ARRL Entry Level License Committee Report July 2017

Discussion in 'Ham Radio Discussions' started by NN4RH, Aug 2, 2017.

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  1. AC0GT

    AC0GT Ham Member QRZ Page

    Which is the same thing said by every generation about the next generation since Adam and Eve.

    <SIGH>
     
    N4AAB likes this.
  2. KK5JY

    KK5JY Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    I guess that depends on what proportion of people are sitting on Novice tickets, and why. If it's 1% of the ham population, then it's not significant. There are always underachievers in every realm of human endeavor. If half the hams are sitting on Novice tickets for 20y, that's another matter entirely, and that might support your assertion.

    Sitting on an Advanced ticket is very different. I did that for a long time, because I had no use for the little slivers of voice and CW bands that came with the Extra. Once I started contesting, that was when I found a use for the Extra class license, so I went and got it. But an Advanced ticket has a lot of spectrum access, as does the General.

    As politely as I can say this, the comparison isn't valid, in nearly any respect -- and frankly, you need to pick a different kind of example.

    And more importantly, you didn't address the issue you quoted. FCC has decided what they want, and why they want it, nobody is coming up with new arguments as to why they should change. Regardless of how "right" or "correct" or "timely" any of the current arguments might appear, they have already been rejected on principle by the regulators whose opinion is the only one that matters.
     
  3. WD4IGX

    WD4IGX Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    I can see how a non-pilot would think that, but it's not entirely correct.

    When you start taking lessons you're a student pilot of course. You get a medical certificate and a student pilot certificate. They used to be one piece of paper but are now separate. The student pilot certificate (technically and legally NO pilots are "licensed" - it's a "certificate" - there are rather pedantic legal differences) has no exam or anything at that point.

    But at some point your instructor signs you off to fly solo - without him or anyone else in the plane - on that student certificate. He signs that back of it and endorses your logbook and those together become your certificate, aka "license" in this context", to fly by yourself under certain restrictions, very much like an old Novice ticket in a way. Legally, you must stay within 25 nautical miles of your home airport, you cannot carry passengers, you can only takeoff and land at airports your instructor approves, and in weather he approves. Mine, for example, initially had a restriction of a maximum crosswind component of 5 knots, later removed as I got better at crosswind landings. During your training you will also fly "cross country" which non-pilots often mistake for meaning "across the country" rather than "across some country" - i.e. going somewhere. For counting toward requirements purposes that means you have to land more than 50 nautical miles from where you took off. You will plan those flights, review your planning with your instructor, and he will sign them off with an endorsement authorizing you to complete them alone. So you are "licensed" - you have a document issued by the government, authorized by a trainer acting, by virtue of holding a Certified Flight Instructor rating also issued by the government, as an agent of the government, allowing you to fly as specified.

    It's very much like tiered licensing in driving.
     
    N0TZU likes this.
  4. AC0GT

    AC0GT Ham Member QRZ Page

    Maybe this ARRL survey and discussions like this might still be productive. Sometimes even getting the "wrong" answers can lead to the "right" solutions.

    I remember reading an article long ago about a survey Apple sent out about their then new Mac OS. A common complaint was that it took too long for Mac OS to boot up. What did Apple do? They fixed a bunch of bugs in the next version, which happened to make the computers take even longer to boot up. What it did though was make the computer crash less often so the perception of the computer taking a long time to boot up was gone.

    Are the amateur radio tests too easy? I don't know, but the perception of being too easy is there. How can we fix this? I propose amateurs having to take some of the same testing as the commercial radio operators. I've been reading my old GROL study guide and I see a lot of easy questions, a lot that would not apply to amateur radio, but also a lot that a good amateur radio operator should know. This should remove the perception of the ARRL making the tests so easy so they can grab more membership fees from licensed hams. No doubt the ARRL would find a way to work itself into the process of developing the exams if this was part of amateur testing but the fact that the professional operators also having input on the the same test pool would keep the ARRL from having such a large influence.

    Having commercial and amateur license testing sharing a pool of questions would also help in opening up some off air communications between the two groups. The two seem to live in completely different worlds, perhaps we could learn something about each other and FROM each other if we were both, quite literally, reading from the same manual. So far I've read only the first, and shortest, question pool a GROL would have to pass. I'll keep reading as time allows.

    This discussion and a one I had with my brother in law (he's studying to be a pilot, BTW) made me look for my old GROL study guide. He had some questions on radios for business and aircraft use. I don't know if the answers we seek is in the GROL but it can't hurt to look through it. It will at least satisfy some of my curiosity, and I may even learn something useful.
     
  5. W8IXI

    W8IXI Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    For sure. The current and future amateur tests are irrelevant unless we current amateurs learn how to attract and retain new members.

    If they cannot "boot up" quickly they are doomed, and so are we.

    73, Mike
     
  6. W0AAT

    W0AAT XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    Cut the Extra class freqs back 50khz(that area is dead air on 75m many nights!) and give them to general class and above to offset giving tech class only 50khz in the very top edge of the band. Give them data privileges in the top 10khz of their current CW freqs. This way they are not in the data passbands we currently use.

    It is time to face facts and we need to interest kids and they use computers for everything. So we have to tie computer use to the radio and maybe draw in some new blood who doesn't get discouraged by hearing the same group of old farts discussing their medical issues on the repeater every day, or plain get ignored by the repeater users who are not welcoming to new callsigns(I tried to dig up a contact on a repeater in a town 90 miles away to get some directions, Google maps was as lost as I was. Repeater had been in use by 10 people 2 minutes before. I waited for them to get done and made a call.... SILENCE. I finally stopped at a gas station where a cop was sitting and asked him for directions. Google maps was only off by 2 miles...
     
  7. AC0GT

    AC0GT Ham Member QRZ Page

    I went to here: http://www.ah0a.org/FCC/Licenses.html to get the numbers of Advanced and Novice licenses then and now. Turns out that of the deprecated license classes 35% of them still exist. Enough time has passed that all of them had to renew once, and quite a few twice. If someone spent the time to find renewals of the General and Technician license classes, filter out those that "aged out" as opposed to merely left willingly, and I suspect we'd see a failure to upgrade real close to half.

    This data was always there for those that wanted to look for it. What we see is a section of the licensed amateur highlighted with the deprecated license classes to make this failure quite undeniable. Your personal experience of having "no use" and "a lot of spectrum" shows further evidence that the incentive was insufficient.

    I did answer. I said with time passing the problems with incentive licensing is now more apparent. This new evidence on the same old question does mean the answer could, and likely should, change.
     
  8. K7JEM

    K7JEM Ham Member QRZ Page

    The question pool is maintained by the NCVEC QPC, not the ARRL. If changes need to be made in the questions, they can be done by this committee. If the questions seem too easy, outdated, or just plain wrong, you can contact them to offer your input. We don't need to inject commercial questions into the pool, serves no purpose.

    The QPC is made up of hams from the different VEC's in the country. When they develop a new pool every few years, they put it out ahead of time so that the ham community can review the content and see if there are any errors that slipped through. It's not easy to make up an acceptable question for the pool. It has to meet certain conditions; it has to be relevant, of the proper form, about the right difficulty, and the distractor questions have to be viable options. And the question can't be a "trick" question, and have only one correct answer.

    So, you can pore over the questions in the GROL, but unless they have relevance to ham radio, they are not going to be used.
     
  9. WA3QGD

    WA3QGD Ham Member QRZ Page

    after your training and certification,one becomes an AIRMAN, training allows one to log PIC time and type to acheive ones rating,The Arrl is a microburst downdraft of fiduciary foolishness
     
  10. KK5JY

    KK5JY Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    1.3% of hams are Novices. Statistically, that's insignificant. You can't make a policy statement (or decision) on the benign inaction of 1.3% of any population.
    Not at all. I got the license that allowed me to do what I wanted to do, and that's fine. Pilots do this all the time. I have a private pilot's license, but no multi-engine or commercial ratings? Is pilot certification a failure because I don't have a multi-engine rating? Of course not. I got the license that allowed me to do what I wanted to do, and I'm done. Advanced and General licensees may all be using HF digimodes, which take place in the General band segments. That in no way indicates failure.

    You're making something out of nothing. And in the end, it doesn't matter, because you offer no new arguments to change the well-designed decision of FCC on this matter. It's over. Move on.
     
    WD4IGX likes this.

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