Scroll To Top
Swim Ontario has moved! Our new address is 1 Concorde Gate, Suite 200B, North York, ON M3C3N6
Congratulations to Kylie Masse on her World Record in the 100 back! 58.10!


Level I & II Clinics

Deck evaluations for positions other than referee may be requested after the clinic has been completed, the questionnaire answered and the official has been mentored for a minimum one or two sessions in the position to be assessed.

There is no substitution for on-deck experience.  The classroom can only touch some of the situations you will encounter as an official.  Candidates should feel comfortable making decisions on their own before asking for an on-deck evaluation.  Some positions may require more mentoring sessions.  As an example, the Stroke and Turn clinic covers several positions on deck, and experience in those different positions is key to obtaining an overall understanding.  Level IV & V Referees will only sign the Official Certification Card for successful deck evaluations where candidates have shown competency and confidence in the position. 

  • The position of Inspector of Turn and Judge of Stroke requires practice at all 3 possible positions on the deck (Turn Judge at start end, Turn Judge at turn end and Judge of Stroke).  It is recommended to begin mentoring as a turn judge before mentoring as a stroke judge. 
  • It is important to gain experience as a Chief Finish Judge before you begin tackling the Chief Judge Electronics position. One of the on-deck evaluations must be as a Chief Finish Judge.   Learning the “clock operations” is also an asset to the Chief Judge Electronics position. 
  • The Meet Manager position should be mentored starting with smaller meets such as In-house competitions and one day development swim meets.   Your first multi-session competition should be with a mentor before requesting on-deck evaluations.
  • Meet Manager deck evaluation:  the candidate should be named in the meet package, should participate in the development of the meet package and the entries and should also participate in the lead-up activities and preparation including entries processing and communications with Coaches (in addition to activities at the meet itself and taking a prime role for sessions).

Deck evaluations can be obtained at sanctioned Invitational and Provincial competitions that have minimum 2 to 2.5 hours long sessions. The Referee position on-deck evaluations or assessments should have minimum 3 hours sessions. On deck evaluations are signed by Level IV or V officials. Although Time Trials, In House Competitions and High School swim meets are valuable for on-deck experience, deck evaluations cannot be obtained at these events. Not all requests for deck evaluations can be granted.

For each positions, on-deck evaluations must be at two different swim meets, however, more than one on-deck evaluations can be obtained at the same swim meet provided they are for different positions.

  • Bring your Official Certification Card with you when you wish to have an on-deck evaluation done
  • It is recommended that it is kept in a Ziploc bag to keep it dry.
  • Inform the session referee BEFORE the start of the session that you require an on-deck evaluation. 
  • Not all on-deck evaluations requests can be granted.
  • Once the on-deck evaluation has been completed (end of session) please see the session referee.  If successful, the referee will initial and date the appropriate position on the Certification Card.

Please make sure to keep your Club Officials Chair informed of your successful on-deck evaluations in order for them to enter successful evaluations into the Swimming Canada registration system.

Log of Meets and Clinics

Once an official reaches Level II certification it is strongly recommended that they begin keeping track of all meets worked including what positions and also clinics they have instructed in a log.  Any format is acceptable however, electronic format is advised.  A template Excel spreadsheet can be found HERE to help the official get started.

Guidelines for Senior & Master officials regarding on-deck evaluations

On-deck evaluations for all positions, except Referee, are allowed at sanctioned competitions (excluding Time Trials and In House competitions) with 2 hours or more of swim time.  The on-deck evaluation or assessment for the referee position needs to be 3 hours or more.  High school meets are to be used to gain experience but on-deck evaluations will not be accepted.  

  • A Level III official who is assigned as Session Referee can grant on-deck evaluations for Level I position (timekeeper).
  • A Level IV official who is mentoring/observing or in the role of Session Referee can grant on-deck evaluations for Level I and Level II positions.
  • A Level V official who is mentoring/observing or in the role of Session Referee can grant on-deck evaluations for all positions including Referee (if not assigned as Session Referee).

Level III Evaluation Process

Once you have all the requirements listed in Certification Process and the Officials Card are completed the official must

  • Inform your Club Official Chair (COC) / Administrator (COA) and ROR 
  • Make sure your information is up to date on the Swimming Canada registration system by submitting the following documents to COA & ROR
    • Officials Card
  • The ROR will review the Officials Card and may ask for additional information 
  • The COA can then enter any missing requirements for Level III from documentation into the system such as evaluations from deck work or clinics. 
  • Your ROR will forward documentation to the Provincial Officials Administrator ( with recommendation for Level III certification
  • Request a meeting with your ROR
  • Swim Ontario will approve your certification in consultation with the ROR

The ROR will present the official with their level III orange badge at the meeting or presentation at a swim meet.  If requested by the official, a mentor official will be  assigned for the next stages of Senior and Master Officials requirements.  Any new Level III will also receive a Swim Ontario nameplate.


Level IV & V Evaluation Process

By the time a candidate has completed the requirements for Level III, the motivation to continue should come primarily from the candidate. The focus should be directed to self‐improvement through travel afield in the region and the province, and should also be active in providing more help to upcoming officials at the local club.

It is important in this first year of active service, that the candidate gain as much experience as they can in not only referee roles, but other deck roles.  They should gain experience with a number of different types of meets from one session development meets, to multi-day meets that have heats/finals.  The more diversified experience the candidate gains as a referee and continues to gain as an official in other roles on deck, will serve them positively in their development as an effective and successful Referee. 

The Mentor Referee (Level V official) will help with preparing the candidate for their on-deck evaluations as a Referee and/or Starter.  Using the Referee Assessment Form (formally known as Personal Training Record) the Mentor Referee will prepare the candidate for their evaluations but will not conduct the evaluations.  

Once the Level IV or V candidate is ready to begin their evaluations, they need to contact the Provincial Officials Administrator (POA) at and their ROR.  They will be required to submit the following doc umentation

One of the submitted successful referee assessment for Level V candidates must be from an out-of-region competition.  Funding is available to Level IV and V candidates seeking out-of-region experience.

The POA will consult with the ROR as to the readiness of the candidate, however the final decision regarding evaluation rests with the candidate.  The POA will arrange for evaluations to be conducted with the Competition Coordinator, ROR and Evaluators.  The formal assessment for Level IV candidates requires them to work 2 sessions as Referee.  The formal evaluation for Level V candidate requires them to work two sessions.  The first session as a Referee and if successful the second evaluation can be either as a Referee or Starter.  These two formal Assessments will be conducted by two Level V officials.  The level IV evaluation can have two level V evaluators from the same region and the level V evaluation will require one evaluator to be out of region.

Once the evaluations are successful and completed,

  • the ROR or evaluators will present the official with their level IV green badge / level V blue badge
  • one of the evaluators must send the following documents to the Provincial Officials Administrator, ROR and candidate
    • Referee Assessment Forms signed (Level IV)
    • Starter Assessment Form (if used for Level V) signed
    • Completed certification form for Level IV or V

Swim Ontario has final approval for all Level IV certification and Swim Ontario will recommend for approval any level V candidates to the Official Competition and Rules Committee (OCRC) who has final approval for all Level V certification.  Swim Ontario will ensure the Swimming Canada Level V certification form is sent to Swimming Canada for review by the OCRC.

Once the national office certifies a candidate for Master Official certification, a congratulatory letter and Master Official certification card will be sent to the candidate from the national office.