Q. Does a participant have to have passed the MCC Laws Course before they can attend an ECB ACO Umpire course?
A. MCC is not producing a course so much as a series of modules on each Law that a participant can dip in and out of as (s)he wishes. There will also be two tests at different levels where participants can test their knowledge using multiple choice questions. At the end of the test participants will be supplied with a mark and details of any areas of knowledge they may want to develop. There will be no ‘pass’ or ‘fail’. Participants in ECB ACO courses who have used the MCC resource will have a distinct advantage, as will those who refer to the resource between course sessions, between the various educational stages and throughout their umpiring careers.
Q. I have completed Level 1A – what is the next appropriate level of my education?
A. Stages One and Two equate to the old Levels 1 and 1A so the next step for an existing Level 1A umpire would be to attend Stage Three.
Q. How much time should pass between attending Stage One and Stage Two?
A. Stage Two complements Stage One and builds on the knowledge and skills gained there. Participants who are keen to progress may choose to attend the Stage Two immediately after attending Stage One. Others may decide to wait a year or two, gaining on-field experience along the way. There is no set time and participants can choose to progress at their own speed.
Q. Can I pay the course fees by cheque?
A. Regrettably, no! All payments must be made on line by debit or credit card.
Q. Do I have to be an ECB ACO member to attend a Stage Two course?
A. No! However, you will need to be a member if you wish to be accredited at U1A following your Stage Two course.
Q. If I don’t want to be an ECB ACO member, will I get a reduced cost for my course?
A. Membership is included within the course fee for Stage One. If membership is not taken up there is NO reduction in the course fee.
Q. Is there an expiry date on the discount code given for Stage Two when I book Stage One?
A. The discount code given at Stage One can only be used when booking Stage Two in the same year. If someone only does Stage Two and not Stage One first then they will pay the full £30 for Stage Two.
Q. What is meant by the term “experienced umpire” in the description of the Stage Three course.
A. Under the ECB ACO policy of “Education for All”, strictly speaking, anybody who has attended Stage Two may enrol for Stage Three. However, to gain maximum benefit from attending Stage Three, it would be preferable for participants to have a deal of practical umpiring experience. The precise amount of experience will vary from person to person and will be affected by such considerations as the amount and standard of cricket they have played, or the positive feedback they have received consistently from trained Observers. As a rule of thumb, perhaps fifty league and cup matches would be suitable.