Amateur Radio (Ham radio) in the UK is controlled by the UK Government through Ofcom. If you want to become an Amateur and gain a UK
Amateur callsign you need to sit an amateur exam. The exams are set at three levels : Foundation, Intermediate and Advanced.
You would start off by passing the Foundation level exam which is the entrance level. It is not possible to skip a level and go for a higher level.
This requirement is laid down by Ofcom and is out of our control.
The exam papers come from the national body, the Radio Society of Great Britain who handle exams on behalf of Ofcom. Riviera Amateur Radio Club can provide training for the Foundation and Intermediate licence exams.
The exams also have practical elements which must be completed prior to sitting the exam. These are assessed by our RSGB registered assessors. The Club also has two RSGB-registered Exam Centres.
Please note that training is run by volunteers and as such times & dates need to fit in with those involved.
Training Courses & Exam Dates
|Level||Start Date||Course Fee||Day / Time||Assessor||Exam Date||Questions||Duration||Exam Fee||Total cost|
|Foundation||TBA||TBA||Evenings||Reg’d assessors||TBA||26||55 mins||£27.50||–|
|Intermediate||TBA||TBA||Evenings||Reg’d assessors||TBA||45||75 mins||£32.50||–|
|Advanced||N/A||N/A||Evenings||No practicals||TBA||62||120 mins||£37.50||–|
Evening training sessions.
We usually run training as a number of evening sessions on club nights at the club venue. Assessments and Exams are again taken on an evening session.
At this time, RARC makes no fee for providing training to full club members. All they pay is the RSGB exam fees (which are out of our control and subject to change) and a share of the venue hire fee for training evenings and the evening of the exam.
The club has limited resources, training & exams are run by volunteers. We can provide training, assessments & exams for non members but they will have to be charged an administration fee of £20 on top of the RSGB exam fees. Regrettably this is non negotiable.
Weekend training sessions
A weekend course & exam requires at least two trainers, two invigilators, an assessor and the exam secretary. Because of the amount of work involved and the hire costs for a suitable venue for the whole weekend we usually run one weekend Foundation course per year.
Weekend courses would only be considered if we had enough candidates to make it viable. This would likely be 5 or more candidates.
Please make sure that you have read and understood the Foundation NOW handbook before the weekend as many people who approach the course without having done so often find the material difficult and statistically speaking do not fare as well at the exam.
Due to excessive room hire fees, weekend courses are currently suspended until we can find a venue at a reasonable cost.
It is possible to train yourself by following the Foundation Licence NOW manual but we would only recommend this to people with some form of relevant background experience. You should double check your level of Maths ability if you intend to go it alone.
You will need to get your practical assessments signed off by an RSGB registered assessor. You can not take the exam without a properly signed off practical assessment record sheet.
For this please contact either the RSGB South West Regional Manager (Pam Helliwell) or the Riviera club at rivieraarc DOT gmail DOT com to find out where the closest assessor is.
Pass or Fail ?
After you have sat the exam, the invigilators will check your paper on the night and tell you your mark (Foundation and Intermediate only). This is only an indicative mark which has to be confirmed when the papers get marked at RSGB headquarters.
If you have passed then you will receive your pass certificate in the post a little while afterwards. RSGB take a minimum of 10 working days to process exam papers starting from the date they receive them.
Once you have your certificate you can apply for your callsign on the Ofcom website. We will tell you more about how to do this later.
Intermediate Licence training
We can provide Intermediate training for club members on a number of evenings on club nights. Regrettably it is unlikely that we could provide weekend courses for the Intermediate due to the amount & complexity of material involved in the course.
We simply do not have the resources to do so.
We are evaluating the use of an online virtual training environment (Edmodo) to make handouts, videos and quizzes available to supplement classroom sessions. Your instructor will give you an access code when you join your course.
You will need a scientific calculator for use in the Intermediate training. We recommend the Casio FX-83 or FX 85. Your instructor will demonstrate how to use it during the training. Please direct any enquiries about Intermediate courses to rivieraARC@gmail.com
It is unlikely that there will be any new Intermediate courses now before early 2018 due to club committments with other events.
Advanced Licence training
At the current time, we are not running formal training for the Advanced courses but we do recommend the Advanced Distance Learning course for the Advanced exam run by Steve Hartley G0FUW and the Bath & District Amateur Radio Club. His email is G0FUW@tiscali.co.uk.
We can administer the Advanced exams in Torquay, they are now bookable on one months notice, this is an RSGB requirement not ours.
For more information or to register your interest in a course, please email the club.
Please note you cannot skip a level and go straight into a higher level exam without having first passing the lower level(s). This is a requirement from Ofcom and therefore we cannot do anything about this.
RSGB Resources – You can download the syllabus from the RSGB and/or buy the course books from the RSGB shop. The course books are also available elsewhere but please make sure to get the most up to date version. You will need a copy of the relevant book.
Your trainer may have copies of the relevant book and/or calculator for sale at the start of your course.
Riviera ARC has adopted the RSGB Child Protection Guidelines in regard to Safeguarding Children and Vulnerable Adults.
Exams can be held at our exam centre at the Precinct Centre, St Marychurch which is RSGB-registered.
Exams passed with Riviera ARC
The following have gained their amateur radio licence with Riviera ARC