Prospective Officials

NOTE: Information below is subject to change, pending the most current COVID-19 information available at the time. For in-person sessions, appropriate safety precautions will be followed based on local, state, and federal health regulations, guidelines, and mandates.

First, sign up online to attend an OVR New Referee Clinic! Online registration opens in early fall.

  1. Clinic Registration & Fee. This season's classroom clinics are "virtual" via an online webinar service. There are two mandatory sessions, each lasting approximately two hours. Clinic registration must be completed online at this link at least 48 hours prior to attendance New Official Signup Page. There is a $35 non-refundable registration fee, which covers both sessions and is paid online via PayPal. You must submit the Prospective Official's Data Sheet via email to Brian Hemelgarn ( and Josh Hall ( Prior to the first clinnic session. Prospective Official Data Sheet.
  2. USAV Membership. To participate in USA Volleyball events (including our training program outlined below), USAV membership is required. USAV membership provides liability insurance and secondary medical coverage to each member, among other things. The total cost of a USAV standard adult membership is $62 - $20 USAV, $42 OVR, plus background check (see #3 below).
  3. Background Checks. USA Volleyball conducts mandatory background checks on all adult members, 18 years of age or older. The cost is $31 and is good for two seasons, so it only needs to be paid every other year. Regardless of any other background screen you may have, the USAV background check is required. The background check must be completed prior to attending one of our on-court practical training sessions but it does not need to be completed prior to attending the classroom clinic.
  4. SafeSport. In conjunction with the United States Olympic & Paralympic Committee, all USAV members over the age of 18, including referees, must complete SafeSport training. This program's goal is to safeguard athletes from bullying, hazing, harassment, physical/emotional/sexual abuse and sexual misconduct. General information can be found at: , and also at: SafeSport must be completed prior to attending one of our on-court practical training sessions but it does not need to be completed prior to attending the classroom clinic. There is not cost for this training program.

    After completing your USAV membership registration, you will immediately have access to USAV's online training modules (#5 below), even if you have not yet completed #3 and #4 (above). There are designated modules that are required to complete your certification, but they are not required to be completed prior to attending one of our clinics (#1 above). You should make every effort to complte the New Professional Referee Training course in the USAV Academy prior to participating in Session I.

  5. USAV Academy. Being a USAV member affords all prospective and existing referees with access to USA Volleyball's online training academy, which includes rules and scoring exams. The library of training modules is extensive, and a list of required modules will be provided to you upon clinic enrollment and USAV membership registration. If possible, you should complete these modules online prior to attending an OVR clinic. Rules and scoring exam instructions will be provided at the clinic.

    Once you have attended a clinic, sign up for on-court training. You are officially an OVR-USAV referee candidate!

  6. Training Sign-Up and Fee. At the conclusion of each classroom clinic (#1 above), prospective referees who wish to continue with the certification process must attend an on-court training session, typically in mid- or late January. Dates, sites, and times for the training/evaluation tournaments will be distributed in advance so that you can plan ahead. The cost for the on-court training day (8 hours) is $115 and must be paid on-site at the conclusion of your classroom clinic. Refunds will not be granted to referee candidates who do not consequently fulfill their training/evaluation tournament assignment, i.e., a "no show". Withdrawal from an on-court training assignment must be done no later than Wednesday (11:59 pm ET) the week of your assignment, to receive a refund of the $115.
  7. Practical On-court Training As a referee candidate, you will receive first and second referee training and scorer training during the first wave of the tournament. For the afternoon wave, you will receive observations and evaluations as R1, R2 and scorer to determine your preparedness to receive a USAV referee certification. This last step is pass/fail, but we have an overwhelming success rate!.

    So, in a nutshell...

  8. Summary of Requirements & Fees.
    • $93 USAV membership registration and background screen ($20 USAV, $42 OVR, $31 background check); non-refundable; current USAV members do not need to re-pay these fees, i.e., coaches, chaperones, players
    • SafeSport training - free; must be completed prior to attending on-court session
    • Online training modules (ideally prior to attending a clinic); rules/scoring exams (after attending a clinic); modules & exams are required to complete certification process
    • $35 - New referee clinic (includes USAV Rulebook, lunch, handouts); non-refundable; submit Prospective Official Data Sheet. and choose on-court training date(s)
    • $115 - Practical on-court training; refundable for any candidate not accepted for any reason, and any candidate who withdraws as noted in #5 above
    • Referee uniform & equipment - cost varies based on items purchased; details will be provided to all prospective referee candidates in advance of on-court training session
    • State laws also require a Concussion Awareness course for sports officials; the course is free. Details will be provided at our clinics. If you have already completed this course, simply provide a copy of the certificate of completion after you have successfully completed our referee certification program.

    If you have specific questions about officiating in the Ohio Valley Region, contact: Josh Hall, OVR New Official Development Coordinator ( or Brian Hemelgarn, OVR Officials Chair (


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