As you will probably already be aware, the new World Handicap System (WHS) is being introduced across Scotland on 2nd November 2020. What you will probably not be aware of is all the work that has been going on behind the scenes to prepare for this. It's not just the R&A, USGA, and Scottish Golf who have been working on this, it's your own golf club committee members too.

What most golfers will notice is:

  • handicaps will be based on your 8 best scores from your last 20,

  • standard scratch score will disappear, replaced by course rating and slope rating,

  • the number of strokes you receive may be different for each course or each set of tees.

That very much simplifies the changes but it's the essence of what will be different. Courtesy of Scottish Golf, we can offer members various documents and images to download from here which will help you to become more familiar with the changes:

What will the WHS mean for you?

Player's Guide (Some paper copies will be available from the club but numbers are limited.)

Please click on the Word document icon below each picture to get a downloadable version.

There will inevitably be questions. Please be patient with us if we cannot give you an answer straight away. There's a lot of new stuff for us to understand well enough to explain it. 

One odd scenario is worth pre-empting, because it WILL happen to some players eventually, and it may be hard for them to understand.


Q. I posted a score below handicap but my handicap went UP! How can that be right?

A. Your handicap is based on the average of your best 8 scores from your last 20. If you put in a score under handicap but this dislodges a better score that was the oldest (20th) one previously used in your handicap calculation, your average will rise, and that could result in a handicap increase.