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Young hunter with pheasant A hunter education course must be completed if a person has never had a hunting license or has no record of a previous license or hunter education.

The NJ Hunter Education program prepares students to recognize, understand, and accept the serious responsibilities of hunting. Having safe and ethical hunters in the field is fundamental to the sport. To accomplish this, the NJ program has two components: a home-study portion and the field session/written exam.

Home study allows students to learn the "classroom" material at their own pace and then attend a one-day field session. The one-day field session consists of students working with instructors to complete an extensive field walk, mandatory live-fire session and concludes with a mandatory written exam.

Hunters who wish to use a rifle/muzzleloader who did not previously complete the Rifle Hunter Education Course (discontinued) must now complete the Firearms Course to obtain a Rifle Permit. Trapping classes, when scheduled, are posted on the Trapping Information page.

THERE IS NO CHARGE FOR THE COURSE OR STATE PROVIDED MATERIALS.

Field sessions and exams are offered at locations throughout New Jersey March through November.

HOW TO COMPLETE THE NJ HUNTER EDUCATION PROGRAM

There are three options available for completing the home study portion of the course:

Home Study Component
Complete Only ONE Option
YouTube screenshot

  • Watch the video chapters on YouTube

  • Read the Study Guide online

  • Print out and complete required portions of the workbook (pdf, 93kb)
  • Workbook and DVD

  • Pick up DVD and Study Guide/Workbook from a participating store for FREE

  • Complete required portions of workbook
  • HunterEd.com logo

  • Complete this interactive web-based program at HunterCourse.com

  • Pay $25 and print certificate
  • After completing ONE of these three options see the schedule (March-November) and register for a Hunter Education field session/exam. Register for Firearms, Archery or both. Be sure to use the studentís CID number.

    NOTE: Registration needs to be completed from a laptop or desktop computer. One cannot register from a mobile device.

    Field session/exam locations and directions

    Attending a Field Session
    All Students Need to Bring:
    • Completed workbook OR HunterCourse.com certificate - REQUIRED TO PASS COURSE!

    • Hunter Education Student Agreement Form (pdf, 105kb)

    • Number 2 pencils

    • Positive attitude

    • Appropriate clothing be outside for at least two hours, rain or shine. Not all teaching locations are heated.
    Archery Students Need to Bring:

  • Studentís own bow (Crossbow students must be able to draw their own crossbow manually or with a cocking device.)
        Is My Bow Ready for Hunter Education?

  • 5 matched arrows

  • Ability to shoot 3 out of 5 arrows into a vital zone of a 3-D deer target at 15-20 yards
  • Firearm Students Need to Bring

  • Cased shotgun (Division will provide one if needed/preferred)

  • Eye and ear protection

    NOTE: Division will supply all ammunition

  • What to know for the Hunter Education Field Day
    Firearms Course FAQs
    Practice Exams

    RELATED INFORMATION

    State Hunter Training Areas

    To use any state Hunter Training Area (practice range) at least one person in a group is required to have a valid hunting license. Anyone under 13 must be under direct adult supervision.

    These ranges are provided by the NJ Division of Fish and Wildlife's Hunter Education Program through federal funding from the US Fish and Wildlife Service's Federal Aid in Wildlife Restoration Program (http://wsfrprograms.fws.gov). The federal funds are derived from an excise tax collected on guns, ammunition and archery equipment.

    After the Course

    Upon completion of a hunter education field session and passing the written exam (and bow proficiency test if applicable) registered students are issued their course completion card. When the card is presented to a license agent those 10 to 15 years of age are issued a free Youth License. (NOTE: Youths ages 10 to 13 must be accompanied by a properly licensed adult 21 years of age or older while hunting.) Those age 16 and older are eligible to purchase the license(s) for which they have proof of their course completion.

    Youth Hunting Opportunities

    The NJ Division of Fish and Wildlifeís popular Take a Kid Hunting Program is designed to provide a quality hunting experience for properly licensed youth hunters. See the Take a Kid Hunting Program page for details.

    Duplicate Hunter Education Cards

    If you completed a hunter education course and need a duplicate card see the Duplicate Hunter Education Card page.

    Becoming a Hunter Education Instructor

    New Jersey's Hunter Education Program relies on the dedication of trained volunteer instructors. If interested complete and fax (908-735-5689) or mail (NJ DFW - Hunter Education, 26 Rt. 173W, Hampton, NJ 08827) the application form (pdf, 90kb).

    General Information

    Hunter education courses are offered FREE by the New Jersey Division of Fish and Wildlife. The training, classroom and range rental fees, books, equipment and ammunition are funded through the Federal Aid to Wildlife Restoration Act, commonly called the Pittman-Robertson Act. This law imposes an excise tax, paid by the manufacturer, on all sporting arms, ammunition, archery equipment and hand-guns. The funds are distributed to the states by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

    Anyone seeking accommodations for a physical or learning disability, or a foreign language interpreter, should contact the Hunter Education Office at 856-629-0552 or toll-free at 877-2-HUNT-NJ, or via e-mail at njhuntered@dep.nj.gov.

    Equal opportunity to participate in and benefit from hunter education training programs is available to all individuals without regard to their race, color, national origin, sex, age, or handicap. Complaints of discrimination should be sent to the Office of Equal Opportunity, U.S. Department of Interior, Office of the Secretary, Washington, DC 20240.

    The Division is extremely proud that its Hunter Education program is continually recognized as one of the top programs in the country. The future of hunting in New Jersey remains rooted in hunter education.

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    Last Updated: April 7, 2016