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Gloucester County ASA

Promoting the development of ALL aquatic disciplines throughout the Gloucester County area

Swimming Officials

A Guide to Swimming Officials – by Neil Harper

At all galas you must have officials. Dependent on the type of gala, the officials need to be qualified.

  • If the Gala is “Licensed” to level 1 or 2, then all officials need to be licensed and qualified to that level to fulfil their role.
  • Level 3 meets – the lead referee needs to be qualified to that level, with all other officials being members of the ASA
  • Level 4 meets - the referee needs to hold the qualification of a Judge 2S, with all other officials being members of the ASA Qualifications to become an official (with the exception of the referee) is centred around competency based training.

Firstly the candidate will attend a theory session with a nominated tutor, and then they go to galas where they are mentored by a qualified person. When the candidate feels that they have gained sufficient experience in that skill, they are assessed (practically and verbally), and if successful then become qualified to carry out that task on poolside. Once the minimum qualification is achieved, the candidate can apply to become a licensed official.


Judge 1 – this allows you to act as a timekeeper and/or inspector of turns. This involves two theory sessions and poolside experience whilst being mentored.

Judge 2 – Must hold Judge 1 qualification and allows you to undertake role of inspector of stroke or finish judge in addition to J1 functions. Involves one theory session then poolside experience whilst being mentored.

Judge 2S (starter) – Must hold J2 qualification and be able to evidence at least twenty hours poolside duties at J2 level since qualifying. Involves one theory session then poolside mentoring. Candidate cannot be mentored at level 1 or 2 licensed meet.

Referee - The only qualification which involves a written exam. Candidates must have held the J2S qualification for a minimum of twelve months before they apply to sit the exam. Study then takes ten months with a nominated tutor. The exam is normally held on the first Saturday in November. The exam has two papers, theory and race results. The pass mark in both is 80%. Additionally, the candidate undertakes poolside training with a mentor, and having successfully passed the written paper, is then subject to a poolside assessment.

If you require any further information or have any questions, contact the Gloucester County ASA Officials Manager Neil Harper at