Exams

Last Updated: 09/26/2017
Exam Location: MARS Clubhouse, 27 Shell Rd., Main Floor, Mill Valley, CA 94941 (Directions to the Clubhouse)
MARS Alto Clubhouse
Clubhouse phone: (415) 389-6630 Please do not use to RSVP or pre-register for Special Sessions!
No one regularly checks the answering machine.
2017 Testing Dates Testing dates have been submitted to ARRL.
Date Day Registration Time NOTE
March 05, 2017 Sunday Afternoon 2:00PM – 2:30PM COMPLETED
May 21, 2017 Sunday Afternoon 2:00PM – 2:30PM COMPLETED
August 12, 2017 Saturday Morning 9:00AM – 9:30AM  COMPLETED
November 01, 2017 Wednesday Evening 6:45PM – 7:30PM SPECIAL SESSION FOR CLASS, You MUST Pre-register  [RSVP] to take an examination, or submit paperwork at this session. EVENING EXAMS ONLY!
November 18, 2017 Saturday Morning 9:00AM – 9:30AM Morning Exams ONLY
These are Test-Only sessions, no instruction is offered on test dates. Please plan to arrive before the registration time expires.
** It is strongly recommended that candidates visit: FCC Application for an FRN to obtain an FCC Registration Number (FRN) before appearing for examination. Otherwise candidates need to provide a SSN on their application.  The VEC & FCC prefer FRN’s on their applications.  [NOTE: Some VE Teams require an FRN in order to process and submit any application.  They will not accept a SSN. That is permitted under VE rules.]  Individuals holding a current or expired FCC issued license in any service, issued in the last ~ 25 years, already have an FRN, which should be used on your application, in place of your SSN.
Federal law requires the FCC to have applicants submit a tax payer identification number (TIN) in order to process any application. For individuals it is your SSN. But if the FCC has your SSN on file, they do issue a substitute number, a FCC Registration Number (FRN). Failure to supply a TIN, or an approved substitute, (either your SSN or FRN), or if your application is incomplete, will cause your application to be rejected and dismissed by the FCC [without any notice to you].  ( It only takes about 10 minutes, online, to apply and receive an FRN. ) If an applicant fails to answer the basic qualifying question, the FCC is free to reject the application without any notice.    If an applicant choses to enter their SSN on an application, at a session that accepts SSN’s (ours currently does), the FCC will issue a new FRN, if there is not an FRN associated with that SSN.   Individuals holding a current or expired FCC issued license in any service, issued in the last ~ 25 years, already have an FRN, which should be used on your application, in place of your SSN. Apply for a FCC Registration Number
NOTE:
Registration paperwork for dates with morning seatings begins promptly at 9:00 AM and testing begins by 9:30 AM.
Registration paperwork for dates with afternoon seatings begins promptly at 2:00 PM and testing begins by 2:30 PM.
Registration paperwork for special sessions begins at times listed above, and YOU MUST PRE-REGISTER! See RSVP below:   We MAY not be able to offer retesting at Special Sessions, and may not offer all test elements.  Special Sessions are normally associated with a class that we have just completed, and offered in association in the class to get students an exam opportunity.
Candidates who arrive later than either the 9:30 AM or 2:30 PM start of testing, may be accepted, only if it does not disrupt testing already in progress, and staffing is available.   Please plan to arrive before the testing starts.
YOU MUST PRE-REGISTER FOR ANY SPECIAL SESSIONS!  SEE: RSVP Below. DROP-INS ARE NOT ACCEPTED AT SPECIAL SESSIONS! When registering for Special Sessions, you must indicate which tests you want to take at the session. We reserve the right to require candidates appearing at a Special Session, have registered for and possess a valid FRN {FCC Registration Number}. **  PLEASE SEE ** Above.   We reserve the right to limit test elements taken at a Special Session, or not have retesting on a failed element attempt available. Candidates who arrive late for Special Sessions, without notice, may be refused.  Please plan to arrive before the testing starts.
Walk-ins are accepted, except as noted above. NO Walk-ins are accepted at Special Sessions! RSVP is always welcomed.
RSVP to: CONTACT ka6bqf@arrl.net or kg6tcj@arrl.net
Our VE Team members are accredited by the ARRL-VEC, and follow their directives, and FCC Part 97 Rules & Regulations.    [FCC Rules and VEC Rules do allow some latitude for VE Teams in creating their own forms and procedures.]
Applicants who require special testing procedures, due to a physical disability, need to contact the VE Liaison, prior to appearing at the exam session, in order to allow for special arrangements to be made; and also may be required to produce a physician’s certificate indicating the nature of the disability that requires special testing procedures. See: 47CFR 97.509(k)
Please bring:  (Required)   [To Any Testing Session]
1) Government issued photo identification. ( Driver license, passport, school ID with photo) ( Or two other forms of ID. ) See: What to Bring to an Exam Session for more information. [Minors who do not have photo ID, may present several forms of ID. See: What to Bring to an Exam Session for more information.]
2) Your Social Security Number or your FCC Registration Number (FRN), which appears on your FCC license, if licensed. **  PLEASE SEE ** ABOVE.  [NOTE: Some VE Teams require an FRN in order to process and submit any application.  They will not accept a SSN. That is permitted under VE rules.]  Individuals holding a current or expired FCC issued license in any service, issued in the last ~ 25 years, already have an FRN, which should be used on your application, in place of your SSN.   Federal law requires the FCC to have a taxpayer identification number, on file, to process any application.  Failure to supply a TIN , or an approved substitute, (either your SSN or FRN), or if your application is incomplete, will cause your application to be rejected and dismissed by the FCC [without any notice to you].  {You may get a notification from the VEC processing your application if it is incomplete. No guarantees!} If an applicant fails to answer the basic qualifying question, the FCC is free to reject the application without any notice.   Individuals holding a current or expired FCC issued license in any service, issued in the last ~ 25 years, already have an FRN, which should be used on your application, in place of your SSN.   Apply for a FCC Registration Number
3) The original and a photocopy of your FCC issued Amateur Radio License (if currently or previously licensed). [NOTE: The FCC ceased automatically mailing paper license copies in February 2015.  Never the less, applicants who want to take an exam to upgrade their license class, are still required to present their original license, or an approved substitute, for inspection by examiners, and a copy of their license, or a copy of an approved substitute, to submit to the VEC, in order to upgrade their license. See: 97.21 and 97.509(i) for further clarification. The copy will be submitted with a successful exam session application with their application to upgrade. Please See: “FCC Goes Paperless” & ARRL “How to Obtain License Copy”.]
4) The original and a photocopy of any Certificate of Successful Completion of Examination (CSCE) that you want to apply as an examination element credit.
5) The original and a photocopy of any other supporting documentation for an examination element credit that you may claim under FCC rules (examples: pre-1987 Technician Element 3 credit, or other element credit for an expired General, Advanced, or Amateur Extra license). Please click for further information: Exam Element Credit
6) Test fee of $15.00 (2017) (Which covers one test attempt for any or all of three examination elements; 2-Technician, 3-General, or 4-Extra Class). Checks or money orders should be made payable to ARRL-VEC. (Cash is also accepted, as long we have change.) (Sorry, no credit cards, debit cards, Bit Coin, or PayPal, accepted.)  [If you successfully complete your exam, time permitting, we may offer you an opportunity to take the next test element. May not apply at Special Sessions.] A second attempt at any exam element, time and staffing permitting, will require payment of a second test fee [$15.00 (2017)] (you will not get the same version of the exam).
7) A pen and a #2 pencil with eraser.   The Application Form should be filled out in ink and signed.   Answer Sheets may be completed in pencil.
You may download and pre-fill out, this Form NCVEC 605 UPDATED (application form) if you wish. (White paper is fine. To match color on the blank forms, print the form on ivory paper.) On or after August 21, 2017, you must use this updated form. (Previous versions of this Form NCVEC 605 should recycled.) Otherwise blank application forms will be available at our sessions. Applications should be filled out and signed in ink. Applicant Info Qualification Question Added 2017 [We have a limited supply of pens and pencils.]  PLEASE DO NOT COMPLETE “THE VE ONLY SECTION!”
DO NOT WRITE IN THE TEST BOOKLET!  PLEASE WRITE ONLY ON THE ANSWER SHEET or SCRATCH PAPER! (Any Scratch Paper used during an exam, must be collected by examiners.)
NOTE:  Candidates who wish to claim credit for any exam element, based on their previous license status, will be responsible for providing acceptable documentation for their claim, which is subject to review both by the VEC and by the FCC.  The VE’s at the session are only the first level of review! Please click for further information: Exam Element Credit
NOTE: The FCC ceased automatically mailing paper license copies in February 2015. Never the less, applicants who desire to take an examination to upgrade their license class, are still required to present the original license, or an approved substitute, for inspection by examiners, and a copy of their license, or  a copy of an approved substitute, to submit, in order to upgrade their license. See: 97.21 and 97.509(i) for further clarification. How to Obtain a Copy of Your License
Applicants who list a valid e-mail address (optional) on their application, should receive an e-mail from the FCC when their application is approved, with a .pdf copy attached of their “Official Copy” of their license to print out.
On or after August 21, 2017, you must complete this Form NCVEC 605 UPDATED (downloadable application form). Otherwise blank applications will be available at the sessions. Applications should be filled out and signed in ink.
Additional Information Form: RF SAFETY INFO
Applicant Info Qualification Question 2017
Examiners will need to look at your ID, to verify your identity. More than one examiner may have to look at your ID.
All tests are graded on-site at the test site.  We use grading templates. PLEASE blacken in your answer , or put an X though your answer.  Please do not circle your answer. (Circling your answer makes grading difficult, using templates! ) Do not leave without your signed CSCE if you pass any test.
If you successfully complete any examination element, you will be issued a Certificate of Successful Completion of Examination (CSCE), as proof, which you must sign. Do not leave without your signed CSCE if you pass any test.
Photocopies of your amateur license and any supporting documentation will be submitted with your application to the VEC for review.
Retesting on an unsuccessful element attempt will be offered, if time and staffing permits, upon payment of an additional test fee. Retesting may NOT be available at Special Sessions.
The examination is a closed-book test.  All paperwork, other than your test booklet, and your answer sheet must be put away.
Stand-alone calculators are permitted, provided that candidates can demonstrate that nothing is stored in memory. We have a supply of simple, basic calculators. Please do not plan to use your smartphone or tablet!  Sliderules are OK. (Different VE Teams may have different rules on calculators.  Yes, they / we can require you to use their / our calculator.)
Any scratch paper used during the examination must be collected by the examination team.
Cell phones must be turned off and put away during the examination. Cameras use is not permitted for applicants.
Examinations are proctored by a team of at least three of Volunteer Examiners, who follow the FCC and VEC rules in effect for conducting examinations.
The Element 2 – Technician and the Element 3 – General Exams are 35 question multiple-choice written tests. The Element 4 – Amateur Extra Exam is a 50 question multiple-choice written test.
As specified in 47CFR Section 97.503, the minimum passing scores for the Technician and General Exams is 26 correct answers; and the minimum passing score for the Amateur Extra Exam is 37 correct answers.
As specified in 47CFR 97.509(b.3), a team of at least 3 volunteer examiners, of sufficient license class, must administer any examination, unless the FCC and the responsible VEC agree otherwise.
FCC regulations require applicants to supply a valid US mailing address on their applications, for processing by the FCC (47CFR 97.23), where applicants can receive mail from the FCC.  Returned mail from the FCC will cause your license to be suspended or cancelled.
Contact: Randy Jenkins:    ka6bqf@arrl.net     (510) 526-4089 or (707) 557-5521  or Dave Hodgson:  kg6tcj@arrl.net
Other Test Venues – Find an Exam: ARRL Exam Locator
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MARS Resources/Liceneses – Operating Page
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