Exam Day

What to Bring to an ARRL Exam Session

Mandatory Before the Exam

FCC Registration Number (FRN)

Examinees are required by the FCC to submit your FRN with your license application form. New license applicants must create an FCC user account and register their Social Security Number (SSN) in the FCC Commission Registration System (CORES) before attending exam sessions. Registrants will be assigned an FRN which will be used in all license transactions with the FCC. For instructions on how to register your SSN and receive an FRN from the FCC, visit the CORES Registration page and the FCC’s Registration instructions page.

Valid Email Address          

FCC rules require a valid email address on the application. Paperless now, the FCC email correspondence includes delivery of the official copy of your Amateur Radio license.


1.  One Legal Photo Identification

a. State Driver’s License

b. Government issued Passport

c. Military or Law Enforcement Officer Photo ID card          

d. Student School Photo ID card          

e. State Photo ID card      

2.  If no photo ID is available,
two forms of identification

a. Non-photo State ID card (some states still have them)          

b. Birth certificate (must have the appropriate seal)          

c. Social security card          

d. Employer’s wage statement or Minor’s work permit          

e. School ID card          

f. School or Public Library card          

g. Utility bill, bank statement or other business correspondence that     specifically names the person; or a postmarked envelope addressed to the person at his or her current mailing address as it appears on the Form 605.

Students and Minors

Students or minors without a photo ID need to bring only one of the above items if a legal guardian presents their photo ID. Otherwise two non-photo IDs are required.

Minor children (under the age of 18) may be accompanied in the room by an adult during the test.

Current FCC License

If applicable, bring a printed copy of your Amateur Radio license or be able to show proof of the license in the official FCC database. Acceptable copies or printouts of licenses are available from the following sources:

The official license or reference license printed from the FCC website or license data printed from the ARRL website or the QRZ website.

The original(s) and photocopy(s) of any Certificates of Successful Completion of Examination (CSCE) you may hold from previous exam sessions. If your license has already been issued by the FCC, the CSCE showing license credit is not needed.

The candidate is required to show proof of the current license to the team, but the team is no longer required to submit the proof to the VEC. Expired license proof must be submitted to the team and to the VEC for processing to FCC. These photocopies will not be returned. Instructions on how to obtain an official FCC license copy are on our Obtain License Copy web page.

Testing Materials

Two number two pencils with erasers and a pen for in-person sessions.      

A calculator with the memory erased and formulas cleared is allowed. Slide rules and logarithmic tables are acceptable, as long as they are free of notes and formulas.

You may not bring any written notes or calculations into the exam session.

Electronic Devices

Cell phone must be silenced or turned off during the exam session and the phones’ calculator function may not be used. In addition, iPhones, iPads, Androids, smartphones, Blackberry devices and all similar electronic devices with a calculator capability, may NOT be used.     


Bring a check, money order, or cash to cover the exam session fee(s). Check the ARRL VEC’s current exam fees.

Basic Qualification Questions

Be aware that some information about you will be made publicly available on the FCC’s website (FCC Licensee Privacy) including a felony conviction status. All applicants must answer the Basic Qualification Question (felony conviction status question) on the 605 Form at the exam session. Applicants that answer “YES” for the question must follow these FCC Qualification Instructions.

last update 4-19-2022