British American football would not be possible without the hard work and dedication of our referees and officials.

Officials perform the vital role of enabling our players to compete within the spirit of the sport through the effective application of its rules and laws.

With the continued increase in the popularity of American football, the demand for officials is growing across all of BAFA’s disciplines and leagues.

The officiating of the sport is organised by the British American Football Referees’ Association (BAFRA). You can learn more about them by visiting the BAFRA website.

The key to efficient refereeing is proper training. Below you can find out more about how to become a member of BAFRA.

The Qualification Structure

The Referees’ Association offers a development framework which comprises both on field experience and classroom and home-based learning.

It involves these key cornerstones:

  • The Associate Officials qualification / Flag Officials qualification

A two-day introductory course which provides the basics of officiating knowledge. It acts as both a fantastic entry point to officiating and as a platform for further progression. The Flag Officials qualification is a one-day course and is designed to provide a great introduction to the most accessible version of the game.

  • The Mentorship programme

The Mentorship programme combines on-field experience and classroom learning. Many prospective officials prefer to move into the first phase of a training and development programme which this programme offers. Mentors and senior officials will lead a step-by-step induction to enable new recruits to officiate in actual games. The Referees’ Association allocate new officials to games where an experienced official can mentor them. The programme typically lasts for ten games.

  • The Elite Officials programme

Once an official is firmly established and qualified, they then have the opportunity to progress to the Elite Officials Programme. This next stage provides officials with the chance to be considered for international fixtures and tournaments. It is considered to be the upper echelons of officiating.

Please click here or email to submit your interest in becoming a BAFA official.