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Why should I?
How do I?
The Tech exam is first
Then General
And finally Extra<
Code is optional
Questions? Ask UMARC
Two busy hams enjoying Field Day

A website for:

Originally provided by: William Becher, AA8RW

Last updated:


Note: If you are new to this site go to the Welcome page for a better understanding how to use this site.

ATTENTION U of M STUDENTS: A copy of the ARRL "Ham Radio License Manual" 2nd edition is available for overnight checkout at the 2nd floor Reserve Desk in the Duderstadt Center (call number PC 10). It is an excellent book to study for the FCC licensing requirements. It contains everything needed, including the entire FCC Question Pool questions and answers, along with explanations for each answer. A quick read is typically all that is necessary to pass the exam.

BULLETIN: IT"S OFFICIAL! Morse code requirement ended Friday, February 23, 2007. The only requirement now for the Technician Class license is the successful completion of the Technician and General written exams.

Important Note: The questions in the Technician Class question pool changed on July 1, 2010. If you use a question list, textbook and/or another website to study for the Technician exam, make certain the questions are valid for the date you plan on taking the exam. With the many changes continually made by the FCC to amateur radio rules there is a question pool update evry 3 or 4 years. Unfortunately some resources claim to be correct when often they are not.


On the How To page you looked at the licensing process and saw that:
o Getting your license is simple
o Almost everyone is eligible
o The Technician license is the first of three you can earn
o The Technician exam is made up of 35 multiple-choice questions (only 26 correct answers required to pass)
o There are various ways to prepare for the exam
o The resources to help prepare are many
o An exam session is administered monthly by ARROW, the local Ann Arbor ham club (See left sidebar)
o The Morse code capability is NOT a prerequisite for any of the license levels although it is still a valuable capability to possess

The intent of the remainder of this page is to describe some of the many resources available to help you prepare for the exam and some of the resources you'll use after you have your license. Return to top

The Exam Questions

One of the most helpful resources available in preparation for the Technician exam is a list of all possible exam questions along with their answers. Fortunately this list is available in many ways**. You can find it:
  • As Chapter 11 of the ARRL, "Ham Radio License Manual" 2nd edition from ARRL (See left sidebar) or from the Duderstadt Center Reference Desk (See the note in blue at the top of this page.)
  • By purchasing books that contain the list - See the Books Resource section below
  • Or Downloading the list from the ARRL website in MS Word, pdf or txt versions
**Important Note: If you use a textbook and/or another website to study for this exam, make certain they contain questions valid between June 30, 2010 and June 30, 2014. You will find some resources that claim to be correct but are not. Return to top


There are many courses offered locally as well as nationally
  • ARROW (local) - Offers an instructor led course that includes both theory and parctice sessions and is followed by administering the license exam, all done in one day. The passing rate is impressive - historically approaching 100%!
  • ARRL (elsewhere) has numerous other suggestions and references.
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KB6NU Study Guide

For those who are adept at using "CliffsNotes" or would like to have an excellent summary of the exam answers to scan before sitting for your license, Dan KB6NU, has prepared a Technician Class License Study Guide to help prepare for the techician exam. Be certain to look at it, it's a worthwhile addition to your license preparation library. It should reduce your study time and it's free! Return to top

Practice Exams

Once you have studied the questions and believe you are ready to take the exam, it is a good idea to test your understanding on several practice exams. Fortunately, there are numerous resources that provide these. But once again make certain the questions are the latest. (See the note under "Exam Questions".):
  • Internet (These have only been given a cursory look)
    • - Michael Burkhardt's W8MHB Ham Radio Shacketeria. A well thoughtout technique for presenting the practice exams.
    • - $29.95 for a 2 year subscription (Money back if you fail the test). We have not used this, but it looks like an excellent way to learn all you need to know. There is a free trial to see if you like this web-based system.
    • - Free. Looks worthwhile.
    • - Free. Haven't used this one yet but it looks good. It tries to emphsize the questions you missed which is helpful on subsequent passes through the questions.
  • Books - Many of the Book Resources listed below contain copies of the questions. A few contain sample exams. Be certain to read the publishers description before purchasing.
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Book Resources

The latest editions of these books, with the exception of the "ARRL Ham Radio License Manual, 2nd Ed.", have not been reviewed by UMARC. However, earlier editions have been examined and, in some cases, used to obtain a license. All were judged to be useful as a study tool. Nevertheless, you should look carefully at the descriptions published on the websites before purchasing to ensure that it meets with your needs.

ARRL Amateur Radio License Publications

The ARRL Ham Radio License Manual, 2nd ed. contains all the information needed to pass the Technician Class license exam: questions, answers and a well written explanation of the topics necessary for an understanding of the principles underlying the questions, as well as Ham radio in general. It can be read in a short time and, if read once or twice along with a thorough review of all the possible exam questions listed in the Appendix, it almost assuredly will lead to a successful completion of the exam.
The ARRL Tech Q&A, 5th edition contains all the exam questions with answers and brief explanations of the answers to all questions. It is significantly less expository than the Ham Radio License Manual.

W5YI Group Amateur Radio publications

2010-2014 Technician Class by Gordon West study guide contains answer explanations with highlighted keywords and "Ham Hints" and hundreds of related website links. Valid for questions between July 1, 2010 through June 30, 2014.
2010-2014 Technician Audio CD Theory Course covers all the questions in a logical topic sequence. A 4 audio CD set and a track-by-track user's guide. Goes with the companion Tech Class Study Guide. Valid for questions between July 1, 2006 through June 30, 2010.
Gordon West's 2006 - 2010 Technician Book & Software Package. A complete home study course with the NEW 2010-2010 Gordon West Technician Manual, Ham Study Software and FCC Part 97 Rule Book. Contains everything you need to pass the FCC No-Code Technician examination. All questions, answers, and explanations of the answers are presented "on screen." Print out sample tests or take exams at your PC!
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Some Useful References (after you are licensed)

All of the following are ARRL publications. Detailed descriptions for these, and many other, can be found by going to ARRL Store and searching for the topic of interest. All can be purchased directly from ARRL.

Note: Sometimes you can find bargains prices for these references at but be aware, new editions are routinely published as new Ham interests arise. Although the basic underlying radio theory remains unchanged, the new ideas and examples illustrated in the later editions can be significantly different. Consequently, although you can find out-of-date bargins, you should be careful, doing so may prevent your entry into new and exciting Ham activities. Buy older editions only after thorough research or consulting with other more experienced UMARC members or other Hams before doing so.

The FCC Rule Book contains the latest FCC rules as published in Part 97 along with explanations and interpretations. Because it is essential, as well as mandatory, that all radio amateur operators follow all the rules this book can be a valuable additions to any Ham library.

You will not be in Ham radio long before you realize there are many procedures to learn when operating your equipment. The ARRL Operating Manual, 9th ed. is a valuable resource if you hope to hone your skills as a Ham operator. It will introduce you to all the "How to's" of amateur radio.

One of the most important parts of successful radio operation is the antenna. Without a good antenna even the best radio will not work well. The ARRL Antenna Book, 21st ed. is the tool you need to understand what to do to effect good transmission and reception. The book not only explains the theory but gives many valuable insights into the construction of antennas. Also included is a CD ROM with software utilities for modeling a variety of antenna configurations.

The ARRL Handbook, 2011 ed. is an updated technical reference that has been used by Hams since 1926. It explains the fundamental theory of all aspects of amateur radio, from electricity to digital modes, illustrates many practical do-it-yourself projects and contains many valuable reference data. It is a book that all Hams should take a detailed look at and seriously consider including on their bookshelf.
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Why don't you take a peek at the General website?

Go Blue!

73 de W8UM

Last updated: 11/15/10

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Exam Questions


Study Guide

Practice Exams

Book Resources

Some Useful References

Useful Links:

Technician Class Pool

ARRL License publications

ARRL Ham Radio License Manual (Available at the Duderstadt Center Reserve Desk)

ARRL Ham Radio License Manual (Website)

ARRL Tech Q&A, 5th ed.

W5YI Group publications

Tech Class Study Manual

Tech Class Audio CD Theory Course

Technician Book & Software Package

ARRL Tecnical publications

FCC Rule Book

Operating Manual

Antenna Book

2012 Handbook


Ham Radio Clubs

University (UMARC)
Ann Arbor (ARROW)
National (ARRL)