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Owatonna Steele County Amateur Radio 10-Jan-2011

Amateur Radio License and Exam Information

A FCC issued operating license is required for the Amateur Radio Service. Exams are administered by a network of Volunteer Examiners (VE) and are routinely scheduled by many VE groups. Known exam sessions in the area are listed on the OSCAR Calendar page. Exam sessions can also be researched at ARRL and W5YI.

The FCC currently issues three different license class designatons: Technician, General, and Extra. The Technician Class license is the entry level license. Morse code is not a requirement for the Technician Class license. From a question pool of about 500 items, the exam is 35 multiple choice questions. The questions check basic knowledge on FCC regulations, radio, electronics, and operating practices. Passing the exam requires answering 26 questions correctly.

An amateur can advance to the General Class or Extra Class by demonstrating additional knowledge through an examination. The higher level license classes enjoy additional operating privileges as a reward.

If you are planning to take an exam, be sure to contact the VE group before the exam date. The VE will be able to help assure that you bring the required documentation for the exam session, such as identifcation. This also provides an opportunity for you to inform the VE if you have a disability and may need additional assistance.

The FCC does not charge a fee for issuing or renewing most Amateur Radio Operator Licenses. There is a fee, however, for taking the exam. For 2011, the exam fee is $15.00.

Several internet sites offer the ability to take sample exams. Having the ability to take practice exams sets the stage for success. Even though you may not know what the questions are going to be, you can experience what the exam questions will be like. Check the OSCAR Links page for suggested sources of practice exams.

If you want some help studying for the exam, check out the information on the License Class page.

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