Remote Testing in Canada
The Aurora Amateur Radio Group administers examinations for Canadian licenses in the amateur radio service. To qualify for a license examination in Canada, you must have a valid mailing address to receive a printed copy of your certificate from ISED. The Accredited Examiner will require documented proof of your mailing address, along with valid photo identification. To qualify for an in-person examination through our club, you must physically reside in Labrador or Nunavut. To learn more about remote examinations in Canada, please contact our Accredited Examiner, Brandin Hess (VA6ILS) who can be reached by one of the following methods:
Mobile Number: (506) 801-9730
We administer exams for the Advanced, Basic and Morse Code Qualifications as defined by Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada (a.k.a. ISED). Here are the various combinations of license Qualifications:
===> Basic Qualification (100 question exam) is earned when you score a passing mark of 70 per cent or higher.
===> The Basic Qualification itself only grants the license holder privileges above 50 MHz. To obtain HF privileges, the applicant must do one of three things:
==> Score a mark of 80 per cent or higher on the Basic Qualification exam, thus passing with Honours (a.k.a. Basic with Honours)
==> Obtain the Morse Code Qualification at 5 w.p.m. or
==> Obtain the Advanced Qualification (50 question exam) and reach a passing mark of 70 per cent or higher
To be eligible for a fully remote examination, applicants must meet the following requirements:
a.) You must be physically present in Canada to write the examination.
b.) A reliable internet connection, suitable to adequately run two video feeds and one audio feed.
c.) A web camera that allows us to view the Examinee's head, face, and shoulders clearly, to be seen at all times during the examination. This same computer must have a microphone that allows the Examiner to hear all sounds within the testing environment. We do not permit the use of a tablet, iPad or smartphone for viewing the examination. No exceptions. Below is an example of the view we need from the applicant's primary camera:
d.) Another computer with a web camera, a smart phone or tablet with a web camera. This secondary camera must be positioned in such a way to allow the Examiner to see the examinee's hands, workspace, work on scratch paper, and/or calculator, and the computer monitor that is being used to display the examination. Examinees are prohibited from using two cameras connected to the same desktop or laptop computer. The two camera feeds must be on separate devices. Below is an example of the view we need from the applicant's secondary camera:
e.) A current installation of Zoom. You do not need to have an account with Zoom for the exam. We will not accept other video conferencing applications. You can download Zoom for your specific operating system by clicking HERE. Page will open in a new tab. ZOOM MUST BE INSTALLED ON YOUR DEVICES PRIOR TO WRITING THE EXAM!
f.) A quiet room to complete the exam, free from distractions or interruptions. The Examinee MUST be the only person in the room during the exam. No one is permitted to enter the room while the examination is in progress.
WHAT TO EXPECT ON EXAM DAY
a.) We will send you an email at your assigned time that contains a link to join a Zoom conference. You will first join the conference with your primary camera. The primary camera would typically be your laptop or desktop computer.
b.) Once we have established audio and video communications with you, instructions will be given at that time for your second device to be connected to the Zoom conference. You will be asked to join with video only and refrain from using device audio.
c.) Once both cameras are connected, the Examiner will give you a warm welcome, perhaps chat some and then prepare the exam environment.
d.) You will be asked to swing your second camera around the entire room (360 degrees), must show the floor in the vicinity of the testing area, and must show the ceiling above the examination area.
e.) You will be asked to position the second device in a way that meets the requirements as listed above.
f.) You will be asked to present valid government issued photo identification.
g.) The Examiner will ask if you are wearing a smart watch or headphones. You may not wear a smart watch or headphones during the session.
h.) While not required, you will be asked about scratch paper. Scratch paper is certainly permitted during the exam, and you will be asked to show both sides of it on camera.
i.) You will be asked about using a calculator. If you are using a calculator, you must clear the memory and show the Examiner the keystrokes on camera. Scientific calculators are permitted during the exam, as long as their memory can be cleared to the satisfaction of the Examiner. Graphing calculators are not permitted. Examinees are not permitted to use the calculator on their computer. The Examiner must be satisfied this requirement has been met or the calculator may not be used.
j.) By this point, you will be close to starting your exam. The Examiner will read a few advisory statements prior to starting your exam. They are as follows:
The Examinee will be asked to ensure their smartphone or other devices capable of receiving notifications is placed on mute, or "do not disturb".
The examination cannot be voluntarily stopped and restarted.
No one is permitted to enter your room during the examination. This also includes peeking in, or partially opening a door. Should someone enter, or attempt to enter your room, we will immediately terminate and void your examination.
If you are found to be looking around at another part of your room and away from your immediate work space, we will promptly terminate the examination.
If our connection drops for any reason, you must stay seated until we are able to resolve the issue that has caused our disconnection. If we are unable to resolve the problem, we will need to reschedule the exam session.
k.) The Examiner will then do a screen share and display the first page of your examination. You will be asked to write the exam number on the answer sheet. You will be asked if there are any questions before the exam starts.
l.) After you have answered the last question, the Examiner will ask you if there are any questions you would like to review before terminating the exam. Once you decide the exam is complete, you will be asked to email a copy of the answer sheet to the Examiner.
m.) Once the Examiner receives your answer sheet, it will be marked for a final score. After the exam is graded, the applicant will be promptly notified of their mark. If it’s a passing mark, the Examiner will submit your results to ISED while you are still connected to the Zoom conference.
n.) After the Examiner submits the data to ISED, the applicant will receive an email containing a link to complete the setup of their account and pick a callsign. The Examiner will email a PDF copy of the results confirmation, where a long string of letters and numbers in the form of a Confirmation Code will be needed to complete account setup.
o.) If everything processes by this point, the applicant will receive their callsign within one business day. In some cases, it can happen in less than an hour.
COST TO WRITE YOUR EXAM
The cost for a remote examination session being sponsored through the Aurora Amateur Radio Group is currently $25.00 (Canadian currency).
APPLICATION PROCESS OVERVIEW
You will begin by completing our short form using the link below. Upon submitting the remote exam application, we will send you an invoice to pay for your examination. The fee is non-refundable and non-transferable. If you do not show up for your scheduled session and fail to communicate with us to reschedule, a new application and fee will need to be submitted! We accept all major credit/debit cards and PayPal.
Upon receiving your payment, we will add you to our exam roster for the day you requested. The Accredited Examiner will be in contact with you within 24 hours after your application is submitted to make sure any and all of your questions are answered. After we get you on our exam roster, a Google calendar invite will be sent via email with the date and time you selected to take your exam. You will receive an email within 24 hours (or earlier) prior to the exam session containing important information regarding the time you will be receiving a link to join us via Zoom. We will also contact you by telephone again on exam day to make sure your questions are answered and give a general overview of what to expect at the exam session.