American River Youth Soccer League
 

National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) Coaching School Information


 

The NSCAA Coaching Academy is the benchmark of the training and continuing education of soccer coaches. Designed to meet the needs of the coach at all levels of the game, the Academy program offers instruction in tactics, conditioning and overall knowledge of the game from a staff comprised of the best coaches in the United States.

The Academy program is intended to meet the educational needs of the NSCAA membership through an atmosphere of cooperation and support from the instructional staff. The objective is to help participants teach soccer through a better knowledge of the game, a greater appreciation of its techniques and tactics and an enhanced appreciation of the physical and psychological demands of the sport.


Academy Educational Offerings
The NSCAA Coaching Academy offers a wide range of educational opportunities to enhance the knowledge of soccer coaches. Following is a brief summary of those offerings:

Non-Residential Courses - These entry level courses include the State, Regional and Advanced Regional Diplomas and are conducted on a demand basis throughout the country.

Residential Courses - These courses are scheduled at predetermined sites around the country over a one week period of time. This includes the upper level National, Advanced National and Premier Diplomas, as well as the National Youth Diploma course.

Goalkeeping Institute - The Academy launched its Goalkeeping Institute in 1998 to focus attention on the education of coaches working with goalkeepers as a special and unique position to train. Currently, Level I (six hours) and Level II (eight hours) courses are offered.

Special Topic Courses and Clinics - The Academy Committee will conduct special topic courses periodically in different parts of the country, as well as special clinics at various events, including the annual NSCAA Convention. For further information, contact the NSCAA National Office.

Symposiums - The NSCAA conducts annual symposiums in conjunction with the NCAA Division I men’s and women’s championships.

International Courses and Exchanges - NSCAA actively works with associations in other countries in the development of international learning opportunities.

College Credit - The opportunity to receive three hours of college credit is available for both the National and Advanced National Diploma courses through the University of Colorado. The tuition fee is $195 and must be paid at the course. A packet of information, including an application for credit, transcript form, evaluation and an envelope to be returned to the staff director, will be distributed at each course site. Refunds will not be issued to candidates who fail a course. For further information, please contact Jay Engeln, NSCAA Executive Committee, at 719-442-1534.


Residential Courses

NATIONAL DIPLOMA COURSE
The National Diploma is a 50-hour course designed to meet the needs of more experienced coaches, particularly those coaching at the high school level and above, or youth coaches with previous certification and a number of years working with the developing player.

The overall objective of the National Diploma course is to acquaint the coach with the needs of the American soccer player and provide the coach with an organized and progressive methodology of coaching those needs. Basic technical and tactical knowledge are the central themes of the course in a 6 v. 6 models. The course also includes sessions on the teaching process, psychological skills training and laws of the game. Participants are provided a notebook which outlines the course content and includes valuable resource material. Testing includes oral, written and practical (coaching) evaluations.

Applicants must be at least 21 years of age. Acceptance into the course requires an NSCAA Regional Diploma, the USSF "D" license or a similar license from another national federation that is a member of FIFA, and/or at least five years of coaching experience at the appropriate level. A USSF "C" license is accepted as automatic qualification for the National Diploma course.

ADVANCED NATIONAL DIPLOMA COURSE
The Advanced National Diploma is a 50-hour course designed for the experienced coach working with advanced players, with an emphasis on training those players within a team concept designed to produce a successful environment. The 8 v. 8 models is the main focus. Candidates are provided a notebook which outlines the course and includes valuable resource material. The curriculum includes team organization and training, advanced methodology, analysis and understanding systems of play, a focus on tactics within thirds of the field, technical position overviews, match analysis and the psychological aspect of coaching. Testing includes oral, written and practical (coaching) evaluations.

Acceptance into the course requires an NSCAA National Diploma or the USSF "B" license. A minimum of 10 years of coaching experience at an appropriate level also is suggested. Licenses from foreign federations will not be accepted for admittance into the Advanced National Diploma course. A USSF "B" license is accepted as automatic qualification for this course.

PREMIER COURSE
The Premier Course is the pinnacle of the NSCAA educational program. The 40-hour course is designed to teach advanced methodology that has full-sided soccer (11 v. 11) as the focal point. Coaches are provided a course notebook and curriculum. The course content includes a thorough examination of different systems of play, including technical and tactical implications; 11 v. 11 topics, including coaching in the game, phase play and shadow play; and a leadership component including team management, personal development and the coach's role in developing the sport of soccer in his/her community. Testing is an option of those selected for the course. A participant may choose not to test (audit) the course and receive a certificate of participation rather than the diploma.

Eligibility for the Premier Course requires the applicant to be an NSCAA member and hold the Advanced National Diploma and/or the USSF "A" license. Additional factors, such as coaching and playing background, community leadership and contribution to the game, are considered. Applications are screened by the Director of Coaching and enrollment is limited for each course. A special form is available though Soccer Journal in the July/August (for winter courses) and January/February (for summer courses) issues and is required for application to the Premier Course. Forms also are available during the application period from the NSCAA National Office or can be downloaded through the links provided at the top of this page. No applications are accepted after established deadlines.

NATIONAL YOUTH DIPLOMA COURSE
The National Youth Diploma Course is designed for the youth coach working with players age 5-12. The overall objective of the course is to help coaches create the optimal learning environment for players at this developmental age. Emphasis is placed on the basic methods of coaching youth and understanding the physiological and psychological differences of coaching children. The course emphasizes the game of soccer as the teacher and the coach as the facilitator. The curriculum focuses on the organization of a practice session, teaching proper technique, team management, basic concepts of attack and defense, small-sided games and understanding the Laws of the Game. Information about safety, prevention and care of injuries also is provided.

The National Youth Diploma is a 30-hour course held over four days, featuring both classroom lectures (theory) and on field instruction (practical). The course utilizes appropriate age group demonstrators for most field sessions. There is no testing involved in the course, although coaches are allowed an opportunity to conduct a training session with feedback from the staff. Each person completing the course is awarded the National Youth Diploma certificate.

Applicants must be at least 18 years of age at the time of application. Previous coaching certification, such as the NSCAA State or Regional Diploma, and/or the USSF "E" or "F" license, is strongly suggested. A waiver of previous coaching certifications will be considered on an individual basis if the applicant has been coaching for a number of years.


Non-Residential Courses

STATE DIPLOMA
The State Diploma is a five-hour course directed toward the person newly involved in coaching soccer. It is designed to help coaches working with players in the 5- to 10-year age range. Special emphasis is placed on understanding the physiological and psychological differences of coaching children.

The course is designed to emphasize that the game itself essentially is the teacher and the focus of the coach at this level clearly is as facilitator. The curriculum focuses on the organization of a practice session, using small-sided games to enhance knowledge and fun, basic understanding of the Laws of the Game and information about the care and prevention of injuries. There is no testing in the State course.


REGIONAL DIPLOMA
The Regional Diploma is a 13-hour course designed for the coach working a player in the 11- to 18-year age range. An emphasis is placed on learning to work with the developing player within both an individual and team concept.

The curriculum outlines how technical and tactical concepts can be applied in the development of players. The focus is placed on the basic methods of coaching, teaching proper technique, the theory and application of offensive and defensive tactics and understanding team management. There is no testing in the Regional course.

ADVANCED REGIONAL DIPLOMA
The Advanced Regional Diploma is a 21-hour course designed as a supplement to the Regional Diploma, adding eight hours devoted to the study of systems of play and a practice teaching component. Participants are given an opportunity to conduct a training session on an assigned topic and are assessed by the course instructor.

An eight-hour option is available for groups who have taken the Regional Diploma and are interested in the additional hours provided in this course. The course is an excellent preparatory course for the National Diploma Course.


Youth Level I Diploma
Formerly known as the Parent Coach Diploma, the Youth Level I Diploma is a 2 ½-hour course for coaches of players 5-8 years of age. The course deals with coaching young players who are playing the game for the first time. The course content includes philosophy of coaching youth, risk management strategies, organization of practice sessions and activities appropriate to players of this age. There is no testing in the Youth Level I Diploma. All candidates must be at least 14 years of age at the time of application. Candidates under 18 years of age must be accompanied by an adult for the duration of the course. 

Youth Level II Diploma
Formerly known as the State Diploma, the Youth Level II Diploma is a five-hour course directed toward the person newly involved in coaching soccer. It is designed to help coaches working with players in the 5- to 10-year age range. Special emphasis is placed on understanding the physiological and psychological differences of coaching children. The course is designed to emphasize that the game itself essentially is the teacher and the focus of the coach at this level clearly is as facilitator. The curriculum focuses on the organization of a practice session, using small-sided games to enhance knowledge and fun, basic understanding of the Laws of the Game and information about the care and prevention of injuries. There is no testing in the Youth Level II Diploma. All candidates must be at least 14 years of age at the time of application. Candidates under 18 years of age must be accompanied by an adult for the duration of the course

Youth Level III Diploma
Formerly known as the Youth Diploma, the Youth Level III Diploma is designed for the youth coach working with players in age groups U-6 through U-8. The overall objective of the course is to help coaches create the optimal learning environment for players at this developmental stage. Emphasis is placed on the basic methods of coaching youth and understanding the physiological and psychological differences between coaching young children and coaching adolescents or adults. The course teaches coaches how to utilize the game of soccer itself as the teacher and encourages the coach to fulfill the role of facilitator of players' growth and development. The curriculum also focuses on the organization of a practice session, teaching proper technique through activities and games appropriate for U-6 and U-8 players, working with parents, helping players develop ball mastery, dribbling and striking the ball skills, and using small-sided games as teaching exercises and vehicles for player development. The Youth Level III Diploma is a 13-hour course held over two days, featuring both classroom presentations (theory) and on-field instruction (praxis). The course utilizes demonstrators in the targeted age groups for most field sessions. There is no testing involved in this course, through coaches are afforded an opportunity to be assessed on a practical demonstration and receive feedback from a staff coach. Each person completing the course is awarded the Youth Level III Diploma. All candidates must be at least 14 years of age at the time of application. Candidates under 18 years of age, must be accompanied by an adult for the duration of the course. No prerequisite for this course is required, though candidates will find previous coursework, such as the NSCAA Youth Level I and Youth Level II Diplomas and/or the USSF ""F"" and ""E"" licenses, to be helpful in processing the contents of this course

Youth Level IV Diploma
Formerly known as the Advanced Youth Diploma, thee Youth Level IV Diploma is designed for the youth coach working with players in age groups U-9 through U-12. The overall objective of the course is to help coaches create the optimal learning environment for players at this developmental stage. Emphasis is placed on the basic methods of coaching youth and understanding the physiological and psychological differences between coaching children and coaching adolescents or adults. The curriculum focuses on numerous important aspects of coaching the targeted age groups: assisting participants in the development of a coaching philosophy; introducing the progressive teaching method and the coaching in the game teaching method; reviewing the organization of a practice session; teaching essential components of the techniques of dribbling, passing, receiving, tackling, goalkeeping, heading, and shooting/finishing; reviewing important safety issues; providing instruction in the principles of attack and defense and addressing the application of those principles in on-field tactical coaching; and providing structured discussion time to address contemporary coaching issues such as that of developing a soccer culture.

Junior Level V Diploma
Formerly known as the Regional Diploma, the Junior Level V Diploma is a 13-hour course designed for the coach working players 11 to 18 years of age. An emphasis is placed on learning to work with the developing player within both an individual and team concept. The curriculum outlines how technical and tactical concepts can be applied in the development of players. The focus is placed on the basic methods of coaching, teaching proper technique, the theory and application of offensive and defensive tactics and understanding team management. There is no testing in the Junior Level V Diploma. All candidates must be at least 16 years of age at the time of application. Candidates under 18 years of age must be accompanied by an adult for the duration of the course.

Junior Level VI Diploma
Formerly known as the Advanced Regional Diploma, the Junior Level VI Diploma is a 21-hour course that shares a portion of its curriculum with the Junior Level V Diploma. The Junior Level VI Diploma adds an eight-hour segment to the 13-hour Junior Level V Diploma curriculum, devoted to technical and tactical uses of small-sided games, the study of systems of play and a practice teaching component. Participants are given an opportunity to conduct a training session on an assigned topic and are assessed by the course instructor. All candidates must be at least 16 years of age at the time of application. If a candidate is under 18 years of age, an adult must accompany him or her for the duration of the course

Goalkeeping Level I Diploma
The overall objective of the Goalkeeping Level I Diploma is to explore some of the myths and mystiques surrounding the goalkeeping function. The six-hour course is directed towards the team coach - not the specialist goalkeeper coach. The object is to empower the coach with knowledge and practice methods that will enable the coach to evaluate a goalkeeper in game situations and then design an appropriate practice program for goalkeepers in and outside of team practices. The course includes lecture (theory) and field (practical) sessions.

Goalkeeping Level II Diploma
The overall objective of the Goalkeeping Level II Diploma is to create an optimal learning environment for this specialized position. The 12-hour course is geared towards the specialist goalkeeping coach and the team coach looking for in-depth information surrounding the coaching of goalkeepers. The course includes both lecture (theory) and field (practical) sessions. An NSCAA Goalkeeping Level I Diploma is a prerequisite for this course.

Goalkeeping Level III Diploma
The overall objective of the National Goalkeeping Diploma is to explore the tactical components of goalkeeping and the specifics of training and developing goalkeepers. The emphasis of this eighteen-hour course is on the tactical role of the goalkeeper within the team framework. All candidates wishing to take the Goalkeeping Level III Diploma must hold the Goalkeeping Level I and II Diplomas or equivalent (NSCAA/USSF Level I and Level II Diplomas.

National Diploma
The National Diploma is a 50-hour course designed to meet the needs of the more experienced coach, particularly those coaching at the high school level and above, or
youth coaches with previous certification and a number of years working with the developing player. It is strongly recommended that candidates complete the NSCAA Junior Level VI Diploma or USSF "D" license prior to the course. Some USYS affiliates will only recognize the NSCAA National Diploma if they have completed the state association's USSF "C" license. Please check with your state association for details. The overall objective of the National Diploma is to acquaint the coach with the needs of the American soccer player and provide an organized and progressive methodology of coaching those needs. Basic technical and tactical knowledge is the central theme of the course in a 6 v. 6 model. The course includes sessions on the teaching process, psychological skills training and Laws of the Game. Participants receive a curriculum that outlines the course content and includes valuable resource material. Testing includes oral, written and practical (coaching) evaluations. Applicants must be at least 18 years of age. NSCAA recommends that candidates for the National Diploma spend three hours taking the on-line safety course. For a cost of just $36, you will have access to outstanding information to help you prepare for the immediate treatment of your player’s injuries. We strongly encourage you to take advantage of this opportunity. For more information or to register, click on the NCSS logo on the right side of the NSCAA page. 

It is strongly recommended the applicant has either obtained the Junior Level VI Diploma or USSF National "D" 

Advanced National Diploma
The Advanced National Diploma is a 50-hour course designed for the experienced coach working with the advanced player. The emphasis is on training those players within a team concept designed to produce a successful environment. The 8 v. 8 model is the main focus. Candidates receive a curriculum which outlines the course and includes valuable resource material. The curriculum includes team organization and training, advanced methodology, analysis and understanding systems of play, a focus on tactics within thirds of the field, technical position overviews, match analysis and the psychological aspect of coaching. Testing includes oral, written and practical (coaching) evaluations. Acceptance into the course requires an NSCAA National Diploma, the USSF ""B"", Canadian National ""B"", or an English UEFA ""B"" license. A minimum of 10 years of coaching experience at an appropriate level also is suggested. 

Prerequisites: NSCAA National Diploma (Taken one year prior or candidate received a Distinguished Pass) or USSF ""B"" License or English UEFA ""B"" Recommended: Minimum of 10 years coaching experience

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