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Ham Radio Exams: Study On-line!


Sorry - practice exams require Java. Simon Twigger, AA9PW,  wrote this fine Java applet to help those wishing to study for and practice taking written ham radio exams in the U.S.. Up-to-date practice exams for all three license classes are presented and include scoring and instant feedback. Be sure to visit Simon's site and let him know that you appreciate this utility. His web address is: http://www.aa9pw.com/

Ham radio exams in the U.S. are "multiple choice" and are administered by volunteer examiners who send the results in for processing. Once you have prepared to take an exam, you should find a local exam session. The ARRL offers an easy way to locate exam sessions: http://www.arrl.org/arrlvec/examsearch.phtml

The most popular license for entry level hams is the Technician Class license. This exam is only 35 questions. Morse Code is no longer a requirement for this license class. With this license, you will have access to all ham radio frequencies above 30 MHz - opening the door to packet radio, satellite operation, FM voice, and repeater operation to name a few.

Once you have mastered the Technician Class, you may be interested in the privileges offered  to General Class ham radio operators. The hams are able to use all ham radio "bands" and modes, including the HF frequencies. The high frequency (HF) bands are especially attractive to those who would like to talk around the world. A General Class license exam includes more advanced questions and the ability to copy Morse Code at 5 words per minute (wpm).

The highest license class is the Extra Class. This license requires another written exam with more advanced questions than the General class. With the Extra Class ham radio license, operators gain a bit more spectrum than General Class hams. However, Extra Class licensees do not gain any additional ham radio bands, transmitting power capabilities or modes than a General Class ham.

I encourage you to explore the possibility of getting a ham radio license. It is not a difficult thing to accomplish (I was first licensed at the age of 12) and the hobby really does offer a lot of possibilities.

You'll also want to check out my links on ham radio licensing. NěHR.com: Ham Radio Links: Antennas, electronics, lightning and grounding protection, software, DXing, towers and more.