New "D" License Format Explained

Candidate Packet

The National "D" license is a 36 to 40-hour course designed for the experienced coach who has already earned a National "E" license. The focus of this course is to improve a coaches ability to positively influence individual players and teams.

The National “D” course is only administered and instructed by State Soccer Associations. Please contact your State Association for more information on these courses and course schedules.

What are the key components of the "D" license course?

  • Develop the core coaching competencies necessary to effectively teach the 13-14 year old athlete and team. 
  • Understand the characteristics and needs of an athlete in the Intermediate Stage of U.S. Soccer's Athlete Development Model.
  • Build on the foundation of knowledge and experience in order to proceed through the sequence of coaching development courses.  

What are the specific target outcomes of the course?

  • Teach the Principles of Play in a training environment. (7v7 to 9v9).
  • Apply the Principles of Play to functional group roles in a full team system.
  • Plan a sequence of training and weekly cycles to complete a season plan.

The “D” license course is broken into four phases:

  I.  Preparation Phase

  • Candidates are required to complete five (5) assigned training sessions (see session topics below).

  II.  Instructional Phase (14 to 18 hrs.)

  • Candidates meet face-to-face with instructors at a course.


  III.  Deliberate Practice Phase

  • Candidates are required to complete five (5) assigned training sessions over a minimum of 10 weeks. It is expected that the sessions be evenly distributed through the 10 week period.
  • Candidates will be assigned the training sessions during the Instructional phase.


  IV.  Performance Review Phase (14 to 18 hrs.)

  • Final on-field exam.
  • Candidates have one full year following the completion of the deliberate practice phase to attend any performance review phase to complete the “D” course.

Course Assignment

  • Candidates are required to view an online presentation and complete a series of questions on Concussion Awareness. The assignment must be completed prior to the candidate receiving their final course results.
  • Visit this link to complete the online assignment.
  • Candidates are not required to print a certificate of completion.
  • A report will be automatically sent to U.S. Soccer and the State Association host upon completion.

“D” License Candidate Guidebooks

  • Download - “D” License Candidate Guidebook - English
  • Download - “D” License Candidate Guidebook - Spanish
  • Download - “D” License Goalkeeping Guidebook - English
  • Download - “D” License Goalkeeping Guidebook - Spanish

*The unauthorized reproduction or distribution of this copyrighted work is illegal.

U.S. Soccer Curriculum

  • Learn more about the U.S. Soccer Curriculum - More Info

Candidate Resources


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  • $100.00 ($175 non-members) for each of the two weekends for IYSA member coaches