Studying for your Technician License is very easy and inexpensive, even free depending on how you choose to study! The Technician License exam is a 35 question test drawn from a pool of 412 questions. The question pool is divided into 10 subelements which are then divided into topic groups. The test will consist of one random question from each of the 35 topic groups. While there are several methods to study, they are all similar in that you will study the exact questions the way they will appear on your test. The order of the multiple choice answers for these questions will be random but the question will be presented exactly the same.
The process to obtain your Technician License begins now!
Step 1 – Exam Study & Practice Tests
There are several methods to study for your test. We’ll explore each one below:
Smartphone/Tablet – Apps are available for both iPhone/iPad and Android to help you study directly on your device. These apps also allow you to take Practice Tests which is the best way to prepare for the real test once you’ve read through the questions at least once.
- (Apple) Ham Radio Exam Tech – https://apple.co/2GlnfPh
- (Android) Hamstudy – https://bit.ly/44VswHv
- (Android) Ham Radio Exam Tech – https://bit.ly/3Rt4hx9
HamStudy.org Website – HamStudy.org is a great website that allows you to learn and also take practice tests. If you create a free account it will also keep track of questions you’ve struggled with and bring them up more often to help you learn. The site will also track your progress through Practice Tests and give you a good idea on when you are ready to take the real test. https://hamstudy.org/
Study Guides – Use a printed or electronic study guide. This is often a preferred method because it gives you a book that not only shows you the correct answers but explains why the answer is correct. In addition to using this method you will still want to use one of the other methods to take practice tests. KB6NU provides a “No Nonsense” Technician study guide PDF file for free https://www.kb6nu.com/study-guides/. A great resource is Gordon West’s Technician Class Study Guide (Amazon: https://a.co/d/bzlUgbD). The ARRL Ham Radio License Manual is what our quarterly study classes are based on (Amazon https://a.co/d/c8mr3Lr). Contact our VE Team Lead below for discounted pricing on ARRL License Manuals.
Study the Question Pool – You can read the full question pool with answers, however this method provides no explanation on why an answer is correct or not. This is a great in conjunction with HamStudy.org above. Note the study guides mentioned above include the question pool. Technician exam question pool and figures at NCVEC: http://www.ncvec.org/page.php?id=373
Step 2 – Get Ready to Test
Once you have taken several practice tests and are passing each time, you’re ready for the real test! You will need to bring a photo ID when you take your test along with your FCC Registration Number (FRN). Your FRN is a 10-digit number assigned to all businesses or individuals that are registered with the FCC. You’ll use this number in place of your SSN for any transactions with the FCC. To register for your FRN, simply follow the instructions here: http://bit.ly/FCCFRN
Step 3 – Test Time
Now that you’ve studied and have your FRN, it’s time to schedule your test! We hold monthly exam sessions. We are required to charge $15 for adults and $5 for children. The details are here: https://hamstudy.org/sessions/K4SCO. Please contact our VE Team Lead below if you need any accommodation for a disability. We will work with you!
VE Team Lead
Mike Kelly, KY4LV
Step 4 – Pay the FCC
Starting in April of 2022, new amateur radio licenses cost $35. Once the FCC processes your exam results, they will send you an email asking for $35 and showing you how to pay. Please see this website for more information: https://www.arrl.org/fcc-application-fee.
Step 5 – Get On the Air!
Once your callsign shows up in the FCC Database, you are officially a ham and ready to get on the air. The FCC will send you a PDF copy of your license. Save that file and print it out. After the exam session, you’ll receive an email from our VE Team Lead with some helpful tips to get started. If you need assistance with picking your first radio just ask a Ham at one of our meetings or if you already have equipment you can now start using any of our local repeaters and check in to any of the Nets.
The FCC License Database can be found here: https://wireless2.fcc.gov/UlsApp/UlsSearch/searchLicense.jsp