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Author Topic: Bring back the Advanced Class  (Read 55312 times)
WV1N
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Posts: 19




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« on: January 21, 2013, 11:14:29 AM »

When I sat for my extra exam they asked questions about digital, SSTV and other modes.  I intent was to show competence in all aspects of amateur radio.  The one mode that is not currently tested is the CW mode.  Those who want full privileges in the lower cw segments should show competency in cw just like the test requires knowledge of TV and digital modes.  This is the essence of the Amateur Extra Class.  The Advanced Class should be available to any ham who wants full phone privileges without the need to learn cw.
Bill, wv1n









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WN2C
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Posts: 470




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« Reply #1 on: January 21, 2013, 06:54:15 PM »

I disagree.  What they should do once all is give full privileges to all Advanced holders an leave the privilege segments where they are now so that upgrading from General to Extra really gives some incentive to upgrade.

Rick  wn2c
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K8GU
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Posts: 719


WWW

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« Reply #2 on: January 22, 2013, 04:56:49 AM »

How long has it been that the Morse testing requirement was dropped and we're still complaining about it?  By the way, I agree with the sentiment that the Extra should have retained the Morse test for the very reason you articulate, but I don't think we're going back to Morse testing or more license classes.

I held every one of the post-incentive licensing classes except Novice (T, T+, G, A, E) on my way and that was a gratuitous amount of paperwork for everyone involved.  The T, G, E, framework is much more sensible.
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N3DF
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Posts: 252




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« Reply #3 on: January 22, 2013, 08:07:29 AM »

That battle fought and lost.
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Neil N3DF
N2EY
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Posts: 3895




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« Reply #4 on: January 22, 2013, 09:16:56 AM »

How long has it been that the Morse testing requirement was dropped and we're still complaining about it?

Six years next month. But only a few are still complaining.

By the way, I agree with the sentiment that the Extra should have retained the Morse test for the very reason you articulate, but I don't think we're going back to Morse testing or more license classes.

The problem is that if they kept it (as many hams wanted), they'd have to keep medical waivers too. Not gonna happen!

73 de Jim, N2EY
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N2EY
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Posts: 3895




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« Reply #5 on: January 22, 2013, 09:19:31 AM »

Those who want full privileges in the lower cw segments should show competency in cw just like the test requires knowledge of TV and digital modes.  This is the essence of the Amateur Extra Class. 

Not really.

Yes, the Extra gives another 25 kc. of CW/data space (not just cw space!) on 4 HF bands. But it also gives a lot more 'phone space, too! And access to more vanity call blocks. And more VE privileges.

FCC did what they did. Not gonna change any time soon.

73 de Jim, N2EY
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AA4PB
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Posts: 12899




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« Reply #6 on: January 22, 2013, 09:51:10 AM »

To my knowledge, Morse was the only "proficiency" test the FCC ever had. It's akin to requiring a typing test to operate RTTY or PSK31 or voice training to operate phone modes.
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N2EY
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Posts: 3895




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« Reply #7 on: January 22, 2013, 10:40:04 AM »

To my knowledge, Morse was the only "proficiency" test the FCC ever had.

It's the only skill test, yes. I'd hardly consider the 5 or even 20 wpm tests to be real "proficiency" tests.

It's akin to requiring a typing test to operate RTTY or PSK31 or voice training to operate phone modes.

Not really. Most folks who become hams can talk and understand at least one spoken language. And most folks who try to operate RTTY or PSK31 can read text and know how to hunt-and-peck type on a keyboard.

What made Morse Code different is that most folks didn't know it from other sources (yes, a few did). Which is what all the fuss was really about - folks not wanting to learn something.

73 de Jim, N2EY
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WB2WIK
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Posts: 20612




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« Reply #8 on: January 22, 2013, 03:34:32 PM »

It ain't coming back.

I "wish" the Novice class license would come back for various reasons, but I'm sure it won't, either.
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AA4PB
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Posts: 12899




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« Reply #9 on: January 22, 2013, 04:08:05 PM »

"And most folks who try to operate RTTY or PSK31 can read text and know how to hunt-and-peck type on a keyboard."

Most folks can look up dots and dashes on a chart too - at 1 or 2 WPM  Grin  Sometimes I wish there was a typing test for RTTY and PSK31 in order to speed things up a little. Maybe there wouldn't be so many "brag files" sent.

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WN2C
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Posts: 470




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« Reply #10 on: January 22, 2013, 06:21:59 PM »

According to the ARRL, the stated goal of code testing as published in QST or some other ARRL publication (a long time ago) was to filter out some people from becoming hams.  Now some of you are going to blast me for this I know, but I did read this in an early ARRL publication. The code / no code debate for licensing is over and done...time to move on...time for those that want to learn it, learn it and for those that don't...then don't.

Rick  wn2c
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N2EY
Member

Posts: 3895




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« Reply #11 on: January 23, 2013, 05:39:26 AM »

According to the ARRL, the stated goal of code testing as published in QST or some other ARRL publication (a long time ago) was to filter out some people from becoming hams.  Now some of you are going to blast me for this I know, but I did read this in an early ARRL publication.

Where and when, exactly?

And if it was actually printed...Was it one person's opinion or was it the reason the FCC did it?

There's a BIG difference between the two!

Couple of facts:

1) Until 2003, the ITU-R treaty required code tests for amateur licenses below a certain frequency.

2) Whenever the issue came up, the majority of those bothering to comment favored at least some code testing.

73 de Jim, N2EY
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N3DF
Member

Posts: 252




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« Reply #12 on: January 23, 2013, 07:49:42 AM »

According to the ARRL, the stated goal of code testing as published in QST or some other ARRL publication (a long time ago) was to filter out some people from becoming hams.  Now some of you are going to blast me for this I know, but I did read this in an early ARRL publication. The code / no code debate for licensing is over and done...time to move on...time for those that want to learn it, learn it and for those that don't...then don't.

Rick  wn2c

Doubt it.
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Neil N3DF
N2EY
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Posts: 3895




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« Reply #13 on: January 23, 2013, 08:46:59 AM »

Doubt it.

I think there once was such an article in QST. But it was an op-ed piece, not an official policy of ARRL or FCC.

What it came down to was this: The article writer's opinion was that most new hams come to ham radio without any code skills, and that having to "invest" some time and effort into learning the code was A Good Thing. Not to keep anyone out, but to insure that those who "got in" had a certain personal investment. The writer's opinion was also that the written tests weren't adequate to do this because lots of folks have adequate electronic know-how, word-association and guessing skills to pass them after relatively little study.

IIRC, this opinion appeared in the late 1960s or the 1970s, after the written exams were all-multiple-choice, repeaters were The New Thing and the cb boom was peaking.

73 de Jim, N2EY
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K9AIM
Member

Posts: 1080




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« Reply #14 on: January 23, 2013, 09:46:07 AM »

Those who want full privileges in the lower cw segments should show competency in cw just like the test requires knowledge of TV and digital modes.  This is the essence of the Amateur Extra Class.

Not really.

Yes, the Extra gives another 25 kc. of CW/data space (not just cw space!) on 4 HF bands. But it also gives a lot more 'phone space, too! And access to more vanity call blocks. And more VE privileges.

FCC did what they did. Not gonna change any time soon.

73 de Jim, N2EY


The Extra did have phone privileges beyond that of Advanced,  but the Extra CW segments on 15, 20, 40 and 80m were places where there was a consistently clear difference in operator proficiency vs. the non-Extra CW segments.  When it comes to CW, by not requiring 20 wpm perfect copy, the level of required operator proficiency went from near professional to complete novice.   
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