Do you think you are ready to test? Are you getting 85% or better on every practice test? It’s time to take the test! There are a couple of different ways to take your test. Some VE teams do online testing. It’s super convenient and saves the fuel needed to drive to a different location. If you don’t like the idea of testing over the internet, you can do in-person tests. Do what is convenient and comfortable for you.
First, a bit of terminology to make sure you are using common definitions:
- VEC – Volunteer Examinator Coordinator is a group that offers tests. They work directly with the FCC to record your test results
- VE – Volunteer Examiner is a person that has been approved to proctor tests for the VEC.
- VE Team – This is a team of Volunteer Examiners. There needs to be at least 3 VEs to proctor an exam.
There are several different options for online testing. You can find most of the online sessions at https://hamstudy.org/sessions/remote. There is also another VEC that does remote testing, with the exception of the pandemic, they typically test Alaskan candidates. Make sure to read and understand how the VE group conducts its tests. Some only require a webcam, others require multiple cameras.
In-person testing is a very popular way to get your license. Many of these groups are localized to a region with ARRL being nationwide. Some VECs take some time to get your callsign after you pass, others are within a couple of days. If you have any questions ask your local club and they should be able to direct you in the direction. Otherwise, you can look for sessions through these VECs:
- ARRL – The biggest VEC of them all and typically offers sessions nationwide. I am a VE with this organization.
- Anchorage Amateur Radio Club – Does mostly remote sessions in Alaska. But does sometimes test others outside of Alaska.
- Greater L.A. Amateur Radio Group(GLAARG) – This group does a lot of online testing. I am a VE with this organization.
- Laurel Amateur Radio Club, Inc. – This group is quite popular in some areas.
- W5YI-VEC – This group is quite popular in some areas.
You can see a full list of FCC Certified VECs.
Note: If anyone wants to add more clarification to this list, please contact me.