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Author Topic: studying for General Class  (Read 12671 times)
KD4RLV
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Posts: 11




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« on: November 11, 2012, 04:23:57 PM »

Hi there,
Was wondering what study techniques you use to study for the Exam..It's been years since I have been to school..any help is greatly appreaciated...73's KD4RLV Peter Eskey
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KD5GR
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Posts: 104




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« Reply #1 on: November 11, 2012, 06:47:50 PM »

I just passed my Extra exam by using Gordon West's book and the related testing software.  I read the book once, then starting taking practice exams.  His software lets you take a practice exam, or take a test with every question in a section.  If I had any questions on an issue, I'd read that portion of the book again.

Being able to study the exact exam questions (702 for Extra) was a lot different than when I studied for my Advanced in the 70's!

Chas.
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N5TMC
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Posts: 5




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« Reply #2 on: November 11, 2012, 07:30:06 PM »

Go to shenware.com and download Amateur radio test software. My wife just took her tech and general test and passed them both after 2 months of study.
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K4EZD
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Posts: 100




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« Reply #3 on: November 12, 2012, 01:06:57 PM »

I used HamTestOnline, the online practice site, to study for my extra and passed it easily.  I have no formal electronics background and found their format easy to follow.  And if you are not comfortable with math I found that it is possible to omit all the math related questions and still have a comfortable margin for error. 
Good luck!
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KB2YAN
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Posts: 9




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« Reply #4 on: November 12, 2012, 09:41:45 PM »

Get the ARRL Handbook and read it cover to cover.

http://www.arrl.org/shop/ARRL-Handbook-2013-Hardcover-Edition/
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WI4P
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Posts: 46




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« Reply #5 on: November 16, 2012, 01:49:54 PM »

I used HamTestOnline, the online practice site, to study for my extra and passed it easily.  I have no formal electronics background and found their format easy to follow.  And if you are not comfortable with math I found that it is possible to omit all the math related questions and still have a comfortable margin for error. 
Good luck!

I'll second EZD's comments.  Passed tech w/100% and gen'l w/98% on same day after about 15 hrs of study.  Passed extra 96% three months later after another 15 hrs.  highly recommend hamtestonline.

73, John
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K5UNX
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Posts: 310


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« Reply #6 on: November 21, 2012, 03:48:13 PM »

I just passed my Extra exam by using Gordon West's book and the related testing software.  I read the book once, then starting taking practice exams.  His software lets you take a practice exam, or take a test with every question in a section.  If I had any questions on an issue, I'd read that portion of the book again.

Being able to study the exact exam questions (702 for Extra) was a lot different than when I studied for my Advanced in the 70's!

Chas.

I did the same. Read Gordo's book and took practice tests with the software I got with the book. Gordo's book comes with or without software I think. At least on amazon.com it does.

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W1JKA
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Posts: 1814




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« Reply #7 on: December 07, 2012, 03:25:33 AM »

Key technique is MEMORIZATION,as stated above the use of various study guides,tests on line,ect.will get you any  class of license.The only practical and needed part of any class exam is the FCC rules and regulations for a particular class of license.As we all know the ability to memorize and correctly answere  the technical  side of the exam proves nothing other than adequate retention ability.
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KF7TKK
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Posts: 3




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« Reply #8 on: December 30, 2012, 07:24:17 AM »

At the ripe old age of 73 I found I was no longer the A+ super genius I was when I was seventeen.  So I went with the total immersion approach: the ARRL books, Gordo's books, joined a Ham club, subscribed to the magazines and finally went with the HamTestOnline for practice.  In taking all three tests I passed but did miss two questions, but that was only the beginning of my learning.  Now on to Morse!
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AB9TA
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Posts: 20




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« Reply #9 on: January 07, 2013, 10:32:00 PM »

Peter,
An important part of any test prep is knowing what you don't know..
A good way to find out is to take practice tests to see the areas you're weak in - Then study the heck out of them.
Please note, this isn't memorization, it's practicing under realistic conditions.

When I was studying to get re-licensed, I used the QRZ.com practice tests here: http://www.qrz.com/hamtest/. They give you 35 or 50 question tests randomly generated from the actual question pools. You'll have to go through a whole bunch of practice runs before you get the same set of questions. Best of all, they're no-cost!!

Take one of the tests, it will give you a score and you can see what you missed. Then go and look up the material, study it hard, and take another test.. You'll end up concentrating your study effort where you need it most. Don't worry if you start off with bad scores - This is how you learn and improve.
Keep doing this often until you get consistently good scores..  Not only will you learn the ham radio material, you'll see if you have any bad test-taking habits you need to break. For example, not reading the question thoroughly, jumping at the first correct-looking answer, etc..

And just for fun, take a couple of the Technician tests, just to see if you are still able to pass.. Take a couple of the Extra tests, you'll probably do better that you thought!

See you on HF (especially Digital modes!)

73!
Bill AB9TA
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N6SBN
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Posts: 158


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« Reply #10 on: January 11, 2013, 12:04:04 AM »

  I did it a little differently.  I set up a receiver and an antenna.  When it didn't work, I studied the heck out of the AARL antenna book. Playing with a receiver drove my interest.  I had questions.  I Studied the heck out of the online materials.   This is different than cramming.    The study material became much more interesting.

  That said, I will still study the books and take the practice tests.
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W9KDX
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Posts: 771




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« Reply #11 on: January 13, 2013, 06:33:25 AM »

Unfortunately, as far as I could see, the ARRL book is nearly worthless and in some cases very confusing for the General exam.  The problems start with their refusal to group chapters and questions in the same way that the exam does and the difficulties just increase.

I spent all the time studying the test questions.  The West computer test DOES NOT allow you to mark off the questions you already know and it also DOES NOT keep track of where you left off when you exited the software so I found their practice exams worthless.

So, it boils down to the West book being very good and the ARRL test software being the the better of the two.  Good luck, and take plenty of practice exams.
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Sam
W9KDX
K1PJR
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Posts: 148




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« Reply #12 on: January 28, 2013, 09:31:21 AM »

OK my 2 cents.

For both tech and general I simply read the ARRL license manuals and took practice tests here at eham. I memorized certain facts (such as frequencies) but I made sure I understood the theory.  If I got confused I would spend time on the net trying to find an answer.  It took me longer to study but I really understood the material.

I'm now studying for my Extra.  This time I'm using the ARRL licenase manual in addition to Ham Test Online.  Again, I could simply memorize the answers but I enjoy reading about theory so I'll just plod along until I understand just about everything in the book.  I could simply use Ham Test but I'm in no rush.  My way forces me to study and understand.  It works for me.

Good luck!

Phil
K1PJR
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KG6AF
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Posts: 367




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« Reply #13 on: January 28, 2013, 11:14:17 AM »

While I haven't used it, I've heard good things about HamTestOnline.

Another useful resource is KB6NU's free No-Nonsense General Class License Study Guide, which you can download here:

http://kb6nu.com/wp-content/uploads/2007/09/2011-No-Nonsense-General-Class-License-Study-Guide.pdf
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N8YQX
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Posts: 79




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« Reply #14 on: February 03, 2013, 01:25:15 PM »

Peter,
An important part of any test prep is knowing what you don't know..
A good way to find out is to take practice tests to see the areas you're weak in - Then study the heck out of them.
Please note, this isn't memorization, it's practicing under realistic conditions.

I second AB9TA's comment.  I would find out how you score without actually studying.  Before I took my General, I took the on-line practice test several times, and I figured out that I picked up enough along the way to take educated guesses and score a passing score every time.  The score was never stellar, but it was enough to pass.  Remember, you don't need to get a perfect score, just enough to pass the test.

So, give my method a try first.  You may already know enough to pass the General.

Good luck,

-N8YQX
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73,
N8YQX
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