Another Method for Teaching and Learning Morse Code

On the SolidCpyCW mailing list, Martin, OK1RR, mentioned W0UCE’s method for teaching CW. This is an interesting method for learning the code. Unfortunately, it requires a teacher. That is to say, someone can’t use this method on their own, as there’s no computer program to step the student through the program. A couple of notable points:

  1. Learning takes place at 28 wpm. This is the philosophy behind the G4FON program.
  2. Sending is an integral part of learning. I advocate sending as well as receiving when learning the code.
  3. No more than 30 minutes per day is devoted to learning the code. Too often, those learning the code spend too much time on it in the beginning and then “burn out.” Once they do this, they often abandon the code.

When asked, I normally point prospective CW operators to the G4FON program or hand them a copy of the K7QO Code Course on CD-ROM or both. One of these days, though, I’ll give a face-to-face class a go and use this teaching method. Maybe the more personal approach will help them get over the hump faster.


  1. It finally took a formal class to get a group of us over the top and actually on the air. While we all used online and computer aides, the class setting really brought it all together.

    • Dan KB6NU says:

      That’s great to hear, John. We’ll have to talk about this some time. Specifically, what was it about the face-to-face class setting that finally put you over the top?

  2. Elwood Downey says:

    Speaking of teaching success, I notice that the number of Techs continues to decline. See which is current as of stats available today. Note the striking discontinuity last July when the last Tech question pool was issued. Is this a coincidence, or is there a cause-effect, for example, are the current questions significantly more difficult?

  3. Ronny Risinger, KC5EES says:

    Thanks for posting the W0UCE method for learning CW. In teaching my students CW, I make them listen to Gordan West’s lessons (5 wpm copy) and then quiz them with words sent using MorseMaker software. I, too, made up lots of words using just the few letters learned progressively in each lesson. The list of words and order used in W0UCE list will expand my list.

    I will see if I can incorporate this into our CW learning. Each semester, I have about 20 kids in my Amateur Radio class. Of those, about 3 really pick it up and love it. Unfortunately, they then graduate and go off to college leaving CW behind due to lack of encouragement and equipment. I do hope that they pick it up again as they get older. One can hope.

    Ronny, KC5EES
    Austin, TX

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