What is Certification?

Certification is a multi-part process that all students must go through in order to demonstrate they are ready to progress to the next level of the program.

PLEASE READ THIS BEFORE MOVING ON – The First Tee program is not a race! It is intentionally designed for students to have multiple exposures at each level. Many students will not be old enough to advance after just one season…THIS IS NORMAL!!! A lot of these students will still take part in certification activities. Practicing certification is a great opportunity to experience the process even though their results will not count towards their future progression.


Students must meet ALL the following criteria before advancing to the next level.

  • Minimum Age – Each student must meet the minimum age requirement (no exceptions). Students have until the end of the first week of a new season (Spring or Fall) to reach this age.
    • PLAYer – 7- Minimum age to start. Must be 9 years or older to move to Par.
    • Par – 9
    • Birdie – 11
    • Eagle – 13
    • ACE – 14
  • Written Assessment – Each student must pass a written test. The written test will review information discussed in class and in their Yardage Books. This includes: core values, healthy habits, life skills, golf etiquette and golf rules. Tests require a score of 80% or better to be considered passing. Should a child not reach a passing score on the first attempt, a second chance will be made available.
  • Yardage Books – Each student should complete as much material in their yardage book as their class covers. Questions should be answered thoroughly and thoughtfully. Yardage books will be checked and then given back for future review/reference.
  • Golf Skills Demonstration – Each student will be required to demonstrate minimum levels of proficiency in their golf abilities (putting, chipping and full swing).
  • Coach Recommendation – Each student must receive a recommendation from their current level coach before advancing. If a student’s coach does not believe they are “ready” to advance, they will not be promoted to the next level. Chapter staff will communicate directly with coaches to determine which students are able to progress.
  • Advancement – Once a participant has met all of the above criteria they will be moved up to the next level. The participant will attend her/his new class at the beginning of the next season.

More information about certification will be given out toward the end of the season.