Basic Hunter Education courses

Basic Hunter Education is mandatory for all first time hunters.

Attention: You may already qualify to hunt in Massachusetts. Find out more.

By state law, all first-time hunters (18 years of age or older) must successfully complete a Basic Hunter Education course before they may purchase a Massachusetts hunting or sporting license. Government issued “certificates of completion” from any jurisdiction are accepted.

Minors, 12 to 17 years of age, have separate rules to follow (learn more). While minors are not mandated to complete Basic Hunter Education to hunt, it is one option for minors (15-17 years of age) to purchase hunting license and it is a prerequisite for all minors (12-17 years of age) to participate in some youth programs such as the youth turkey hunt program and the young adult pheasant hunt program.

All courses are FREE of charge and open to the public.

Basic Hunter Education course listing

To enroll, call (508) 389-7820
 M-F, 8 a.m.–4 p.m.

Facility & Address Dates & Times Status
MassWildlife Field Headquarters
1 Rabbit Hill Road
Handicapped accessible

Driving directions 

2-day hybrid course
Thu, July 21: 6 PM–9 PM  (Virtual via Zoom)
Sat, July 30: 8 AM–2 PM (Field Day)

Joining both dates and completion of online study guide required.

Enrollment is closed
Worthington Rod & Gun Club
458 Dingle Road
Driving directions

4-day traditional course
Mon, July 25: 5:30 PM–9 PM
Tue, July 26: 5:30 PM–9 PM
Thu, July 28: 5:30 PM–9 PM
Fri, July 29: 5:30 PM–9 PM

In-person attendance at all dates required.

To enroll call
(508) 389-7820
Press zero to reach an attendant
Mahar Regional School
507 S Main Street
Handicapped accessible
Driving directions

2-day independent study course
Tue, July 26: 6 p.m.–9:30 p.m.
Sat, August 13: 9 a.m.–3 p.m. (Field Day)

In-person attendance at both dates and completion of online study guide required

Enrollment is closed


In response to demand, MassWildlife will be adding more hunter education courses throughout the summer.

If you don’t find a class that suites your needs, please check back soon as more classes and locations will be added over the next several weeks.

Tips for finding a course

  1. Bookmark this page and check back on a regular basis. This list is routinely updated as courses open for enrollment across the state.
  2. Sign up to be notified of Basic Hunter Education courses offered near your town/city when they open for enrollment.
  3. Consider completing Basic Hunter Education through a different state. Government-issued certificates from any jurisdiction (i.e. any state) will qualify you to purchase your first-ever hunting license in Massachusetts.
    • Completing an out-of-state course is only recommended if you already have a firearms license or do not wish to obtain a firearms license. A Basic Hunter Education certificate issued by another state will not be accepted by a Massachusetts police department to apply for a firearms license.

Firearms licensing

Individuals who only wish to apply for a firearms license should take a firearms safety course. Certified firearms safety courses are the ideal course for non-hunters and individuals who want only to obtain a Massachusetts firearms license [i.e. Firearms Identification Card (FID) or License to Carry (LTC)]. Contact your local police department to learn what conditions must be met before a firearms license is issued.

Additional Resources for