GROL Testing


Joined Apr 26, 2005
You can take a sample Element 1 and Element 3 test at

The GROL test is made from those elements.

To gain more insight to the composition of the test, visit the about the tests page on that same site.

Element 1 is basic radio law and operations
Element 3 is basic electronics
The problem with preparing for the exam by taking dozens of random exams is that, the more answers you know, the more time you spend repeating things you've already learned. For example, once you've learned 80% of the answers, then obviously only 20% of the questions you see will be ones you haven't yet learned. So you spend an hour taking a 100-question random exam (for element 3), and you only see 20 questions you need to work on!

The solution is a website,, that tracks your progress. It repeats each question at lengthening intervals until you've answered it right several times in a row. It's great about making sure you learn everything, and it doesn't bore you to death repeating the easy stuff.

You register with your own username and password, so when you return at a later date, it remembers your study history. It seems to know how long you've been away, because when you come back after several days, it starts by repeating the questions you had missed in your last session. It's a terrific way to learn!



Joined May 26, 2009
For Amateur Radio, Element 3 concerns the "Amateur Extra" classl license. You answer a fifty question test. I would recommend that your read the "ARRL Extra Class License Manual." That's how I obtained my Extra class license.

There's a bunch of different commercial permits, licenses, certificates, and endorsements available from the FCC. There are eight commercial exam elements: 1, 3, 5, 6, 7, 7R, 8, and 9. All are online on the FccTestOnline website. One common combination is passing commercial elements 1 and 3 together to earn the General Radio Operator's License (GROL).

The amateur radio exams use a completely different set of elements: 2, 3, and 4. Element 3 is for the amateur radio General class license, and element 4 is for the Extra. I contend that the best way to prepare for the amateur radio exams is the HamTestOnline website. It has all the study materials available in the license manuals, and it also has interactive question drill to keep you awake and focused.

I got my first amateur Extra class license back in the 1970's using the license manual. Unfortunately, I let that one expire, so I had to start from scratch. I recent re-earned my Extra license using the HamTestOnline software. I definitely recommend the latter method. (Books tend to put me to sleep.)



Joined Nov 4, 2008
Having suffered sorely for eons under the iron heel of the FCC field office examiners (I once held every FCC license available, except for the 1st Class Radiotelegraph because I didn't get the sea time), I now derive a certain poetic justice in WRITING some of the new FCC questions. :)

The W5YI Group is coming out with a new GROL manual in November. It's been great working with legendary "professional ham" Gordon West and his group for the past several months on this upgrade.

In the meantime...STUDY ON! It only gets better! :D

I use
This website lets you select questions by topic or generate a random exam. The show answer option helps you learn the answers. You can also retake your missed questions at the end of the exam. It covers all the FCC elements 1,3,5,6,7,8,9. It's very easy to use.