While most states require only a high school diploma to work as a referee, some states require additional training. Referees must also have extensive knowledge of the rules and conduct of a particular sport and a willingness to learn new rules as necessary.
Those interested in working as high school referees must register with local athletic associations. Referees may also have to complete training courses that include how to interact with players and how to make sports calls. Training courses also provide a thorough review off all the rules and regulations associated with a particular sport. Additional yearly or bi-annual training sessions may be required to review new or updated rules. Additional courses in first aid, CPR and safety may be required.
To advance, referees must prove the ability to make fair and sound judgements on a consistent basis. Referees may be considered for college level positions after working at the high school level for a few years. Some professional sports associations provide specialized training to those with ample experience working at both high school and professional levels. Professional referees complete extensive training. For example, professional baseball umpires usually begin in the minor leagues. After seven or more years, umpires are promoted to the major leagues.