Tennessee’s Hunter Education program works. Since 1975, when a formal hunter education program was introduced, the number of hunting and firearm related accidents in Tennessee has declined dramatically. We know that Tennessee’s Hunter Education program has reduced hunting accidents and saved lives.
What the Law Says About Hunter Education Requirements
Tennessee Code Annotated 70-2-108 became law in 1985 and states:
(a) Every person born on or after January 1, 1969, before hunting, shall possess, in addition to all other licenses and permits required, proof of satisfactory completion of an agency approved hunter education course…
If you were born on or after January 1, 1969 you must possess proof of successful completion of a hunter education class before hunting in Tennessee.
Those under 10 years of age do not need a Hunter Education certificate, but must be accompanied by an adult at least 21 years of age, who must remain in a position to take immediate control of the hunting device.
Who Is Eligible To Take A Hunter Education Class?
The course is offered free of charge (excluding the online course) to anyone interested regardless of age; however, you must be nine years of age or older in order to become a certified hunter education graduate.
Parents are encouraged to go through the course with their child. Parents who participate and who pass the test will receive hunter education certification. Many states require hunter education certification regardless of age. Parents that do not wish to become certified, typically find the class is both informative and enjoyable.
There are also three websites, unrelated directly to the TWRA, that may be used for the online course. The websites charge a fee for their services.
What To Expect From The Hunter Education Course
The basic Hunter Education Course provides firearms safety training and introduces students to their responsibilities in the fields of hunter ethics and wildlife management. The main objective of the Hunter Education Program is to reduce the potential for hunting accidents and ultimately reduce the number of hunting injuries. The course is taught according to standards established by the International Hunter Education Association. By meeting these standards the Tennessee Hunter Education program is recognized by all states, Canada, and Mexico.
The basic course is free of charge and consists of a minimum of ten (10) hours of classroom participation. Most classes generally last 12-16 hours. Students must successfully pass a written test consisting of 100 multiple choice questions. All students are required to participate in a live fire exercise. Students must attend all classes. Students need to bring their Social Security Number and a #2 pencil to the class.
An exemption for the Tennessee Hunter Education Online Field Day is available for anyone 21 years of age or older. To receive this exemption and a Tennessee Hunter Education card and certificate, you must follow these steps:
Step 1 - Complete one of the following online classes:
Both options are interactive, narrated, and offers daily (including weekend) live customer service via email or telephone with a toll-free number.
Step 2: Complete the form provided at this link: Hunter Education Field Day Exemption and mail, fax, or email with required documentation and payment (check, money order or credit card only) to the address listed on the form. Payment (check, money order or credit card) to the addresses listed on the form. After submission, you can expect to receive your card within 3 to 5 business days. Please do not attempt to purchase the permit from the TWRA's mobile app as we will not honor purchases from our app for this permit at this time.
- Hunter ethics
- Hunter responsibility toward wildlife, the environment, landowners and the general public
- Archery and the history of modern day bowhunting
- Tree stand safety
- History of firearms
- Blackpowder and muzzleloading firearms
- Knowledge of modern firearms and ammunition
- Proper gun handling and storage
- Marksmanship fundamentals
- Hunt preparation: specific laws and various equipment
- Principles of wildlife management and wildlife identification
- First aid
Need a Duplicate Card?
To replace a Hunter Education Card, first contact your TWRA Regional Office during normal business hours. Verify that your Hunter Education number has been updated in the TWRA license system. Then you may go to a TWRA license agent and purchase a Type 500 (Hunter Education Card Replacement), for $7.00. You may also purchase a replacement card online at the Online License Center.