Online US Ham Radio Exams

The COVID-19 global pandemic has certainly had a major impact to all of us.  While I certainly don’t need to point out all the pain points, for those who may stumble onto this blog posting you’re either interested in getting your ham radio license, planning to upgrade your license, already licensed at the level you want to be or just simply wanting to read the entire Internet while you are quarantined at home with nothing better to do.  If you fall into the latter category, then you’ve pretty much reached the end of the line.  Smile

Controversy Galore

I’m sure the very mention of  moving away from the standard VE exam process has some old men stirred up beyond imagination.  I get it…I really do.  The most obvious concern of course would be some form of cheating.  I’ve also heard concerns that this new method of remote testing will replace the in-person exam process forever.   Then there’s the category of just being reluctant to change and the idea of “this is how we’ve always done it” mentality.  For those who are always reluctant to change, may I suggest reading a book titled “Who Moved My Cheese”, available on Amazon.  But I digress.

The Right Move

I personally support this idea of conducting online ham radio exams.  I believe the technology exists to be able to conduct a secure exam process and I believe within the hobby and service of amateur radio we have the resources to make this happen.  After all, one of the key points of our “Radio Amateur’s Code” is being Progressive!

More Information

Richard Bateman, KD7BBC who is also the owner of recently recorded a short video discussing how he (and others) are working to help bring Online Amateur Radio exams to the US very soon.  I’ve embedded the video below for your ease in viewing.

Watch this video on YouTube.

Final Thoughts

As I said at the beginning, I do understand the concern some amateurs have regarding the subject of online exam testing.  But I have a greater concerns over how this pandemic will impact our hobby. I truly believe the efforts being led by Richard will only do our hobby good.   I’m sure at some point life will get back to some kind of normal.  I’m certainly looking forward to finding out just what the new normal will be.

What do you think?

Until next time…

73 de KDØBIK (Jerry)

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].

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