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Author Topic: What to do with the Advanced Class  (Read 28371 times)
WX7G
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« Reply #15 on: June 28, 2010, 03:36:33 PM »

N3DF, right you are. The NTIA was created in 1978. However at the NTIA website they state that the NTIA and the FCC have had a memorandam of understanding. http://www.ntia.doc.gov/ntiahome/press/2003/moujan31.htm
I assume they are referring to the IRAC.
« Last Edit: June 28, 2010, 03:40:16 PM by DAVE CUTHBERT » Logged
N3DF
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Posts: 252




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« Reply #16 on: June 29, 2010, 10:48:17 AM »

N3DF, right you are. The NTIA was created in 1978. However at the NTIA website they state that the NTIA and the FCC have had a memorandam of understanding. http://www.ntia.doc.gov/ntiahome/press/2003/moujan31.htm
I assume they are referring to the IRAC.

I was among NTIA's first employees in 1978.
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Neil N3DF
KX8N
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Posts: 542




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« Reply #17 on: July 07, 2010, 10:01:33 AM »

I believe the FCC figured nature would take its course and end the Advanced Class on its own over a period of time, without any official action or any public outcry. Smart move, really.Wink

That's true, and I personally know one Advanced operator in his mid 50's, so the class is going to be around a while longer just based on him.

What should be done with the Advanced frequencies when the last Advanced operator dies? Nothing. If a General wants to use those frequencies, upgrade to Extra and you will have those frequencies and then some.

Sounds like we are trying to come up with solutions to a problem that doesn't exist.
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NO6L
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« Reply #18 on: July 17, 2010, 01:07:43 AM »

"...I think it is worth just as much as an extra now without the 20 wpm code test...

Oh for crying out loud, as of yet, no one is going to take your Amateur Advanced away from you. And I'll tell you another thing regarding this "Advanced is as good as the 'New Extras'" tripe; Try operating in the Extra sub-bands and see how far that gets you. Because in the eyes of the law there's no difference between "new" or "old" Extras. Just because someone got their Advanced by knowing code does not warrant a seat on a pedestal, let alone a Brownie Button.

By the way, I've only resumed studying CW on and off in the past week and I'm already up to over 20 WPM, and there's noting to it. Why am I doing it? For many reasons, one of them is, because I can. But none are because I feel "guilty" about the day I chose to upgrade. I also suggest others try to do the same. Unless, you're afflicted with something like dyslexia, it won't hurt you a bit, and you may feel a sense of accomplishment like the day you passed your exam. For what it's worth, I know a severely dyslexic General that passed his exams orally who is trying to work with his dad, who was a CW Op in Korea, to learn CW hoping it may somehow "switch on" an ability to read. Doubtful, but you never know. At least it's an honorable try using an honorable tradition.

As for ideas to hurry an upgrade to Extra along; Hey, FCC, take a stand and mandate an upgrade and give them to the end of their renewal period or two years, which ever is more, to comply or take a demotion to General. Better yet, grandfather them into Extra with the consideration that they did need code for Advanced. The last would be leave things as they are and let the Advanced sub-bands "twist in the wind" when there are only a few left, stubbornly holding onto that ticket they got during the "Code Years". Actually, I would not have a problem with any of those.

Then, as for what happens to the Advanced sub-bands, split them into 1/3 to General and 2/3 to Extra, or 50/50, whatever works.

Now, as for a different topic under the same subject; Again, take a stand and tell the Novices they've got to the end of their current renewal period or two years, whichever is more, to upgrade to Technician or get demoted to CB, as it were. Their choice.

There, I fixed it. Why can't the FCC.

73
NO6L
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N2EY
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Posts: 3880




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« Reply #19 on: July 17, 2010, 08:19:47 AM »

Hey, FCC, take a stand and mandate an upgrade and give them to the end of their renewal period or two years, which ever is more, to comply or take a demotion to General. Better yet, grandfather them into Extra with the consideration that they did need code for Advanced. The last would be leave things as they are and let the Advanced sub-bands "twist in the wind" when there are only a few left, stubbornly holding onto that ticket they got during the "Code Years". Actually, I would not have a problem with any of those.

Then, as for what happens to the Advanced sub-bands, split them into 1/3 to General and 2/3 to Extra, or 50/50, whatever works.

Now, as for a different topic under the same subject; Again, take a stand and tell the Novices they've got to the end of their current renewal period or two years, whichever is more, to upgrade to Technician or get demoted to CB, as it were. Their choice.

There, I fixed it. Why can't the FCC.


The FCC doesn't think it's broken, so they won't fix it.

Keeping the Advanced and Novice as they are costs FCC practically nothing. Those license classes will disappear over time; right now they make up less than 10% of US hams.

All FCC has to do is to sit back and let the Novice and Advanced go away by attrition. No administrative work, no rules changes, no NPRMs, comments, reply comments, etc. Those who want the privileges just have to pass a test or two, no big deal. When the last one is gone, they just drop a paragraph or two from Part 97.

Look at every change the FCC has made to the amateur license structure and license requirements for the past 30 years and you'll see that the vast majority of them have resulted in less work and less cost for FCC. That's why we got the VE system, why the license term went to 10 years, etc. 

73 de Jim, N2EY
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NO6L
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Posts: 179




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« Reply #20 on: July 17, 2010, 08:50:32 PM »

That's why one of the three was to let things stand. It doesn't affect my privileges either way, I would just like to see:

1. The Advanced holders grandfathered. They deserve it, they were brought in under the code.

2. The bands reassigned. Which would get the Generals a little more room.

3. Things a little more simplified for new arrivals.

"Whatever will be, will be".

73 anyway
NO6L
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N2EY
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Posts: 3880




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« Reply #21 on: July 18, 2010, 04:18:33 AM »

It doesn't affect my privileges either way, I would just like to see:

1. The Advanced holders grandfathered. They deserve it, they were brought in under the code.

For 10 years prior to its closing, the Advanced was available with 5 wpm code and a medical waiver, which was just a doctor's note. Same as Novices.

Main thing is that others have formally proposed no-test grandfather upgrades, and every time FCC has said "No, just take the test."

There's also the fact that at least some Advanceds have publicly stated that they don't want to upgrade or be grandfathered to Extra. They *like* having a license class that's no longer available to new issues, for whatever reasons. So any grandfather/auto upgrade proposal would be opposed by them.

Of course the solution to that would be to give Advanceds full privileges but not change the name. Not likely, though.


2. The bands reassigned. Which would get the Generals a little more room..

Only on few 'phone bands - and it would decrease the incentive to upgrade. Plus FCC recently widened the 'phone subbands to the point where Generals now have at least as much 'phone space as they had back before incentive licensing went into effect in 1968.


3. Things a little more simplified for new arrivals.

Not really. New arrivals have three choices: Tech, General, Extra. All they require is multiple-choice tests from published
pools that can be downloaded free. Online practice tests at many sites including this one. The Extra has been earned by a 7 year old, the General by a 6 year old, and the Tech by a 5 year old - unless those records have been broken by even younger kids. How much easier can it be?

In any event, the simplest and easiest thing is to just let the Novice and Advanced disappear by attrition. Which will probably happen, though it will take years and years.

73 de Jim, N2EY
« Last Edit: July 18, 2010, 04:26:52 AM by James Miccolis » Logged
AB2T
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Posts: 246




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« Reply #22 on: August 01, 2010, 08:14:36 PM »

I say, "grandfather the Advanced licensees to Extra".

From what I remember, the Advanced theory was harder than the Extra theory.  The Advanced theory was much more math-intensive than the Extra.  The Extra focused more on obscure modes, digital, satellites, &c.

The old Advanced exam was comparable to the Extra exam.  Many Advanced hams have been active hams for many, many years.  Many have learned enough in the shack to rival the knowledge of someone who crammed for the Extra (I am included in the latter category -- I crammed my way through the Advanced and Extra).

Personally, I could care less if the Advanced hams were "bumped up".  I don't think that there would be a qualitative difference in technical knowledge or operating procedure.

I do respect those who think that the Extra must be earned.  I'm rather agnostic on the question.

73, Jordan
« Last Edit: August 01, 2010, 08:16:07 PM by Jordan » Logged
KC2WI
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Posts: 31


WWW

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« Reply #23 on: August 01, 2010, 08:19:11 PM »

In a word - nothing. It's fine the way it is.

Advanced class licensees had to pass a test to get the priviliges. No way should those priviliges be given to anyone who did not make the effort to pass the test.

Upgrade to Extra and you will have all the spectrum you need.

The idea of incentive licensing is to encourage learning and technical proficiency, per FCC part 97 basis and purpose.

Ham radio is not CB.
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AB2T
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Posts: 246




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« Reply #24 on: August 01, 2010, 08:32:08 PM »

In a word - nothing. It's fine the way it is.

Advanced class licensees had to pass a test to get the priviliges. No way should those priviliges be given to anyone who did not make the effort to pass the test.

Upgrade to Extra and you will have all the spectrum you need.

The idea of incentive licensing is to encourage learning and technical proficiency, per FCC part 97 basis and purpose.

Ham radio is not CB.

Well, I sort of agree.  As I said, I don't remember the specifics of the Advanced exam. It's been a while.  From a subjective standpoint I remember that the Advanced was more difficult than the Extra from a mathematical standpoint.  Memory often fails me.

If there is a significant overlap between the old Advanced question pool material and the new Extra test, then I wouldn't have a problem with grandfathering.

If the tests are truly divergent, then the status quo should remain.

I know quite a few Advanced operators that aren't CB-like.  They're upstanding "citizens" of the hobby.  Again, I am an Extra, have been for a longish time (16 years), and I only earned the ticket so I could operate all modes and all frequencies (vanity calls started the year I got the Extra).  I'm not tied to the "Extra" title at all.  I'm a ham first.

In my view, what you have been tested on is more important than the title under "Operating Privileges" on the ticket.  I did what I had to do at the time to get unrestricted access.  The situation has changed.  Change sometimes requires re-evaluation.

73, Jordan
« Last Edit: August 01, 2010, 08:35:52 PM by Jordan » Logged
KH6DC
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Posts: 642




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« Reply #25 on: September 18, 2010, 04:07:25 PM »

Why not just upgrade to Extra?  You made it to General so you can do it.
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73 and Aloha,
de Delwyn, KH6DC
K9AIM
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Posts: 1047




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« Reply #26 on: September 18, 2010, 05:41:33 PM »

There's also the fact that at least some Advanceds have publicly stated that they don't want to upgrade or be grandfathered to Extra. They *like* having a license class that's no longer available to new issues, for whatever reasons. So any grandfather/auto upgrade proposal would be opposed by them.

Of course the solution to that would be to give Advanceds full privileges but not change the name. Not likely, though.

I passed my Advanced at the FCC office in Chicago in 1977.  I could have passed the theory exam for Extra at the time, but not the 20 wpm code requirement.  I was barely 13wpm capable in the extra challenging (nerve-wracking) environment of being in an FCC office at age 15 with government officials giving you your test.  

Today, I could easily pass a 20 wpm code test -- even though I was largely QRT from 1979 till 2009.  Thank goodness I kept my license renewed -- one of the main reasons I did was I worked very hard to pass that exam and I appreciated being a licensed amateur radio operator.

I am an Advanced, have been one for 33 years and I am 48 years old today.  I oppose giving General class licensees Advanced privileges.  I would favor granting Advanced class license holders who passed their exam's at FCC offices Extra privileges while retaining the "advanced" class of license.  that or no change at all.  

I would also favor doing away with the Extra class and calling it Advanced.  now that there is no class available between General and Extra -- "Extra" is kind of a silly moniker imo. (it sort of made sense when it was a little extra compared to Advanced)

73, de K9AIM ..
« Last Edit: September 18, 2010, 05:45:02 PM by Robert Johnston » Logged
N2EY
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Posts: 3880




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« Reply #27 on: September 18, 2010, 06:24:05 PM »

I passed my Advanced at the FCC office in Chicago in 1977.  I could have passed the theory exam for Extra at the time, but not the 20 wpm code requirement.  I was barely 13wpm capable in the extra challenging (nerve-wracking) environment of being in an FCC office at age 15 with government officials giving you your test.  

I earned the Advanced at the age of 14 in 1968. Without really intending to.

What happened was that in the early summer I went to the FCC office and tried for the General. The FCC examiner couldn't read my "Palmer Method" copy well enough to give me 13 wpm credit, but he did give me 5 wpm and allowed me to try the General/Conditional/Tech written (all the same test back then). I passed, and got a Technician. (At the time you could hold both Tech and Novice at the same time).

The examiner did it that way so that all I'd have to do to get the General was to come back in 30 days or more and pass 13 wpm code.

So I went home and taught myself to block-print at 30 wpm, went back to the FCC office after the 30 days were up and passed the 13 wpm code.

As I was about to leave, the FCC examiner said "why don't you try the Advanced while you're here?"

I hadn't studied for it at all, and the Advanced was of no real value to a CW op like me except as a stepping stone to Extra. But there was no way a 14 year old ham in his right mind would say no to The Man From FCC. So I tried it and passed. A month or so later I *started* high school.

I am an Advanced, have been one for 33 years and I am 48 years old today.  I oppose giving General class licensees Advanced privileges.  I would favor granting Advanced class license holders who passed their exam's at FCC offices Extra privileges while retaining the "advanced" class of license.  that or no change at all.  

I see a bit of a contradiction there.

What you're saying is that you'd favor giving Advanceds a free no-test upgrade to Extra, (in operating privileges, anyway), but not giving Generals a free no-test upgrade to Advanced (in operating privileges).

Do you see the problem?

Of course it's really a moot point, because for years FCC has turned down all no-test free-upgrade proposals. Their reply has always boiled down to 'Just pass the test'.

I would also favor doing away with the Extra class and calling it Advanced.  now that there is no class available between General and Extra -- "Extra" is kind of a silly moniker imo. (it sort of made sense when it was a little extra compared to Advanced)

Don't hold your breath waiting for that, the license-class names go back to 1951 or before.

IMHO, it would make a lot more sense to have the Tech renamed "Basic", the General renamed "Limited" or "Intermediate", and the Extra renamed "Full".

Of course some wag would say that some Extras are already Full of something, so maybe that's not such a hot idea....

73 de Jim, N2EY
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K9AIM
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« Reply #28 on: September 18, 2010, 08:41:41 PM »


I see a bit of a contradiction there.

What you're saying is that you'd favor giving Advanceds a free no-test upgrade to Extra, (in operating privileges, anyway), but not giving Generals a free no-test upgrade to Advanced (in operating privileges).

Do you see the problem?

Of course it's really a moot point, because for years FCC has turned down all no-test free-upgrade proposals. Their reply has always boiled down to 'Just pass the test'.

you missed the logic of my suggestion: giving Extra privileges to Advanced licensees who passed an FCC proctored 13wpm code test and Advanced theory exam makes sense in that the difficulty of the exams that they passed warrants their being granted access to the 'extra' CW segments at least as much as new extra licensees who haven't passed any code test *and* the theory exam that Advanced licensees passed was probably as difficult as the one today's Extras pass.  Otoh, new General licensees have not passed exams comparable to the ones Advanced license holders did, thus they have no reasonable claim to Advanced privileges.


I would also favor doing away with the Extra class and calling it Advanced.  now that there is no class available between General and Extra -- "Extra" is kind of a silly moniker imo. (it sort of made sense when it was a little extra compared to Advanced)

Don't hold your breath waiting for that, the license-class names go back to 1951 or before.

IMHO, it would make a lot more sense to have the Tech renamed "Basic", the General renamed "Limited" or "Intermediate", and the Extra renamed "Full".

Of course some wag would say that some Extras are already Full of something, so maybe that's not such a hot idea....

73 de Jim, N2EY

I think "Full" or "Extra" does not convey to the layman what the license means as well as "Advanced" does.
General and Advanced (with room for "Beginner" or "Novice") is what makes sense to me.  Whether the FCC may or may not be open to a change to make the names more 'true' and thus better is not my concern -- what i think would be best for the hobby is. And I don't need to hold my breath if my position has substance.  I just keep breathing away ;-)

to paraphrase what George Bernard Shaw once pointed out: the reasonable man adapts himself to the world -- the unreasonable man expects the world to adapt itself to him -->  hence all progress depends on the unreasonable man
« Last Edit: September 18, 2010, 08:43:15 PM by Robert Johnston » Logged
N2EY
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Posts: 3880




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« Reply #29 on: September 19, 2010, 05:13:29 AM »

you missed the logic of my suggestion: giving Extra privileges to Advanced licensees who passed an FCC proctored 13wpm code test and Advanced theory exam makes sense in that the difficulty of the exams that they passed warrants their being granted access to the 'extra' CW segments at least as much as new extra licensees who haven't passed any code test *and* the theory exam that Advanced licensees passed was probably as difficult as the one today's Extras pass.  Otoh, new General licensees have not passed exams comparable to the ones Advanced license holders did, thus they have no reasonable claim to Advanced privileges.

The problem there is a practical one: How do you separate all the different "flavors" of each license level? What about old-time Generals?

For example, look at the different kinds of Advanceds:

1) those who passed 13 wpm code in FCC exam sessions, plus written exams that included schematic drawing, show-your work calculations, and essays

2) those who passed 13 wpm code in FCC exam sessions, plus multiple choice written exams

3) those who passed 13 wpm code in VEC exam sessions, plus multiple choice written exams from published pools

4) those who passed 5 wpm code in FCC exam sessions, got a medical waiver of 13 wpm code, and passed multiple choice written exams from published pools

5) those who passed 5 wpm code in VEC exam sessions, got a medical waiver of 13 wpm code, and passed multiple choice written exams from published pools

Who gets a free upgrade and who doesn't? How do we possibly sort them all out?

Now look at the different kinds of Generals:

1) those who passed 13 wpm code in FCC exam sessions, plus written exams that included schematic drawing, show-your work calculations, and essays

2) those who passed 13 wpm code in FCC exam sessions, plus multiple choice written exams

3) those who passed 13 wpm code in VEC exam sessions, plus multiple choice written exams from published pools

4) those who passed 5 wpm code in FCC exam sessions, got a medical waiver of 13 wpm code, and passed multiple choice written exams from published pools

5) those who passed 5 wpm code in VEC exam sessions, got a medical waiver of 13 wpm code, and passed multiple choice written exams from published pools

6) those who were Conditionals until the mid-1970s, took their exams by-mail, and who became Generals when the Conditional was phased out

7) those who were Technicians before March 21, 1987, took their exams by-mail, and who became Generals after April 15 2000

Who gets a free upgrade and who doesn't? How do we possibly sort them all out?

There are probably other varieties I missed, too. For example, before 1978 or so you had to pass both sending and receiving code tests. 

Do you see how it could be argued that a General who passed both sending and receiving 13 wpm code tests and written tests that included drawing diagrams, calculations and essays could say their exams were "harder" than those of an Advanced who passed all-multiple-choice writtens and didn't have to pass a sending test?

Rather than deal with all the variations and permutations, I think FCC would just say 'if you want the license, pass the test'.


IMHO, it would make a lot more sense to have the Tech renamed "Basic", the General renamed "Limited" or "Intermediate", and the Extra renamed "Full".

I think "Full" or "Extra" does not convey to the layman what the license means as well as "Advanced" does.
General and Advanced (with room for "Beginner" or "Novice") is what makes sense to me. 

The "Full/Limited/Basic" names say what the license privileges are. That's the idea.

I do agree that the current license names aren't very descriptive.

Whether the FCC may or may not be open to a change to make the names more 'true' and thus better is not my concern -- what i think would be best for the hobby is. And I don't need to hold my breath if my position has substance.  I just keep breathing away ;-)

to paraphrase what George Bernard Shaw once pointed out: the reasonable man adapts himself to the world -- the unreasonable man expects the world to adapt itself to him -->  hence all progress depends on the unreasonable man

Shaw was completely wrong about that. What he wrote there sounds good but is really just nonsense.

The reasonable man does not adapt himself to the world.

The reasonable man figures out where he must adapt himself to the world, and where the world can be changed.

For example, consider Albert Einstein. He was a reasonable man, yet he changed the world enormously.

73 de Jim, N2EY   
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