View Poll Results: Are proctorless Internet-based written tests to get a hunter ed card a good change?

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  • Yes, Internet-based written tests are just fine

    26 38.81%
  • No, this is not OK. Tests taken over the Internet can be faked.

    36 53.73%
  • Other: explanation for why to be posted here

    5 7.46%
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Thread: Hunter Ed written tests - should F&G change to allow non-proctored tests?

  1. #1
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    Question Hunter Ed written tests - should F&G change to allow non-proctored tests?

    Today there is no way to get a hunter ed card without sitting in a proctored test, monitored by trained F&G personnel. Is this a useless formality that should be done away with, and should we now allow supervision-free test taking over the Internet to substitute for this?

  2. #2
    Member tboehm's Avatar
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    Default For Alaska

    I would have to say that there are plenty of schools over the net and they have plenty of testing that is allowed by the national board of education. I think that with the added remote areas that it should be put into effect for the residents of alaska. I'll bet that this is a fight that could be won if someone was incline to tackle it.

  3. #3
    Member 6XLeech's Avatar
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    Default Question...

    Quote Originally Posted by FamilyMan View Post
    Today there is no way to get a hunter ed card without sitting in a proctored test, monitored by trained F&G personnel. Is this a useless formality that should be done away with, and should we now allow supervision-free test taking over the Internet to substitute for this?
    What's the issue as you see it, FamilyMan? Is it having to travel to a test site (difficult for bush/remote dwellers)? Or having to take a proctored test?

    What part is it that seems "useless"?

    Thanks for posting this.

  4. #4
    Member Smokey's Avatar
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    Default Testing

    I sponsored a local warden and provided a facitlity at a clubhouse I own some years back and had about 75 attendee's to get their Hunter Safety training.
    I took the course to see what it was about, and to cover my rear in case I ever needed to have the card. What I found was a bit interesting.
    I took way to much for granted that people ( especially adults ) knew how to safely handle firearms. We had many adults attend that were totally clueless when it came to many issues - it was a real eye opener for me.
    So, with that being said, I think the hunting community that grows up around firearms may have to suffer a bit and attend such classes simply because we have a lot of others that would like to join our ranks and were not privilidged to have the exposure many of us were so fortunate enough to have.
    I can see the remote challenges but I guess isn't just about everything one does a challenge when living the remote life????

  5. #5

    Default

    I agree with Smokey. When I took the class I was amazed to see the lack of general knowledge (and common sense) from the vast majority of the class. Even the instructors were horrible. One of them drew back a bow with a field tipped arrow in the class room pointing it at a closed door. I let him know that if it went off, and somebody was on the other side of the door, he could easily injure or kill that person because the arrow will go through. They also used red dot laser wooden guns for practice and the instructors had the red dot on the students quite often. I laid into him when we were outside learning how to get in and out of a sedan with a rifle, and he threw a candy wrapper and cigarette butt on the ground. My wife remembers how much I was fuming after the class.

    My point is that I hope instructors are screened to teach these classes. I didn't take mine in Alaska, and I have more faith in our Fish and Game then in Nevada, but I honestly think I came out of my hunter safety class dumber than when I went in.

  6. #6
    Member Smokey's Avatar
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    Default Jerod

    It was funny how many seasoned hunters brought up "dumb" questions as well.
    There are new things to deal with as well that todays hunters need to be aware of. Here is a prime example. I have seen maybe 4 or 5 gun barrels blown apart now at the ends on sporting clays courses. First reaction is gun or ammo malfuntion - sorry - try choke tubes! With the invent of screw in chokes we have made it a habit to carry them in our pockets - hunters too, and anything, ear plugs, coins, nuts, you name it can stick in these and its way to easy to grab and screw in and shoot!
    These are things I think a TRAINED live instructor needs to cover. This is stuff many readers may gloss over in a written test and later cause serious harm to them or someone else over. One test in a lifetime is not a big loss for sure. They do need to offer more test sites and opportunities.
    Being older does not mean we are smarter - or at least smart enuff for sure - things change....

  7. #7

    Default

    Filling in a bubble on a test next to; always keep your firearm pointed in a safe direction; is a lot different that being instructed on how to properly handle a firearm.

    Yes you can learn English, math and other subjects over the internet. Would I want my son to learn how to handle a firearm safely over the net? Hell no!

    A few years back when I was finishing college I re took hunter ed to boost my GPA and I was shocked at how many adults where clueless about guns, and more than once pointed a firearm at someone in the class. By requiring a proctor taken test we are making sure that these people get some kind of instruction before running out into the woods with a gun. Not everyone has had parents teach them about guns.

    Just my 2 cents.

  8. #8
    Member Formerly Montana Bob's Avatar
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    Default

    I took my first Hunter Safety Course back in 73. Having cabin fever this Winter I decided to take the Basic Hunter Safety and Bow hunter courses online as a refresher.
    A couple of weeks ago I went in to my Basic Field day and found the course way to easy for the written and to me seemed too basic.
    Maybe because I had taken it before or it was just common sense issues, I don't know.
    I'll see what happens this weekend for the Bow Hunting Field day
    Fish IT! Hunt IT! or *#%@ IT!

  9. #9
    Member GAredneck's Avatar
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    Default No it's not

    It's not useless. Last winter my son was about to hit the age of 10 and would be able to get his own tags and no longer have to hunt on mine provided he passed the Hunter Ed class. He and my wife took the Hunters Ed together. I picked up the books that had to be completed prior to the class start date and they begain right away. I challenge any of you that has young ones that you think don't need this to go get the books and test them yourself, you'll be surprised. The class not only teaches gun handling but it touches on all aspects of the outdoors from field first aid to boating safety. No matter how well you teach your young ones, sometimes they don't listen and they need to hear it from another adult to make it sink in and then they realize that Dad isn't full of B.S and just pulling his/her chain.
    In the end they both passed the "usless" test and have gained much needed knowledge for the just incase situation that will eventually come hunting here in Alaska, and if it's with me I'll feel confident they'll make the right decision.

    So if this question is just becasue of inconvienance, I say this, it's worth it.

  10. #10
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    Default Today's F&G Hunter Ed tests to get your card

    Quote Originally Posted by 6XLeech View Post
    What's the issue as you see it, FamilyMan? Is it having to travel to a test site (difficult for bush/remote dwellers)? Or having to take a proctored test?

    Thanks for posting this.
    F&G do have trained personal that they fly to remote areas to do this in person, and this person does do the field work with every student showing proper hands on training and testing actual shooting proficiency (4/5 in a 4 inch group at 25 yds). None of that is the issue.

    The question is: DURING that in person time should the student take the 100 question test supervised by that F&G person and have to 80% correct to pass as is present, or should that class skip that 40 minute part of the in person class and merely rely on the results of the test that they might have taken over the Internet?

  11. #11
    Member AKDoug's Avatar
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    Default

    I'm going to tackle this question as a newly certified Bowhunter Ed instructor for Alaska. This is my opinion only, not the State's.

    Regardless if you take the internet test you are still required to physically attend a class in Alaska. This class is shorter than the standard hunter ed course. What it allows the instructors to do is spend MORE time on safety, especially Alaskan related safety and gun handling skills. The computer test elimates the time (a couple hours at the end of the class) that it takes for the instructors to administer the test, grade it and deal with other paper work. The computerized basic hunter safety program is still in it's infancy, but the archery side has been working really well. The written tests for the hunter ed classes are so easy that I can't really see a wave of cheating. Those same guys that cheat are going to be the same guys out there that pass a standard test..but still have no ethics. How many guys are actually going to cheat on the test, pay $15 to take it on the net, then show up for the one day class afterwards?


    I would encourage anyone who wants to know about the process to pick up the phone and call the folks in charge of hunter safety at ADF&G. It doesn't do any of us any good to go off with knee jerk reactions about this process. BTW..there is nothing stopping anyone from taking the full class as they will still be offered. And if you are dead set that they should only be teaching the full classes...volunteer to help out There's an instructor's class March 26th and 27th.
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  12. #12
    Member AKHunterNP's Avatar
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    Default

    I decided to take the full archery course, not just the online test and field day qualifier. I'm glad I did, not that I learned any more or any less but it was a good way to meet other hunters. One thing I will say though is that the instructors need to be sure of regs before they attempt to quote them in the class. Even as an instructor there is nothing wrong with saying "I'm not sure, I will find out and get back with you" instead of putting out bad info. I took mine a few years ago and what I am referring to was a question about lighted knocks. The instructor gave the wrong answer to the persons question about if they were legal or not, which they are. Other than this I thought it was a great class and great experience.
    "...arms like laws discourage and keep the invader and plunderer in awe...Horrid mischief would ensue were the good deprived of the use of them." -Thomas Paine

  13. #13
    Moderator LuJon's Avatar
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    Default

    I like the mandatory class but I don't see any reason why the test needs to be administered and proctored there. I like the way the archery program is run where you have the option to take the test online but still have to complete the field day. In the long run it will reduce the drain on instructor time and make it easier for people to attend the course.

  14. #14
    Member 6XLeech's Avatar
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    Default Sounds like a pretest...

    Quote Originally Posted by FamilyMan View Post
    F&G do have trained personal that they fly to remote areas to do this in person, and this person does do the field work with every student showing proper hands on training and testing actual shooting proficiency (4/5 in a 4 inch group at 25 yds). None of that is the issue.

    The question is: DURING that in person time should the student take the 100 question test supervised by that F&G person and have to 80% correct to pass as is present, or should that class skip that 40 minute part of the in person class and merely rely on the results of the test that they might have taken over the Internet?
    Not that either way is right or wrong, but for the sake of discussion... If the goal is effective learning, I think a pretest followed by a proctored test is most effective. Prob you could argue both sides of this one - but I tend to pay more attention in that (pretest, test) format - and (looking at ADF&G's side) not everyone takes the class very seriously as it is. My buddy (who took the class in FBX a couple weeks before I did) described a couple of guys who showed up with quite an attitude, ultimately were asked to leave. I'll argue that a proctored test contributes to a more credible, and effective course.

    Why it might matter: I'm a total hunting newbie, still finding my way around the basics (got my first Leupold facial stamp couple days ago: "Dad, you're bleeding" ), but I found the course excellent as taught for me. My family thought so too - esp for safety, conservation, regs, ethics - a good balance of practical and big-picture. I think the course content is relevant, to the individuals taking the course, and to hunters collectively. As I read more about hunting values/ethics...and the laws, one of the most significant points to me in the course was the influence of hunter actions or attitudes on the public's perception of hunting. It's not hard to imagine educated hunters are in the best long-term interests of hunting generally. So, I'll argue, though I lack any real experience, that the course is effective as taught and that the proctored test encourages our attention in a way that's important for course success.

    Good thread.

  15. #15
    Moderator Daveinthebush's Avatar
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    Default Pretty simple

    My doctor passed all of his medical tests on line. He is responsible for the lives of others. So I think if he can do it, why not.

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  16. #16

    Default

    I'm a little confused on this one. Is the concern over someone "cheating" in some form with a non-proctored test or is it the time that it takes to take the test the issue?

    If the in-class time is the same either way, I would say take the test at the time of the class (after instruction). If they are going to extend the in-class time to continue further instruction/discussion through the time that they would otherwise be using for the exam, maybe having the online exam is a reasonable method.

    I am hearing a couple different things. I agree that the in-class time is very important. You not only get the standard information, but you get a chance to actually talk to people, both the instructor and the other students, and to listen to others questions. This really helps people to understand not only the rules, but the "why" behind the rules. Most of the hunter-ed stuff is very basic common sense to MOST of us, much of it to the point of "why do they even need to say this?" Hearing the explaination behind some of this and hearing others who may question it can help to learn that which really helps in your own interpretation of issues in the future.

    If the in-class time is the same whether you are taking the test after or not, then there is nothing lost by using the proctored test method. If the in-class time is extended to fill the time previously taken by the taking of the test, then I could see benefit to the online system. Essentially, if it is something where an 8-hour class is required and you either have 7 hours of insutrction and 1 hour for the test versus 8 hours of instruction and take the test later, then I would lean more toward the latter.

  17. #17

    Default In some cases, YES

    I think you should be able to do it online if you meet the born before date that most states drop the requirement on, because I don't think I need to take a test written for a 12 year old. My daughter passed it when she was 9.
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  18. #18
    Moderator Daveinthebush's Avatar
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    Default What?

    Quote Originally Posted by profishguide View Post
    I think you should be able to do it online if you meet the born before date that most states drop the requirement on, because I don't think I need to take a test written for a 12 year old. My daughter passed it when she was 9.
    If you were born before the required date and don't have to take the test, why would you want to take it online?

    Vietnam - June 70 - Feb. 72
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  19. #19
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    Default Same Results for on-line students

    I have taught a lot of these classes and the on-line students that I have given the test to all passed easily. The change (no proctored exam for on-line students) happens next month and will eliminate some of the paper work for the instructors. The on-line students still have show they can safely handle the guns, complete the shooting test, and the field portion of the class. IMO every new hunter should take the full day class. The written exam is not difficult and my son passed at age 10 but we spent a lot of time filling out his work book and discussing the questions that came up.

    For bowhunters the most important part of the class is the shooting test. If you have practiced it is an easy test. If you can't place one out of two arrows you shoot in the vitals of each of the four targets and two out of two arrows in one of the four targets then you shouldn't be allowed to hunt with a bow. Try it at home. You should be able to place 5 out of 8 arrows in the vitals of a 3-D target at distances out to 30 yards.

  20. #20
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    Thumbs up study and practice

    Quote Originally Posted by AKHUNTINFOOL View Post
    The written exam is not difficult and my son passed at age 10 but we spent a lot of time filling out his work book and discussing the questions that came up.

    For bowhunters the most important part of the class is the shooting test. If you have practiced it is an easy test.
    The common theme here as I read it, is that if you study, practice, and learn, then the hunter ed course is a piece of cake to pass.

    This is as it should be, in my opinion.

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