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Referees or umpires officiate at sporting events, observing the actions of participants to ensure that the sport is played within the rules. They use personal experience and knowledge of a sport, together with the framework of established guidelines and rules, to resolve disputes.

In many sporting codes 'electronic eyes' or video cameras are now used to assist the referee in making decisions, such as at tennis matches. Referees' decisions are generally regarded as the final word in sporting events and, in certain sports such as soccer, cricket and rugby, serious penalties are inflicted on players who question or challenge referees.

Depending on the level of sport being officiated, be it amateur or professional, referees and umpires may only do this part-time and hold down other jobs between matches, as the role of referee may not be paid in amateur sport.

Satisfying Aspects
- working outdoors
- possibilities of meeting professional and famous sportspeople
- relatively stress-free working environment
- having the authority to make decisions that may result in a team winning or losing

Demanding aspects
- working in various weather conditions
- coping with rude or unreasonable players
- occasionally making 'the wrong call'

A referee should:
- be physically fit;
- have a passion for, and in-depth knowledge of the sport in which he is officiating;
- be alert;
- have good perception and observation skills;
- be able to make sound and unbiased judgements;
- have the courage to make decisions quickly under pressure.

School Subjects
No specific requirements.

Compulsory Subjects: None
Recommended Subjects: None

The aspiring referee needs to follow the training programme stipulated by the body or association that regulates the particular sport.

- Sport controlling bodies and associations