REMINDER: Check now to make sure you have your firearms safety certificate. If you’ve misplaced it, see the “General information” below for instructions on obtaining a duplicate.
ALERT: The DNR has modified firearms safety certification requirements on an interim basis as a result of COVID-19. Both in-person classroom training and in-person field days are postponed until further notice. Students of all ages may take their classroom training online. Students age 14 and older may also complete a virtual field day instead of the traditional in-person field day by signing up for and completing the online hunter safety course. Students ages 12 and 13 who want to hunt this fall but are unable to complete their in-person field day are encouraged to use the apprentice hunter validation.
- Youth ages 11 and older can attend a firearms safety certification course and receive their certificate. The Firearms Safety Certificate becomes valid at age 12.
- DNR Firearms Certification is required of anyone born after December 31, 1979 to purchase a hunting license in Minnesota. Check requirements in other states.
- Apprentice hunter validation.
Four basic rules of firearms handling
- Treat each firearm as if it is loaded
- Always control the muzzle of your firearm
- Be sure of your target and what is beyond
- Keep your finger off the trigger and outside the trigger guard until ready to shoot.
When and where are firearms safety classes offered?
Classes are added to the DNR website as the information becomes available. Check back often.
- Spring classes - February - June
- Fall classes - July - October
- Check the currently scheduled classes
What happens in the classes?
- The firearms safety class consists of a minimum of 12 hours of classroom learning on the safe handling of firearms, hunter responsibility and wildlife conservation. Students then complete additional field experience.
- The field experience consists of seven required scenario-based training opportunities. These scenarios allow students to learn and demonstrate commonly accepted principles of safety in hunting and the handling of firearms. It includes shooting a .22 caliber rifle on a range.
A fee of up to $7.50 may be collected by the instructor at the class for any costs they incur to conduct the class. The DNR course fee is $7.50, payable on-line after successful completion of course requirements.
Youth ages 11 – 17: Youth can complete the 12-hour online course at HunterCourse.com. Until further notice, youths ages 14 to 17 may attend a virtual field day to complete their certification. Youths ages 12 and 13 still must complete an in-person field day to obtain their certification.
Field days fill up quickly! Register your child for a field day now while they complete their online course.
- Purchase a duplicate firearms safety certificate online or wherever hunting and fishing licenses are sold.
- For more information or assistance with purchasing a duplicate safety certificate:
- Completed training in 2011 or since: call 800-366-8917 (M-F, 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m.)
- Completed training before 2011: Contact the DNR Information Center
- For more information about the program, call toll free 800-366-8917
- To have your firearms safety certification added to your Minnesota Driver’s License, bring your firearms certificate to the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) when you renew your driver’s license and request them to check the box to add it as an endorsement.
Find (and sort) more courses on the DNR Safety Training Calendar!
To view detailed information about a class or field day, click on its title.Scroll table right to see more »
There are organizations that include the DNR Firearms Safety Training class as part of an event or membership package they offer. The fee for the DNR firearms safety training is set at $7.50, with an option for the instructor group to charge an additional $7.50. However, these other programs have additional costs which are set by the providing organization.