US SOCCER COACHING LICENSES

US Soccer provides a coaching education pathway for coaches at all coaching levels, from recreational soccer through to the professional ranks, with the provision of internationally recognized and endorsed (by FIFA) licensing courses.

The U.S. Soccer coaching education pathway consists of a series of licensing courses designed around coaching profiles and the related tasks a soccer coach is expected to carry out in a team environment. Differentiated by course level, the tasks are: coaching games, coaching training sessions, leading the player, leading the team and managing a performance environment, and leadership. Changes to the pathway came into effect in January 2018.

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The road from grassroots to professional coaching consists of a number of licenses, each becoming more in-depth as the level of the player to be coached increases. Experiential learning is a recurring theme throughout the pathway. Coaches undergo development periods between course meetings to allow for practical implementation of what has been learned away from their team environments. These periods of development also exist between course levels to allow for additional experiences to emphasize the continuation of the learning process.

U.S. Soccer has announced eight (8) new grassroots level coaching courses to be introduced in early 2018. These courses will be focused on empowering coaches through experiential learning and a player-centered approach. The course options will relate directly to small-sided games and the respective age-groups outlined in the Player Development Initiatives.

The new Grassroots Licensing Courses will consist of four (4) in-person experiences and four (4) online experiences. Prospective coaches will have the option to engage in any of these new courses – in any sequence – after completing a free introductory module provided by U.S. Soccer.

In addition to the eight (8) new opportunities, the D course has also been updated in accordance with the revamped approach at the grassroots level. “Over the last 12-months, U.S. Soccer has worked with its members to organize, study and pilot these new opportunities. This has been an immense project initiated by the Federation and its importance cannot be understated. The game is founded at the grassroots level; these courses will help ensure fun, enjoyable and developmentally appropriate environments.”

Concurrently with the roll out of the new courses, the current F and E courses will transition out of the U.S. Soccer Coaching Pathway. These licenses will still be recognized by U.S. Soccer and both certifications remain relevant as a means to advance within the pathway. As demonstrated in the past, member organizations will be empowered to organize and host the in-person grassroots courses and the updated D course on behalf of U.S. Soccer. More specific information on the newly formatted grassroots courses, including format and scheduling, will be released in early 2018.

 

Grassroots courses

Eight (8) new grassroots level coaching courses to be introduced in early 2018. These courses will be focused on empowering coaches through experiential learning and a player-centered approach. The course options will relate directly to small-sided games and the respective age-groups outlined in the Player Development Initiatives.

The new Grassroots Licensing Courses will consist of four (4) in-person experiences and four (4) online experiences. Prospective coaches will have the option to engage in any of these new courses – in any sequence – after completing a free introductory module provided by U.S. Soccer.

 

National D License

The National D License is a 40-45 hour course based around the US Soccer philosophy of holistic, reality based, experiential learning. The course consists of a preparation phase, instructional weekend one, developmental phase, and assessment weekend. The overall length of each course may vary from course to course based on facility and player requirements. The focus of this course is to facilitate the improvement of the Grassroots Coach in all 6 Tasks of a Coach: Coaching Games, Coaching Training Sessions, Managing the Performance Environment, Leading the Team, Leading the Player and Leadership. Coaches will also focus on learning how to design, execute and reflect on a P-P-P training session. Candidates that register for this course are expected to attend both meetings and complete a number of assignments before the first course meeting and during the development phase of the course.

Development Period:  The Development Period is the time in between course meeting one and two. It is vital that candidates have access to a team during this period so that they can practically apply what they learned during the first course meeting and complete their assignments.

Click here for the D License schedule. 

 Eligibility Requirements:  

The US Soccer Federation requires pre-requisites to take the 2018 D License course. A candidate will need to have completed one of the following:

1) Current National E License

2) Two In-Person Courses (one must be the 11v11) + 1 Online Course *

3) Two In-Person Courses (one must be the 11 vs 11) + F License

*Please note only 4 vs 4 online course is currently available.

National C License

An individual must have held the D License for 12 months to register for the C License. Designed to focus on core coaching competencies for those leading competitive youth soccer, the C course takes 130 or more hours and consists of two meetings separated by a development period, usually lasting two to three months. All licenses at the C level and above are administered and approved by U.S. Soccer Coaching Department instructors.

NATIONAL B License

The U.S. Soccer B License requires a comprehensive application from all eligible candidates who are at least 18 years of age. Each applicant must have held the C License for at least 12 months and be working with an 11v11 youth team. To complete the course, candidates dedicate more than 150 hours with three meetings separated by two development periods over four to five months. The National B License is the minimum standard for coaches in the U.S. Soccer Development Academy.

NATIONAL A-YOUTH License

The A-Youth License also requires a comprehensive application from all eligible candidates who must have held the B License for at least six months, and have access to a team of elite youth players in a high-performance environment. The course focuses on the development of the potential professional player. The course includes four meetings separated by three development periods and takes approximately five to six months to complete.

NATIONAL A-SENIOR License

The A-Senior License requires a comprehensive application from all interested candidates who must have held the B License for at least six months, and have experiences and access to a team of senior players in a high-performance, result driven environment. Coaches in this course should be working with professional players or potential professional players. The course consists of four meetings separated by three development periods and takes approximately five to six months to complete.

Pro License

The Pro License course is currently an invitation-based course and is the highest license offered in North America recognized by FIFA. Thirteen professional coaches completed the first Pro License in December 2016.