Become A Ham–A Shameless Plug

In addition to my amateur radio blogging, I also host an amateur radio podcast titled the practical amateur radio podcast (PARP).   I began podcasting about amateur radio in 2008.  PARP is currently in its 5th season and I’m looking forward to many more. 

When I was in the final stages of preparing for both my technician and general class exams, I used a set of flash cards from Flash and Pass.  I would ask my wife to read the questions to me and I would try to answer.  This was especially handy when I wasn’t near a computer and couldn’t take the online sample tests.  This process actually worked well for me and helped me polish my knowledge.

In the summer of 2010 when the new US Technician question pool became active, I decided I would create an audio only version of the flash card process.   I used the ARRL version of the study guide and the question pool which accompanies that book to record the question, the four possible answers, followed by the question again and then finally announce the correct answer. 

I believe the basis for success in using this method depends on first reading the study guide.  Second, the use of online sample test sites (many different ones are available), I recommend a site some friends of mine maintain called Ham Tests.  However, I really believe it is important for the student to READ THE BOOK!!!  Then (and only then) download my twenty audio sessions.

Each audio session is anywhere from 12 to 30 minutes in length (perfect for commute to work or school) and contain every question in the current question pool unless that question relates to a visual diagram.  The tech and general pools do have some questions that ask you to reference a diagram.  I mention these during the appropriate audio session only as a reminder to study the question directly from the book.

As of today, I have the Become A Ham US Technician (2010 – 2014) and US General (2011 – 2015) sessions available.  These sessions are available free of charge.  I will record the US Extra (2012 – 2016) audio sessions sometime late Spring or early summer to coincide with the new extra class question pool which starts 1 July 2012. 

You can download/stream these audio sessions direct from by clicking on the Become A Ham tab.  Alternatively, you can also download these sessions via RSS.  The RSS links to the Become A Ham US Tech and US General can be found on on the Become A Ham tab. 

I’ve received many positive comments on both the technician and general audio programs and I’m truly pleased to know many have experienced benefit from the audio programs.  If you are preparing for either the US Technician or the US General amateur radio exam, please visit  Good Luck!!!

Until next time…

73 de KD0BIK

Jerry Taylor, KD0BIK, is a regular contributor to and writes from Colorado, USA. He is the host of the Practical Amateur Radio Podcast. Contact him at [email protected].

3 Responses to “Become A Ham–A Shameless Plug”

  • Sean - KJ6TTR:

    Unfortunately, you are using Flash for the program. For the many of us who use iPad or iPhone exclusively, Flash doesn’t work. Perhaps you can create it without using Flash technology.

  • Sean - KJ6TTR:

    Hmmm. Spoke too soon. Despite the “warning” that Flash is required, the audio stream still worked on iPad. As Emily Litela from SNL would say, “Oh, never mind!”

  • Jerry Taylor - KD0BIK:

    Hi Sean,

    Yes, it is in my plan to add a more universal player. I just completed a migration from Joomla CMS to WordPress and just to get the site moved over and stable I went with what I had been using. But it is my plan to make the site friendly across multiple platforms. Like you, I also consume a lot of content on my iPad. So this is high on my list.


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