Hunter Education

Hunter Education Course

The following are your options for obtaining a Virginia Hunter Education certificate:

Option 1: Virginia Hunter Education Course for All Ages “Self Study + Class

Notice: Virginia hunter education self study plus classroom course requires students to complete self-study material prior to class time. Some questions on the final test will be covered only in the self-study material. Choose a self-study option below:

find and register for a class near you

Option 2: “Full-Online” Courses for Residents 18 Years of Age and Older

Notice: On October 1, 2013, Virginia implemented a new "full-online" adult hunter education course. You must be a Virginia resident and 18 years of age or older to take this course.

These state-approved courses are commercially provided and are not administered by the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries:

Since Hunter Education became mandatory for 12–15 year old and first-time hunters in 1988, there has been a 25% reduction in the rate of hunting-related shooting incidents. While hunting is safe in comparison to other common sports, each injury can cause extreme physical and emotional pain for the victim, the shooter, and their families. Hunter Education courses are designed to teach hunting safety, principles of conservation, and sportsmanship. A dedicated cadre of nearly 1000 trained volunteer instructors works with 170 Conservation Police Officers to train over 14,000 students each year.

Hunter Education Volunteer Instructors

Hunter Education volunteers are committed to training the next generation to be safe, knowledgable and ethical participants in an enduring Virginia tradition. Many have had enjoyable hunting experiences and now say that they want to "give something back." If this describes you, please get in touch with us. It can be a very rewarding experience. There is a need for instructors, class organizers, and help with transporting materials. Since working with children and firearms is part of the program, all applicants must submit to a criminal background check.

Anyone who wishes to become involved can contact the Regional Hunter Education Coordinator at the nearest regional VDGIF office, or the State Coordinator at

Replacement Cards

Replacement cards for classroom courses and internet courses can be ordered by clicking this link (note, this will take you to who is managing hunting safety certificates for the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries). The cost for a replacement card is $10.