FCC GMDSS – Radio Maintainer's License (DM) – Elements 1, 3, and 9 Online Exam

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The GMDSS - Radio Maintainer's License (DM) product includes access to one attempt for each of the following FCC Elements: (1) FCC Element 1, (1) FCC Element 3, and (1) FCC Element 9.

These online exams have a maximum testing time of two hours for each FCC Element.


The GMDSS - Radio Maintainer's License (DM) enables personnel to act as GMDSS radio maintainers and perform at sea repair and maintenance of GMDSS equipment. It also confers the operating authority of the PG and MP licenses. A DM is issued for the holder’s lifetime as of March 25, 2008. Those that acquired their licenses before that date must get a renewal.

Once you pass the required Element exam(s) for the FCC license that you are pursuing, Mariners Learning System will electronically file your license application with the FCC on your behalf. To do so, we require that you provide us via email:

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IMPORTANT NOTE: Upon successful approval of the applicant's license with the FCC, applicants will receive an email from the FCC. The applicant will have 10 days to pay the FCC an issuance fee ($35 for most applications) to finalize their license, per the instructions in the FCC’s email.

With your purchase, you get access to (1) FCC Element 1, (1) Element 3, and (1) Element 9 online exam for the FCC GMDSS Radio Maintainer’s License (DM). If you do not pass any mandatory FCC licensing exam, you will be required to re-purchase access to retest that FCC Element exam(s).

There are NO online course materials associated with this product.

You can also purchase the GMDSS Radio Maintainer’s – DM (Elements 1, 3, 9) Practice Test Book for an additional fee.

License Requirements

To qualify for an FCC GMDSS - Radio Maintainer's License (DM), you must:

  • Be a legal resident of (or otherwise eligible for employment in) the United States.

  • Be able to receive and transmit spoken messages in English.

  • Pass a written exam as described under the Testing tab.

Test Info

To obtain the FCC GMDSS Radio Maintainer’s License (DM), applicants must pass written Elements as illustrated in the following table:

test info table

Written Examination Elements For The FCC GMDSS Radio Maintainer’s License (DM)

Element 1

Basic radio law and operating practice with which every maritime radio operator should be familiar. To pass, an examinee must correctly answer at least 18 out of 24 questions.

Element 3

General Radiotelephone. Electronic fundamentals and techniques required to adjust, repair, and maintain radio transmitters and receivers. The exam consists of questions from the following categories: operating procedures, radio wave propagation, radio practice, electrical principles, circuit components, practical circuits, signals and emissions, and antennas and feedlines. To pass, an examinee must correctly answer at least 75 out of 100 questions.

Element 9

GMDSS Radio Maintenance Practices and Procedures. Requirements set forth in IMO Assembly on Training for Radio Personnel (GMDSS), Annex 5 and IMO Assembly on Radio Maintenance Guidelines for the Global Maritime Distress and Safety System related to Sea Areas A3 and A4. The exam consists of questions from the following categories: radio system theory, amplifiers, power sources, troubleshooting, digital theory, and GMDSS equipment and regulations. To pass, an examinee must correctly answer at least 38 out of 50 questions.

Note: You receive credit for each FCC Element Exam passed. For example - If you pass Element 1 and 3, but not Element 9, you need to retest only for Element 9.

Online Testing System Requirements

  • You must take the exam on a desktop computer or laptop (not a tablet ex: Chromebook)

  • You must have a working built-in or external webcam and microphone

  • Your Internet speed must be at least 2 Mbps download and 2 Mbps upload. Determine your Internet speed by running a test at: http://www.speedtest.net

Room/Space preparations:

  • The lighting in the room must be bright enough so that your face and eyes can be seen throughout the duration of the exam

  • Your desk/workspace must be completely cleared of all papers, books, and reference materials. In addition, please clear the entire room (including walls and bookshelves) of any materials that could be considered reference materials. Any suspect items seen during the initial room scan by your proctor will be flagged.

Ensure you adhere to the rules during your exam

  • You MUST provide your valid government issued photo ID when requested

  • You MUST remain directly in front of your webcam for the duration of the exam

  • You MUST NOT have anyone else in the room with you for the duration of your exam

  • You MUST NOT interact or communicate with anyone by any means while testing

  • You MUST NOT use any other electronic devices (phone, ipod, headphones, MP3 player, another computer, etc.) while taking the exam

  • Reference materials (papers, pens, books, study guides, e-mails, website, etc.) MUST NOT be used while testing

  • You MUST NOT use any mobile device or have any mobile device within your eyesight during the exam

  • You MUST NOT access other websites or applications on the computer while testing

  • You MUST NOT intentionally disable internet connection while testing

*Violation of any these rules will be flagged during your exam by the web proctor, and your exam WILL be marked as a FAIL, you will not be eligible for a refund and WILL be banned from re-taking the exam with Mariners Learning System.

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