License Exam

Ready to get your Amateur Radio License?

Quarterly, on the 3rd Tuesday of the month, MCWA hosts a Volunteer Examiner (VE) testing session to obtain or upgrade your Amateur Radio license. The sessions are in the months of February, May, August, and November. The sessions are by appointment only and will begin at 7:00 PM Central time.

Please call or text Steve Maresso (KB9OLD) 847-477-3518 with questions and to confirm the session.


Free Methodist Church
934 N. Seminary
Woodstock, Il. 60098


      • Adults 18 and over: $15.00
      • Children under 18: $5.00

(Cash is preferred. Credit and Debit cards not accepted)

Important information

All amateur examination applicants are required to provide an FCC Registration Number (FRN) to the Volunteer Examiners (VEs) BEFORE taking an amateur exam. This is necessary due to changes the FCC has made to its licensing system.

Social security numbers are no longer accepted at exam sessions.

First-time exam applicants MUST obtain a FCC Registration Number before taking the exam. For more information, visit FCC Registration Number (FRN) 

A FCC instructional video provides step-by-step instructions on how to obtain an FRN through the FCC’s COmmission REgistration System (CORES).

Amateur candidates who already have a FCC license, whether for the amateur radio or other service, already have an FRN and can use the same number. All prospective new FCC licensees, however, will be required to obtain an FRN before the examination and provide that number to the volunteer examiners on the Form 605 license application. 

The FRN is required for all new applicants to take an amateur exam and is used afterward by the applicant to download the license document from the FCC Universal Licensing System (ULS), upgrade the license, apply for a vanity call sign, and to submit administrative updates (such as address and email changes) and renewal applications.

In addition, all applications must contain an email address for FCC correspondence. Applicants will receive an email direct from the FCC with a link to the official electronic copy of their license whenever a license is issued or changed. ARRL VEC suggests that those without access to email to use the email address of a family member or friend. Licensees will be able to log in to the ULS using their FRN and password to download the latest version of their license at any time. The FCC no longer provides paper license documents.

Applicants must bring all of the following to the examination session

      •  FCC Registration Number (FRN) 
      • A valid government issued photo ID (Passport, Driver’s License, or State ID) for identification
      •  $15 (18 or older) or $5 (Under  18) cash (test fee)
      • If upgrading your existing license, you must show your original license and provide a copy of the Amateur Radio license and/or Certificate of Successful Completion of Examination (CSCE)

If the initial test element is passed, you may continue to take the next test element(s) at no extra charge during the given session.

Retesting of a failed element during the same test session will require payment of an additional test fee.

FCC Application Fee Information

The FCC charges a fee to issue an initial license as well as for other FCC services.

The FCC $35 fee applies to new, renewal, rule waiver, and modification applications that request a new vanity call sign. The fee will be per application.

Administrative updates, such as a change of name, mailing or email address, and modification applications to upgrade an amateur radio licensee’s operator class or to request a sequentially issued call sign, are exempt from fees.

The $35 Amateur application fee is effective April 19, 2022.  Visit the ARRL FCC application fee page for further information.

License Fee for Young Applicants

Candidates younger than 18-years old will pay a reduced exam session fee of $5 to the ARRL VEC Volunteer Examiner team when taking an exam. Proper identification must be presented to and verified by the team, per the procedures for all exam candidates (what to bring to an exam session).  The $5 fee is for all candidates under the age of 18 regardless of the exam level taken.

Additionally, ARRL will cover the one-time $35 FCC application fee for new license candidates younger than 18-years old for tests administered under the ARRL VEC program. For more information and for the reimbursement instructions, visit the Youth Licensing Grant Program webpage.