Date: June 17, 2015
Author: GV

Handicapping & Course Rating


Golf Australia is the governing body for handicapping and course rating in Australia and undertakes this role within Victoria in conjunction with Golf Victoria. The purpose of the Australian Handicap & Course Rating Systems is to make the game of golf more enjoyable for golfers by providing a means of measuring a golfer’s performance and progress and to enable golfers of differing abilities to compete on as equitable a basis as possible.

Through these systems, each golfer establishes an Australian Handicap which is a numerical measurement of a player's potential (not actual) scoring ability.

The relative difficulty of Victorian golf courses is determined by Golf Victoria in accordance with the Golf Australia Course Rating Systems. Specially trained Course Rating Teams evaluate the difficulty of a golf course based on such variables as length and a number of obstacle factors.

Only affiliated bodies (such as Golf Victoria and affiliated clubs; Districts and the Victorian Golf League) are permitted to use the Golf Australia Handicap & Course Rating Systems.

In these subsections, you will find a range of information on the Golf Australia systems; key updates regarding the implementation of the new Australian Handicap System and specific details regarding Golf Victoria’s involvement in these areas.


Course Ratings


Temporary Course Ratings for Clubs

When clubs are undertaking course works, particularly major re-developments of tee and/or green complexes, a temporary adjustment may be required to the course rating. 

If during maintainence works of the course, the course length of a specific tee colour plays longer or shorter than the allowable 100m, the club has the following two options:

Play a competition without handicapping players, or;

Apply for a Temporary Rating by completing the GV Temporary Rating Form.

Please Note: not every tee requires a Temporary Rating, only those that are required for a competition.

Nine hole Temporary Ratings will not be created.


Course Rating Enquiries

If a golf club feels there is an issue with their scratch and/or slope rating, they can complete the following document in order for Golf Victoria to better understand what the issue maybe:

Course Rating Assessment (exl)

Q & A Document (PDF) 

GA Competition Analysis  (web)

All Course Rating enquiries for Victorian Golf Clubs can be directed to the following Golf Victoria staff members: –



Australian Handicapping and Course Rating Systems  

USGA Course Rating System Guide

Golf Link

News & Communication