ALL exam candidates MUST have an FRN and MUST include an email on their application.

The FCC has recently instituted a $35 application fee, this will be explained below

I am a VE (Volunteer Examiner) and Field Examiner registered with the ARRL/VEC (American Radio Relay League/Volunteer Examiner Coordinator).

VECs post scheduled exam sessions on their websites so you can find sessions local to you on the ARRL/VEC and W5YI websites.

Exam Schedule

ARRL-VEC License exams $15
EC-001 Intro to EmComm Exams $0

I am not currently participating with a specific VE group.

Test Dates & Location Updated 10 August 2023

For FCC License Exams

  • ALL candidates MUST have an FRN, and a postal address, and a valid email address
  • ALL candidates MUST present photo ID (and a copy of their amateur radio license if applying for an upgrade)
  • These requirements are set by the FCC

Electronic Application Submission
With electronic submission you will see your new license or upgrade in the FCC database within a couple business days, often the day after the exam session, rather than a week to 10 days. Check to see if the VE group submits their session results

FRN (FCC Registration Number)
You need to do this BEFORE the exam session. Registration for an FRN is free and you will be issued the FRN on the spot. You will need the FRN to communicate with the FCC once you have taken and passed your exam.

The FCC has a video on how to register on the CORES system and get your FRN.

Postal and Email Address Required
The FCC now requires a valid email address on all applications. If you don’t keep your email address updated along with your postal mailing address, you may have your license suspended or revoked if mail/email is returned undeliverable. Updating your contact information is free and can be done online in minutes.

Exam & Application Fees
The VECs (Volunteer Examiner Coordinators) charge a test session fee to cover the cost of exam materials and administrative expenses of $15. The local examiner group does not retain any of this fee. This fee has nothing to do with the FCC.

In 2023 the FCC began charging a $35 application fee. This fee will NOT be applied to administrative changes i.e. updating postal address or updating email address.

The Process

  • When you arrive at the exam session…
  • You will be asked to fill in your your name, contact information, and FRN on the license application form 605 and on the exam answer sheet.
  • Once completed, you will present the forms, your ID, and $15 exam fee to the session coordinator.
  • You will be given back the answer sheet and an exam booklet. Please do not write in the exam booklet.
  • When you are done with the exam, return the answer sheet and exam booklet to the coordinator.
  • After the exam has been graded
    • Pass – you will be given an opportunity to take the next license class exam at no additional charge, or you may collect your CSCE (proof of passing the exam) and leave the session
    • Fail – you may retake the test during the session. You will need to pay the $15 exam fee for each attempt until passing.
  • You will NOT pay the FCC application fee at the exam session.
  • Once your passing exam and license application have been acknowledged by the FCC, (this should be 1-3 days after the application is submitted by the VEC) the FCC will post a link on the ULS. You will need to log in to the ULS to find and use the link.
    • You will need to log in to pay the fee online.
    • You will have 30 days to pay the fee or the application will be rejected.
    • If your application is rejected, contact the exam coordinator for the session you attended for help in filing a new application.

This is a new process, there are bound to be a few glitches here and there. In most cases small glitches can be fixed without to much headache. Take your time in completing the forms completely and keep your CSCE at least until you have your callsign.

Feel free to ask questions at any time in the process, during the exam session or after. I am always happy to answer question and help resolve problems with license applications.

Note: An Amateur Radio license is required to transmit on amateur frequencies. No license is required to listen! I highly recommend getting an inexpensive radio and start listening in on your local repeaters so you can hit the ground running when your new callsign is posted.

For EC-001 Exams

To take the EC-001 Final Assessment you need to have completed the EC-001 Introduction to Emergency Communications course and have an instructor recommendation to take the exam. You also need to provide proof of having taken the ICS-100 and IS-700 FEMA online classes. Talk to your instructor about their process for taking the exam.

Last Updated 10 August 2023

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