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The Foundation Course

From Spring 2016, the courses run over three Sundays, typically starting at 10:00 and ending at 16:00 From 2016 we will run three Foundation courses each year – January and April and a ‘fast track’ Foundation and Intermediate in October

Foundation Topics included in each course are

  • Technical Basics
  • Licence Regulations
  • Operating
  • Transmitters & Receivers
  • Antennas & Feeders
  • EMC (Electro-Magnetic Compatibility ie interference issues)
  • Propagation

One of the sessions are reserved for practical exercises which MUST be completed before the exam.
The practical exercises include

  • Connecting up the four major items of an amateur station
  • Making an HF contact
  • Making a VHF contact
  • Adjusting a VHF antenna
  • Sending & Receiving a short message in Morse Code

You do not need to know the Morse code (we give you a code sheet) and the messages (less than 30 characters) are sent VERY slowly. The only “skills” you need are normal hearing and the ability to count to five. No one ever fails the Morse assessment !

Course notes will be provided each week and you will have ample opportunity to try some practice questions culminating in a mock exam during the sixth session.

The exam consists of 26 multiple choice questions ie each question is followed by four answers, you have to select the correct answer. The pass mark is 19. You are allowed 55 minutes to complete the paper but most people do it in half the time. You will be given four documents to help you answer some of the questions:

1.  A full list of the frequencies which Foundation licensees are allowed to use
2.  Two band plans (14 MHz & 144 MHz)
3.  A VHF frequency allocation table
4.  A wavelength to frequency conversion chart

Your answer paper is sent off to RSGB HQ in Bedford and they will issue an official pass or fail notice. However, we are allowed to compare your answers with the correct list and give you an indication as to whether or not you have passed.

If you have passed, you can apply to Ofcom for a licence and callsign. If you do this by post, you will charged a fee (currently £20) but if you apply on-line, it is free!

More details from .