Referees Career Pathway

Touch Module Referee

Controlling module games at provincial level.

Level 1 Referee

Controlling module games and possible selection to Regional tournaments, Junior IPS and Secondary School National tournament.

Level 2 Referee

Controlling module games, Regional and Junior tournaments. Possible selection for Secondary School, Masters, Youth and Open National tournaments. Entry to Level 1 Referee coaching course.

Level 3 Referee

Eligible for all of the above and including selection as a National Referee Group Leader, Entry to Level 2 Referee coaching course, Course tutor, International exchanges and possible selection as a Youth World Cup Referee.

Level 4 Referee

Eligible for all of the above and including possible selection for all International World Cup events and any Elite tournaments or Trans Tasman series. International exchanges including coaching.

Referee Courses

If you would like more information or to attend a course please contact your local provincial director of referees.



The Course can be easily completed during an evening and is almost entirely theory. This course allows for “easy entry” into Touch Refereeing and is ideally suited for the beginner e.g.

  • Players
  • Juniors
  • Player/Referees
  • Coaches
  • Parents completed
  • Teachers
  • Students

This course is designed for:Anyone who is wishing to learn about the game of Touch.

Course Registration:The Course is now available to purchase online for $10.00. Upon payment you will be given access to a course booklet and the online testing component.

Course CostsOne-time charge of $10 payable by credit card (this allows the testing component to be accessed twice per user). Please review our Privacy Policy.

Course Duration:Approximately 2 ½ hours

Course Content:

  • Simplified Playing Rules for Touch
  • Basic Playing Rule Application
  • Basic Referee Equipment
  • Basic Referee Skills and Procedures
  • Basic Referee Signals
  • Online multi-choice questions to test your knowledge of this course

Course Qualification:Touch Module Referee course certificate upon successful completion of written test (certificate will be emailed to successful candidates within 10 working days of taking the course).

If you require technical assistance with the Online Touch Module Referee Course please contact Vanessa Smith, National Referee Co-ordinator, Touch New Zealand – Phone: 022 043 4572 / Email:




The Course:The Course is over one day and is almost totally theory.

This course is designed for:

  • Referees who have passed the Touch Module Referee Course
  • Referees who wish to expand their knowledge on aspects of Refereeing and the Playing Rules of Touch

Course Pre Requisites:Completed and passed Touch Module Referee course.

Course Duration:1 day –6-8 hours

Course Presenter:

  • Touch NZ Referee Advisory Panel Member
  • Qualified Level 1 Referee course presenter
  • Touch NZ Regional/Provincial Director of Referees
  • Qualified Referee Coaches (Assistants)

Course Content:

  • What makes a good referee
  • Characteristics of a good Touch Referee
  • Referee responsibilities
  • Referee Communication
  • Basic Fitness and Nutrition
  • Referee Positioning
  • Referee Systems
  • Scorecard Procedures
  • Advantage
  • Extra Time (Drop off)
  • Sin Bin
  • Player Discipline
  • The Principles behind specific Playing Rules
  • Specific Rule Interpretation and application
  • Written Examination – Multi Choice

Course Qualification:

  • Attend 1 day Level 1 Referee Course
  • Successfully complete Level 1 Referee written examination paper
  • Achieve an on field assessment through practical demonstration of Level 1 performance standards

Reward:Level 1 Referee Certificate (Green) and Level 1 Referee Badge (Green)

Course Resources:

  • Level 1 Referee course workbook and Level 1 Written examination paper
  • 8th Edition Rulebook
  • Course resources are free

This course will also:Increase future selection opportunities for Touch New Zealand Tournaments



The Course:The course is over two days and is almost entirely practical.

The Course is designed for:

  • Referees who have attended level 1 Referee course and successfully passed the Level 1 Referee written examination. (Achievement of Level 1 Badge is desirable but not essential)
  • Referees who wish to learn the fundamental practical skills of Refereeing
  • Referees who wish to learn how to solve technique and application problems

Course Duration:2 days – 6-8 hours each day

Course Presenters:

  • Touch NZ Referee Advisory Panel Member
  • Senior Referee Coaching Panel Members (qualified to level 1 Referee coaching certificate and seeking level 2 Referee coaching qualification)

Course Content:

  • Referee Communication – Theory
  • Referee Team Building
  • Goal Setting – Theory
  • Whistle and Signals – Practical
  • All aspects of Referee Positioning – Practical
  • Dual and Triple Referee Systems – Practical
  • The Touchdown Procedure – Practical
  • Application of the Penalty – Practical
  • Referee Communication – Practical
  • Setting and Controlling five (5) metres – Practical
  • Application of advantage – Practical
  • Fitness and Preparation – Theory
  • Injury Prevention and Injury treatment – Theory
  • Written Examination – Take home

This course will also:

  • Enhance progression to a high level as a Touch Referee
  • Increase future selection opportunities for Touch NZ tournaments
  • Assist entry into the Touch NZ Referee Coaching and Course Presenter programme
  • A must regardless of the level the Referee wishes to aspire and all Referees who participate in the Touch NZ Referee training and development program should be encouraged to attend

Course Qualification:

  • Attend 2 day level 2 Referee course
  • Successfully complete Level 2 Referee written examination paper (75% pass required)
  • Achieve an on field assessment through practical demonstration of Level 2 performance standards

Reward:Level 2 Referee Certificate (Blue) and Level 2 Referee Badge (Blue)

Course Resources:

  • Level 2 Referee course manual
  • Level 2 Referee written examination paper

National Certificate in Sport-Officiating – Level 3

What is this National Certificate in Sport?

Starting in September 2014, Touch NZ entered into an agreement with Skills Active Aotearoa, whereby our current Level One and Level Two referee courses have now been benchmarked to NZQA standards.  This means that our referees who come to meet those standards will be cross credited to achieve a National Certificate in Sport-Officiating - Level 3, providing they have attained the age of 16 years.

Who are Skills Active Aotearoa

Skills Active Aotearoa is New Zealand’s Industry Training Organisation (ITO) for the recreation, sport and

fitness industries. They are a government-funded organisation and their role is to develop and facilitate

world-class, nationally recognised qualifications that meet the needs of your business.

That means providing employers and business owners with solutions for qualifying their staff through

recognising the training and experience they provide their staff on the job. These solutions provide value

to their business and a competitive edge in the marketplace.


Where does this National Certificate fit into TNZ Referee training and development

  • Touch Module Referee Course (TMRC), a preliminary course offered at provincial level
  • Referee Level One Course, a one-day workshop with a multi choice exam
  • TNZ Referee Level One badge
  • Referee Level Two Course
  • TNZ referee level two take- home written exam
  • The National Certificate in Sport-Officiating
  • TNZ Referee Level Two badge
  • TNZ Level Three badge
  • TNZ Level Four badge


What are the benefits to TNZ Referees

 The benefits accruing to TNZ Referees in gaining this National Certificate are manifold

  • It is a tertiary qualification supported by the New Zealand Qualification Authority (NZQA)
  • It is a formal acknowledgement of specialised skills and training
  • It is a qualification demonstrating skill sets desirable across all sports
  • Aligns with and supports referee and officiating development
  • Demonstrates to future employers you have some of the skills to be an effective manager
  • Many of these skills are transferrable to follow other career paths


How do you enrol for the National Certificate in Sport

  • You must be registered as a TNZ referee within any province in New Zealand
  • You must complete the Skills Active Training Agreement (form attached)
  • You must submit a proof of identity that you are a NZ citizen or have NZ residency


Requirements to achieve the National Certificate in Sport

  • You must be a qualified TNZ Level One badge holder
  • You must have attended a TNZ Level 2 workshop
  • You must have achieved a minimum of 75% pass mark in the Level 2 written examination within two (2) years of the Level 2 course date you attended
  • You must have completed at least two (2) full seasons as a Touch NZ referee
  • You must complete a match report for which you are a referee
  • You must complete a self evaluation of a game in which you have refereed
  • You must have used a Touch NZ Diary


Existing L2, L3, L4 referees, who qualified as a Level 2 referee prior to September 2014

Skills Active NZ have very kindly offered these referees (you) an opportunity to also achieve this National Certificate in Sport-Officiating at NO COST providing:

  • You complete the Skills Active Training Agreement (form attached)
  • You must submit a proof of identity that you are a NZ citizen or have NZ residency
  • You must complete a small take home exam to attest competency in those unit standards which were not part of our processes when you were becoming a Level 2 referee
  • You must complete a match report for which you are a referee
  • You must complete a self evaluation of a game in which you have refereed
  • You must have used a Touch NZ Diary
  • You must have been refereeing continuously since achieving your Level 2 badge

If this is something that interests you, please respond to this email directly to Vanessa, who will send some prescribed reading material and the exam to which you must achieve a minimum of 75%.  Your Provincial Director will attest to your continuing on field refereeing.

Some of you have already completed the Skills Active Training Agreement but not yet completed the other requirements.

Once all the above requirements are met, we will submit your name to Skills Active Aotearoa who will in due course issue you with the National Certificate in Sport- Officiating.   In addition to this the unit standards you have now achieved will be listed on your NZQA Record of Achievement.

Be in quick to enroll as this generous offer from Skills Active Aotearoa may not be on the table for much longer.


Record of Achievement All referees who complete the Skills Active Training Agreement will be allocated a unique National Student Number (NSN).   Referees who are still at college will already have their own NSN.

When you achieve this National Certificate in Sport, the 43 credits, as indicated above, will be automatically added to your record of achievement. 

Provided your current NCEA Level course has included sufficient achievement in both numeracy and literacy credits, some of the credits obtained in the National Certificate in Sport can be used to get you sufficient credits for you to achieve either your NCEA 2 or NCEA 3 certificates.

For referees who are considering applying for career positions, your record of achievement can be printed out and pasted into your Curriculum Vitae (CV) for submission with your job application.  The Unit Standards achieved will be displayed in full for potential employers to view.

Proof of Identity

You will need to carefully follow the instructions as listed at the top of the Skills Active Training Agreement, particularly if you do not have a current NZ Passport.

This proof of identity needs to be submitted at the same time as your completed Skills Active Training Agreement.

For more information please email Vanessa.