So, You Want to Become an AMATEUR RADIO OPERATOR?

Click “Continue Reading” for a helpful guide from our friends at the Anderson Repeater Club on how to easily become a licensed ham radio operator!! 

Becoming a licensed ham radio operator is not difficult.  The entry-level license, called the Technician Class, is designed in such a way that everyone, young or old, can understand topics that are included in the required test.


To better understand amateur radio licensing go to:   

At this site you can learn about the various licenses, take “practice exams” (very useful, almost everyone does it), and find an exam session (our Club offers a Volunteer Examiner session each month).

  • It’s useful to get a “book” to help understand the topics that you will be tested on.  We recommend:

Technician Class FCC License Preparation for Element 2 Technician Class Theory

By Gordon West WB6NOA

ISBN:  978-0-945053-90-3

This book is available on-line for about $20-$25.  It has all of the questions in the official “question pool” (423 questions).  Don’t panic…..The test is only 35 of those questions.

  • Another good resource is the American Radio Relay League:

(Provides training books and practice for each license class)

ARRL Ham Radio License Manual 4th Edition  (It is organized differently, and is used by many.)

  • If you prefer more of a class environment:

Technician Ham Class September 2018 Chapter 1 Welcome to Amateur Radio W4EEY

A Youtube class taught by hams.  (Based on ARRL Ham Radio License Manual 4th Edition)


  • An Amateur Radio License that is issued by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is required to get on the air. 

You must pass the written test at a Volunteer Examiner Test Session.  You must present a picture ID and pay a fee of $15. You will be given a 35 question test that has 4 possible answers for each question.  The test questions are selected from the pool of questions used in the practice exams and in the text book. Most candidates complete the test in 10 to 20 minutes.

Additional Online resources for becoming a Ham Radio Operator:

Dave Casler has a series of videos to support the ARRL training books

Gordon West Training Resources

The Ham Whisperer’s Technician Class License Course

Ham Universe

This site has a lot of information related to the hobby in addition to getting licensed

No-Nonsense Ham Study Guide

A paragraph format license study technique (free pdf, Kindle, Nook or Audio version)

Bullet Amateur Radio Society,

Study material to earn your Technician Class Ham License


On-line test preparation sites:

Ham Test Online

Ham Exam


Ham Universe


Amateur Radio is a hobby that can be enjoyed by all.  Like any other hobby you can spend a lot of money or very little.  You can spend a lot of time or very little. In fact, one benefit of the hobby is that you can “drop out” for a period of time, and assuming you don’t let your license expire (it lasts for 10 years and you just have to renew it at no cost) you can come back later and get involved again.


Our hobby provides many opportunities for social enjoyment, public service, emergency preparation, technical challenges, learning and much more.  There are two active amateur radio clubs in Madison County that meet regularly for friendship, fellowship and learning. We are always anxious to have new hams  join us.


Take the plunge into Amateur Radio as a hobby.  You will find it well worth your effort.


73,  (that means best regards in ham radio talk)


Anderson Repeater Club

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