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Coach Education Program
As the governing body for soccer in Canada the Canadian Soccer Association is responsible for
training coaches from grassroots to national team level. With the increasing number of players
registering with clubs across the country this represents a considerable challenge. In order to
meet this challenge the Association has developed a Long Term Player Development (LTPD)
Model and tailored the Coach Education Program to this Model. As a result a two-streamed
education program has been developed in conjunction with the NCCP and our
provincial/territorial partners that we feel will meet the needs of both developing coaches and the
The Streams through which a coach may enter and/or advance are:
Community Coach Stream
The new Program will be completely revamped and made available to the membership in three
phases, the first of which has seen the Community Sport Stream come on line across the country
on 23 January 2012. Each of these Streams include a number of courses designed to prepare
coaches for working with players in a specific stage of development as outlined in the LTPD
Phase 1 - The Community Coach Stream
The Community Sport Stream has four courses based on Stages 1, 2, 3, and 7 of the Long Term
Player Development Model. The first three courses, Active Start, FUNdamentals and Learn to
Train, deal with soccer training and the importance of physical literacy for players up to 12
years of age. The fourth course in this Stream is called Soccer for Life and focuses attention on
working with players between the ages of 13 through to “masters soccer”; which includes a wide
array of participants who play for fun and fitness; those who enjoy recreational soccer as well as
those who prefer to play competitively but not at the high performance level.
As can be seen from the flow chart below, the Community Coach Stream is divided into three
courses in which a coach earns the designation Trained within the National Coaching
Certification Program (NCCP). A coach may enter the Stream by taking any one of the
courses which best fits their coaching situation at the time. That coach may choose to remain
Trained as a First Kicks Coach, or a Children’s Diploma coach, or a Youth Diploma 1 Coach
and may take any of the other training courses within the Stream at their leisure. The First Kicks
module forms part of the Children’s Diploma but has been designed to be offered as a standalone
course for those wishing to find out more about working with children age 3-5 years old, in the
Active Start Stage of Development. If, however, a coach wishes to gain certification in this
Stream he/she must first complete training in each of the three courses and enter the Youth
License Course, in which he/she will receive additional training and undergo a formal evaluation.
Successful completion of this evaluation will earn the coach the “Certified”
designation in the NCCP. Coaches wishing to gain training through the Community Sport Stream would do so in the
Active Start Course: Completion of a training course totaling 3 hours (Active Start Stage
of Development – players U-4/U-6). No pre-requisites required.
FUNdamentals Course: Completion of the training course totaling 7 hours, plus take
NCCP Make Ethical Decisions Module (Fundamentals Stage of Development – Boys U6/U-9 and
Girls U-6/U-8). No pre-requisites required.
Active Start/FUNdamentals Course: Completion of this combined course totaling 10
hours, plus take NCCP Make Ethical Decisions Module (Active Start Stage of
Development – players U-4/U-6 and Fundamentals Stage of Development – Boys U-6/U9
and Girls U-6/U-8).
No pre-requisites required.
Learn to Train Course: Completion of the training course totaling 14 hours plus take
NCCP Make Ethical Decisions Module (Learning to Train Stage of Development – Boys
U-9/U-12 and Girls U-8/U-11). No pre-requisites required.
Soccer for Life Course: Completion of a training course totaling 14 hours, plus take
NCCP Make Ethical Decisions Module (Soccer for Life Stage of Development – Boys U13
and Girls U-12 and older). No pre-requisites required.
Note: coaches do not undergo an official evaluation process in the Community Sport Stream,
therefore they are not designated on their NCCP transcript as a Certified Coach. These courses
provide training only in developmental stage specific areas of coaching. With this in mind
coaches taking part in these courses will receive the status of Trained Coach (or will be
considered In Training if they have still to complete a module of the particular course they have
Phase 1 - Licensing Stream (transition period through 2013)
As Phase 1 delivery of the new Coach Education Program does not include the Licensing
Stream, in the interim coaches can still take the existing Licensing courses until the Phase 2
launches in 2013. A coach wishing to enter the Licensing Stream must first pass a formal
evaluation after attending a B License Pre-Test Course held within his/her Province.
The Licensing Stream is aimed at those who are more serious about their coaching development,
and requires that coaches reach a minimum standard of competence in a practical coaching
environment. Each coach is, therefore, formally evaluated and graded by Staff Evaluators at each
stage of the process. This process begins with the B License Program, which involves a total of
60 hours of facilitated learning plus time allocated for formal assessments. It is aimed at coaches
working with players in an environment where performance is a critical factor in successful
coaching. The A License Program includes a total of 90 hours of facilitated learning, plus
formal assessments, and caters to those wishing to make a career of coaching at the highest level.
Coaches wishing to gain training and certification in the Licensing Stream would do so in the
B License Pre-Test Course: Completion of a 21-hour training course and an official
evaluation (Training to Train Stage of Development).
Pre-requisites: Community Coach or Soccer for Life Trained status, or exProfessional/National
Team Player (minimum 3 years experience)
B License-Provincial Course: Completion of the training course totaling 30 hours and an
official evaluation process (Training to Train Stage of Development).
Pre-requisites: Successful completion of B License Pre-Test Course
B License-National Course: Completion of the training course totaling 40 hours and an
official evaluation process (Training to Compete Stage of Development).
Pre-requisites: Successful completion of B License-Provincial Course or Canadian
A License Course: Completion of the training course totaling 90 hours and an official
evaluation process (Training to Compete Stage of Development).
Pre-requisites: Successful completion of the B License-National or Canadian
Each of the courses within the program is built with an emphasis placed on the practical
application of certain coaching skills, also known as “competencies”. These competencies are
expanded upon as the coach progresses through the program and will range from showing an
understanding of the rules of small-sided-soccer to running an effective practice with players in a
high performance environment.
More information on this Coach Education Program can be obtained by contacting us or your
Provincial/Territorial Soccer Association.