ARRL VE Testing
VE Testing is held monthly on the 2nd Saturday of each month.
Ham Test Instructions
The following steps will guide you in finding a locally-based test session, as well as assisting you in gathering and documenting all the required information you will need for exam day. You may also download a printed version of this document by clicking the button below.
Step 1: Study
The entire question pool is published and available for you to download here http://www.arrl.org/question-pools. There are many online practice exam sites and phone apps, most of which use the actual question pool.
Step 2: Find a Test Session
There are Volunteer Examiner (VE) teams holding tests all across the country and you can find them at http://www.arrl.org/find-an-amateur-radio-license-exam-session but I’ll make this easy for you. CMSARA holds a test session the 2nd Saturday of every month in the Gym at Crossroads of Life Church, 6775 Siwell Rd, Byram MS 39272 at 1PM. The gymnasium houses an indoor basketball court so there’s always plenty of room, but we do ask you let us know your coming so we can set up a table for you. The VE Liaison can be contacted at 601./.741./.0873 (text preferred) or email qso.w5ssj(at)gmail(dot)com (pardon the oddball formats, but the spambots drive me crazy.)
Step 3: Exam Day
Our test sessions are overseen by the ARRL Volunteer Examiner Coordinator. They have a prep list at http://www.arrl.org/what-to-bring-to-an-exam-session for you to check but, but I’ll give you the short version:
BEFORE your exam:
The FCC no longer allows us to put your SSN on the necessary paperwork. You will have to register for a FCC Registration Number (or FRN) before we can complete the paperwork for your test. It’s free and should [sic] take about 5 minutes. The site to register can be found here https://apps.fcc.gov/cores/userLogin.do
What to bring ON TEST DAY:
1. Your FRN.
2, A photo ID. Typically a drivers licens, but any govt issued photo ID is fine. If you don’t have one the ARRL webpage has a list of alternatives.
3, $15 test fee. For those under 18 is the test fee is only $5.
4. If you wish to bring a calculator it must be non-programmable or you must sufficiently demonstrate to the VE team its memory has been erased. Cell phones are not permitted. We do have a limited number of calculators, first come first serve, and so cannot guarantee one will be available. They are typically not necessary on the Technician or General tests.
5. We have all the paperwork to fill out, but if you’d prefer the VEC would welcome you to electronically fill the forms you’ll need. You will have to print it out to bring with you, but will save time on test day. Click the button below to download the NCVEC Quick-Form 605 Application document.
Step 4: Wait. Pay the FCC fee. Wait some more.
You’ll know before leaving the building if you passed your exam, and if you’re upgrading an existing license you can use your new privileges immediately, just remember to add /AG or /AE to your callsign until it shows up in the ULS database. If you’ve earned a new license, we will compile all the paperwork and submit it to the VEC immediately following the test session. The VEC usually processes everything Monday morning and sends it off to the FCC who will email you a $35 ransom / extortion fee, which if you’re under 18, the ARRL will reimburse. Once you’ve completed the transaction, you’ll get another email with your license info.