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How to become a judge

British Dressage operates a comprehensive training and assessment scheme which enables judges to progress up the levels, or ‘lists’ from preliminary to the heady heights of judging grand prix tests at championships.

Many trainers and riders use the knowledge they have built up to progress into a judging career. It has been said that becoming a judge helps with test riding and coaching skills as well as the general understanding of the way of going of the horse. British Dressage currently has just over 1,300 judges, this includes approximately 600 trainees.

Please note that the testing system policy has been updated (April 2017). To find out more about the new testing system and the view the updated policy please click here 

For more information or to talk to someone about your specific requirements please contact the Training and Education Department (tel: 02476 698833)  

How to become a Trainee Judge

There is no criteria to meet in order to become a Trainee Judge but you must be a Full or Non-Competing member. If you would like to be visible on the 'Find a Judge' page on this website you will need to have attended an Induction day before January 2018. Induction days are organised in each region and will cost £15 to attend. There after we ask that you attend a seminar for your level every year. There is a registration fee of £10, your registration will then be valid for two years.  If you have not become a listed judge by the end of the two years, you will need to make a new application and attend another Induction day. To apply to become a Trainee Judge online using bookwhen please click here  

To book onto Judge Testing

Part 1 and 2

The next part 1 and 2 dates will be in January 2018, booking will open in July. 

For a full list of current judge testing dates and to book your place, please click here . Please note that applications for June part 1 and 2 testing will close on 28 April 2017, no applications will be taken after this date.

Part 3

Booking for part 3 exams in September will open on 19 April 2017 and close on 1 July 2017. If your desired venue and level is fully booked, please continue with the application on the overflow option. We will ensure everyone who is eligible for testing at part 3 is allocated a space, however please be aware that if you are on the waiting list you may be invited to a testing day at another venue. Please note currently not all venues are hosting all levels. To book your place, please click here. 

If you are unable to use the online booking system, please contact the Training and Education Department.  

Evaluations and assessments

In order to find a Judge who is authorised to do an oral evaluation / assessment, shadow Judge or who is willing to review a set of practice judging sheets please click here.  Please note fees are applicable for these services.  These fees are detailed in the new judge testing accreditation document and are also listed at the bottom of the Tutor Judge list.

Learn from the world's top judges
The International Equestrian Federation's publication FEI DRESSAGE HANDBOOK Guidelines for Judging, has been written by some of the most experienced FEI dressage judges. It will help with understanding scores and the criteria outlined in the FEI Dressage Rulebook. It is available 
here from the British Dressage shop.