Amateur Extra Class Ham License — On-Line Help for Your Self Study

Yes, it's "Amateur Extra," as you can see from my own license. But everyone just calls it "Extra."

Yes, it’s “Amateur Extra,” as you can see from my own license. But everyone just calls it “Extra.”

You may have been redirected here from You’re in the right place! Does this method of video-aided self study work? Click here to read a selection of the numerous comments I get.

Is it “Amateur Extra” or just “Extra?” Well, technically it’s “Amateur Extra,” but everyone just calls it “Extra.”

Studying for your Extra Class Ham Radio License

The Amateur Extra Class License is the top level of amateur radio licenses and conveys all amateur radio privileges. Watch the video below to learn how these videos work hand-in-hand with the manual. It tells you what self-study manual to buy and where to get it.

Guided Self Study

The manual is designed to support both self-study and classroom training, but sometimes neither works—self-study might be a little overwhelming, and sometimes an elmer (a mentor) is not available. That’s where this series of videos comes in—each provides an introduction to the material in the manual. Out here where I live in Southwestern Colorado, there aren’t very many people, let alone hams! That’s why I’ve created these videos. This divides the material into convenient chunks—short videos followed by short sections of self study. Enough – let’s watch this eight minute video!

The links I talked about

The 12th Edition of the ARRL Extra Class License Manual For Ham Radio is a mandatory adjunct to this course. In fact, just as with the Technician set of videos and the General set of videos, it is the course! Just to reiterate: you need the manual! These videos give you an overview of the sections you’ll be studying, along with a few videos of how things actually work. So here’s the paradigm: each video introduces a section of the text, which you then study. Try out the test questions, then come back for the next section’s video.

You can get the 12th Edition ARRL Extra Class License Manual by via Amazon by clicking on this link. It’s actually somewhat less expensive on Amazon than at the ARRL website, and Amazon’s shipping charges are less too, which will save you a few dollars. NOTE: You want the 12th Edition. Any earlier editions are great books, but will not fully prepare you for the current question set, valid July 1, 2020, to June 30, 2024.

There’s an Extra Class License Manual Support Page on the ARRL website that provides additional material to supplement the manual.

If you have a question about any section, simply post a comment under that particular video or directly on YouTube. Others may have the same question! I’ll post a reply to every question.

All the videos

All videos have been updated for the 12th Edition of the license manual.
NOTE: All of these videos are available on a single thumb drive. See here for details.

What do you do when you’re ready to take the test?

Go to, enter your zip code, and search for an examination session in your area. Good luck!

Yes I want your comments!

No instructional course is ever complete, nor is it perfect. Please comment! Please put the comments right on the same post as the video you’re commenting about. Or, you can comment on the video on YouTube. Don’t worry, I see them all!

Have fun!

There’s probably a ham radio club near you. Go to to locate a club near you. Attend their meetings and introduce yourself. You’ll find yourself instantly among friends. And your new friends can provide assistance as you study for your test. After you pass your test, they can help you get on the air, too. Enjoy!

84 Responses to Amateur Extra Class Ham License — On-Line Help for Your Self Study

  1. Ralph Anderson says:

    Comment or Question: I just put a bit in your jar, Dave.
    After holding an Advanced Class for almost 40 years (couldn’t quite make the 18wpm for Extra in those days), I upgraded to Extra in March.
    It would have been extremely difficult to prepare without your video series. I’d get up early each day with my coffee, computer, and ARRL guide and study, and after 2 months, felt confident and passed.
    Your work has done so much to advance the hobby!
    Thanks again and 73’s
    Ralph WA2QYA

  2. Dave says:

    Bob, the updated question pool is already online in various places, including here, so you can see what has changed. In the meantime, if you have the book that expires in 2016, that’s a great place to start studying. I understand there’s more emphasis on software defined radios and digital. Good luck with your studying! 73, Dave

  3. Dr. Bob Hill says:

    I earned by Technician license in 1994 while living in the Dallas, TX area. My eldest son, then about 20, got his Tech license along with me. Vocational responsibilities and a move to Mississippi disrupted my Ham experience; however, in March 2016, I passed the General Class test. I gave a 2 meter radio to my son and his children. They have several children. His older three sons have now passed their Tech tests, as well as my son’s wife. They are really excited – and so am I.
    I am currently wanting to study towards the Extra Class test, and I have found your video and personal style and interest very beneficial. I really enjoy your “Elmer” approach, as I have basically studied alone. For some reason, I have found it challenging to find a real “Elmer,” but I have tried to be one for my grand kids. Your video series is such a delight to use with them.
    I do have this question. The current Extra Test Question Pool expires at the end of June, 2016. I am thinking that I need to prepare for the new pool, which means the next edition of the ARRL Extra Manual which is not published yet. What do you recommend? Wait for the newer manual or will I be okay for the newer test by staying with the current manual along with your current Extra video series?
    I would appreciate your recommendation. And, again, thanks for doing such a great tutorial job and for your interest in helping others.
    Bob Hill, KC5IQZ

  4. Chris Gramlich says:


    Your thoughtful videos were essential for me passing the extra exam on Monday.

    Thank you very much.


  5. Thanks, Dave! I used all your videos to add to my study for Amateur Extra. The content you illustrated and added was excellent. I aced my exam this morning. I highly recommend using the videos. It takes self study up several notches.

  6. Allen says:

    Dave, Thanks for being such a great Elmer to so many of us. I’ve had my ticket a little over a year and upgraded to General 2/2015. Your videos were great for the explanation of the more difficult parts. Now working on my Extra with your help. Thanks again, you are a great Elmer and motivator.
    73- KM4GNY Allen

  7. Michael says:

    I wanted to thank you Dave for your videos and this website. Your presentation of the information made the concepts I was reading about easier to understand. I passed my Extra class just the other evening. Thank you!

  8. Tim K8HMK says:

    Thanks a bunch Dave. I have been watching your videos for a while now, took an extra class because self study was getting tiring. But you have been the majority source of information and ease of understanding from getting my Tech to now, my Extra for me! Not only for me but also for others I know in our clubs! I direct anyone I meet who is interested in amateur radio, or upgrading, to your videos. I do hope to meet you some day and say thank you in person!

    Until then, 73’s and a really BIG THANK YOU!


  9. Steve says:

    Correction to the URL for the Extra Class manual errata: […thanks! The page has been corrected. —Dave, 73

  10. Dave says:

    Art, congratulations on your upgrade! See you on the air! 73, Dave, KEØOG

  11. Art Womer says:

    Just want to say a big THANKS for the videos. Passed my extra tonight and the videos helped a great deal. I also used Gordon West’s CD’s which, combined helped a great deal.
    Again, THANKS!

    Art Womer

  12. Dave says:

    Charles, congratulations on your upgrade!

  13. Charles says:

    Passed my extra upgrade today! Your videos were very helpful.

  14. Dave says:

    Hi John, congratulations!

  15. Got my extra! Thank you Dave!

  16. Dave says:

    James, congratulations on your extra. I’m glad you find my videos helpful. 73, Dave, KEØOG

  17. Dave says:

    Tim, congratulations on your upgrade! I’m happy that you found my videos helpful.

  18. James Vanaman says:

    I just passed the Extra Class Exam in less than a month if study thanks, in large part, to your professionally crafted videos with eloquent explanations of what would normally be quite complex subject matter. Keep up the great work Dave!

  19. Tim says:

    Dave, another graduate! Passed my Extra Class test last week on 9/10. Thanks again for all the work on your video series….it makes the road much easier to travel. Took a bit longer than I hoped, but this isn’t a race.
    73’s Tim KC3AZH.

  20. John says:

    Dave, Just wanted to let you know I passed my Extra today! I could not have done it without watching your videos. You explained the concepts of the study material very well. Just wanted to say Thank You! John KF5SNL

  21. Chris Gramlich says:


    Thank you soo much for all this great work and knowledge that you are sharing. Your videos resonate with my brain. I listen and/watch your videos daily as an ongoing education program.

    Very Much appreciated


  22. Dave says:

    Jim, congratulations on your exam success! I’ll listen on Field Day. Our club callsign is KØIIT, and we operate 2A Colorado. 73, Dave

  23. Jim says:

    I just aced the General exam and eked out an Extra today! Your videos were extremely helpful – especially the one on complex reactance. I wanted to say thanks! and let you know you’re really making a difference with our ability to advance our skills and our understanding of the material. Keep up the good work, and hope to see you on Field Day in June. (Our club callsign is AB7HP.) 73 Jim KG7FVO

  24. Gerry KD8WBT says:

    I passed by Exam exam last Wednesday evening. Your videos were an invaluable tool in helping me prepare for this exam. Thank you for your dedication and support of amateur radio.

  25. Lesley says:

    I just got my Extra ticket today at the Orlando Hamcation today thanks to your videos. I don’t think I would have been able to get through the much harder subject matter on the Extra exam without your explanations. I only wish I had known about your site when I was studying for my previous exams. Thank you so much!

    73 from KM4BKO

  26. Bill Jones says:

    Thanks Dave!! I used the General Class Videos to help pass my general exam last Sept14. Now working on getting my extra hopefully in March. Taking a class at our Ham Club and using these videos and the online tests to help. I enjoy all of the videos and appreciate all the good info you put out! Thanks Again!!


  27. Sandro says:

    I love the videos and I think they help when I studied for my tech and general exams. I have been awaiting the extra class ones but have noticed you have slowed. I hope you haven’t given up on them, they are wonderfully done and really help make the book review I do make sense. Thanks for the wonderful videos you have made. [Hi Sandro! I’m trying to put up one extra class video per week. I still have several to go. The videos take several days to produce. -73, Dave]

  28. Fred says:

    Great job putting these videos together.
    Have viewed Technician thru Extra Section 7.3, Modulation Systems.
    Looking forward to the remaining topics.
    Thanks and 73,

  29. Dave says:

    Hi Dave, I’m glad you’re finding the videos helpful. 73!

  30. Dave says:

    Thanks for the videos Dave. I am about to start an Advanced Licence class here in England. I have used your General and Technician class videos as revision. I am using your Extra Class videos in preparation for my Advanced course and anticipate using them through my study.

    TNX and 73 de Dave 2E0ZDM.

  31. Tim says:

    Dave, Thank you for your dedication to helping others succeed. It is not common in today’s world. I used many of your videos this spring to help me pass my General test. I am now digging into your Extra Class videos along with the ARRL manual to pass that test. Keep up the great work, I know it’s not easy. Looking forward to the rest of the Extra Videos. 73’s, KC3AZH, Pgh PA.

  32. Alex says:

    Hi, Dave !!!

    Thanks a lot for AMAZING, BRILLIANT video-lessons.
    I hope one day to pass EXTRA CLASS licesnse exam
    (with your videos and Gordo’s book).
    Englsih is not my native language, so TANKS AGAIN for
    quality of sound and pronunciation !
    You can also make ESL videos !:)
    (English as a Second Language – lessons for foreigners in the USA)

  33. Andrew says:

    I passed my Extra today. Thanks for these videos. I look forward to the future sections. You give great insight to the knowledge that I just can’t get out of the book.

  34. Dave says:

    Nima, I’m still in the process of making these videos. I’m uploading them as I make them. Videos 6.1 and 6.2 are already uploaded, and 6.3 is next in line.

  35. Nima says:

    Dear Dave
    My eyes on ways for Section 6.1, Amplifiers, Section 6.2, Signal Processing, …, 11.2 RF Exposure and Final Preparation to Take Your Examination Videos!
    When will you upload them?

  36. John W says:

    Hey Dave!

    Thank you so much for all the great help. I stumbled across your site about a month and a half ago, and after having my Tech for 4 years and never going any further, it inspired me to go further. I watched all your General videos, passed my General last week, and now am going through the Extra videos. They are really great, especially as I am a visual person. Thank you for all the devotion you’ve put in to these, and I hope to catch you on the air!

  37. Dave says:

    Allen, I’m sorry you’re having issues. I successfully watched the videos on YouTube on my iPhone 5S, my old version 1 iPad, and on my wife’s new Apple all-in-one, all using Safari. All are wifi connected. Both the iPhone and the all-in-one have the latest iOS. I’m no expert on things Apple, as my wife would be the first to tell you, given I was raised on PCs. I wish I could replicate your issue. The Analytics on YouTube show that audience retention for the first Extra video is about normal, so other people are apparently seeing it okay. I wish I could help more.

  38. Allen Watson says:

    Yes I have tried Chrome and Safari. This issue is on a New iPad Air. I watch 10-15 Youtube Videos a day and never have had a problem. Only two time I have seen that error is on your new Extra videos.

    Just FYI.. I get a list of recommended videos from YouTube and yours was the only one that did not work. I would send you an image of the error but I don’t see a way to embed an image.


  39. Dave says:

    Hi Allen, sorry to hear about the errors. Have you tried using a different browser? Another option is to clear the browser cache, and if that still doesn’t work, clear the Java cache via the Control Panel Java entry. I use Chrome and have not been having problems. 73, Dave

  40. Allen Watson says:

    I subscribe to your youtube channel. Your last two videos create an error when I click on it. The error is “an error occurred during validation.” You last two amateur radio extra classes have had this error. I know I can get the videos from your site but I thought I would let you know about is issue.

    Thanks for the classes, I am a visual person so the videos you put out really help. Thanks

    I am just getting into HF so I have a lot to learn. I would really like to see an in depth course on RTTY/PSK, include proper procedures and common used Q codes. I just bought an Icom Ic-7800 so I have a lot to learn just to operate the radio.

    Allen N7LVS

  41. Alan says:

    Thanks for taking the time to do this. I got my tech and general license by taking practice tests over and over until I knew the material, along the way I would find things I didn’t understand and take the time to figure them out. When I started looking over the questions for extra, I realized there was a lot I didn’t know and I wanted to know why the answer is what it is. I look forward to taking the time to go through your videos and learn what I need to know before taking the extra exam.

    Alan KJ4HMO

  42. James Bryan says:

    I agree with Adam !! I am going this weekend for first exam, intend to get T and G and come back here for the E 🙂


  43. Scott says:

    Dave, my email did arrive. I apologize for causing anxiety. Thanks again for your excellent videos. Looking forward to the next exciting installment on Amateur Extra! Scott

  44. Dave says:

    Joe, Regarding the Amateur Extra videos, I’m just getting started! I’m uploading 2.2 as we speak. It takes about a week/video just given the production time. From the time I start to write the script until the video is on YouTube is about three days, minimum. Three long days! 73, Dave

  45. Dave says:

    Joe, thanks for the kind words. I’m glad you found the videos to be helpful. 73, Dave

  46. Dave says:

    Scott, I’m not sure what’s wrong with the subscription service; it seems to be working properly. After you put your email into the box, the system should send you an email with a confirmation link to click on. Note; if you want to subscribe on YouTube, just go to any of my videos and click on subscribe.

  47. joe butler says:

    Hey Dave, I’m having trouble finding the videos for the extra class license. any suggestions ?

    thanks, Joe Butler kc4arl

  48. Scott says:

    Dave, thanks for your videos. They have helped me greatly for both the Tech and Genl license exams. I am now checking every several days for exciting new Amateur Extra Class episodes. Request: I have submitted my email address in the subscription window twice now with no results. Please put me on your subscription list for future Extra videos. Thx! Scott KK4ZJH

  49. Adam says:

    Love the work you have done. Your General material helped me upgrade and I’m hoping to use your Extra for as well. Please keep them coming.

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