Become a ham


AARC sometimes gives classes, depending on demand. These may be classroom instruction or an assisted self study.

Classes of License

Morse code is no longer a requirement for any license class.

There are only three current classes of new amateur radio licenses: Technician, General, and Extra. The Novice and Advanced Class licenses are no longer issued.

  • The Technician Class is the entry level license class and permits VHF/UHF operation plus limited HF operation on the 10 meter band. It requires passing Exam Element 2.
  • The General Class License provides additional HF operating privileges. It requires passing Exam Elements 2 and 3.
  • The Extra Class License is the highest class license and permits all amateur operating privileges. It requires passing Exam Elements 2,3, and 4.

Once you have passed an exam element and are issued the corresponding license, you do not have to take it again to upgrade to the next class of license unless you let your license expire. Note that it is possible to go directly to General or Extra by taking multiple exam elements in one session.

Renewal of an Amateur Radio License is free but must be done in the last three months of your license term.

Study Materials

For all three License Classes (Technician, General, and Extra), there are numerous printed study guides, YouTube videos, and other online resources, including listings of all questions which may be included in the exams, and sample exams which you can take as often as you like to boost your confidence for passing the actual exam.

Some representative resources include:

American Radio Relay League (ARRL) Ham Radio License Manual and other related publications. AARC highly recommends using ARRL license preparation materials.  Ham Radio License Manual, 5th Edition (electronic version also available at:

Gordon West publications.

FCC Rules Part 97

US Amateur Radio Bands – ARRL Frequency Chart

There are numerous online study guides and practice tests such as:


Ham Test Online –
EHam –
Hamstudy – – this site sponsored by Icom gives the text questions in flash card format.

There are also many videos available including:

Hermosa Beach Ham Radio Class –
Appears to have more coverage of the material. Video of actual classroom instruction.

Ham Whisperer YouTube Technical License Course –
Note it appears he may teach the test rather than the material.

David Casler’s KE0OG Videos –

John D’s Videos –