Note: BARC is not currently giving exams due to the COVID pandemic. There are some organizations that offer remote exams or have resumed in-person exam sessions; see the ARRL exam session search page to find one near you.
BARC offers Volunteer Exam sessions four times a year. All are held in the Community Room at Brookline Police Headquarters, 350 Washington St., Brookline Village. The time and date of the next exam session can be found on the Calendar page.
We administer tests for Technician, General, and Amateur Extra license classes.
Testing is by reservation only. You must reserve in advance with either Jim Clogher, N1ICN (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Linda Blair, NA1I (email@example.com). If you cannot make it for some reason, we ask that you contact us as soon as possible. We also ask that you be prompt, since we start the exam when everyone has arrived.
Please bring the following with you:
- Your current license and a photocopy, if you are upgrading. We will keep the photocopy.
- Any Certificates of Successful Completion of Exams (CSCEs) you are claiming, and a photocopy of each. We will keep the photocopy.
- Your FCC Registration Number (FRN). This can be obtained by visiting this website. You must provide both an FRN and a valid email address to obtain a license.
- A valid photo ID, or two valid non-photo IDs.
- A pen and pencil.
- A calculator (if you need one). We will need to check to make sure any memories have been cleared and you cannot use a calculator app.
- $15. If you pass an exam, you may take subsequent tests without paying an additional fee. Repeating an exam requires the payment of an additional $15 fee.
The needed FCC forms will be provided.
After your exam
If you’ve taken the exam and passed, congratulations and welcome to Amateur Radio! It usually takes one and a half to two weeks for your license to be issued. For status, you can go to the FCC Universal Licensing System page and click “Licenses” in the list of search options. Once your call sign has been issued, you are free to operate, within the restrictions of your new license class, of course.
If you upgraded an existing license, the white CSCE (Certificate of Successful Completion of Examination) form is evidence of your new license class. Until your new license is issued (appearing on the FCC website) you can operate with new privileges, but you need to add /AG (authorized General) or /AE (authorized Extra) to your call if you’re transmitting on a frequency your old license doesn’t allow you to use.
Most people look up other hams on qrz.com; you can look up your own current license information there as well. Once your call is issued, you may want to register with the site and add extra information to your callsign page.
You are welcome to come to any meeting of the Boston Amateur Radio Club or to reach out to an officer if you need help getting started. There is a weekly club net on Mondays at 9:00 p.m. on the 145.230 Boston repeater; see this page for details.