 and 5 (State) referees to maintain their grade. USSF Grades 8 and 7 referees are not required to have annual maintenance assessments to maintain their current grade licenses.



FORMAL ASSESSMENTS: Formal assessments are required for some referee grade maintenance and upgrade.  These assessments follow specific criteria and must be completed online by the assessor.  All online assessments are completed in CNRA.gameofficials.net and can be accessed by logging into your account and clicking on “After Games”. Others with access to your assessment results are the assessor, the Regional Referee Coordinator, State Director of Assessment, State Referee Administrator and the U.S. Soccer Referee Department.
  • Grade 6 Upgrade or Maintenance Assessment: This is for Grade 7 Referees seeking to Upgrade to Grade 6 or Maintaining Grade 6 by successfully demonstrating their abilities in a match that meets the criteria for a ratable competition.
  • Grade 5 Upgrade or Maintenance Assessment: This is for Grade 6 Referees seeking to Upgrade to Grade 5 or Maintaining Grade 5 by successfully demonstrating their abilities in a match that meets the criteria for a ratable competition.