OVERVIEW
The high quality of track and field, cross country, and road events in the New England association at all levels (youth, scholastic, collegiate, and open) can be attributed to the officials who work the many meets to ensure fair and safe competition.
 
Joining the ranks of officials is not a difficult process. One becomes a certified official through their home association (New England for MA, NH, RI, VT). USA Track & Field certification runs for the Olympiad - between Olympic Games. The current 4 year certification period began in January 2017 and runs through 2020, but officials may join at any time.  There is a fee covering the Olympiad which includes the testing. All certified officials are required to have current USATF members.
 
Prospective officials take a written, open-book rules review which is in several parts. There is a general track and field module as well as tests covering various event groups and specialty areas of officiating. New officials may complete the rules review and become certified at any time; the certification runs from date of approval to the end of the Olympiad.

Certification Levels
"Apprentice" or "Association" are the first levels of certification, depending on prior officiating experience.

After several years of practical experience at different types of meets and an additional test, an official may apply to move up to National level ranking, and, ultimately, Master level ranking.
Every four years, at the start of the new Olympiad, officials must be be recertified. Officials who renew either complete the rules review or attend a recertification review for their certification level at the beginning of each Olympiad.

The certification review exams for 2017-2020 are available and are posted on the USATFOfficials web site. Most renewing officials will only need to complete the review for their current level of certification - but some specialty areas do require retesting.  NOTE: If an official did not renew during a full Olympiad (currently, last certification being prior to 2012), then the process must be re-started from step 1. That is, no automatic renewals if there are 4 year gaps in service.