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Hunter Education

Nebraska’s hunter education program helps develop safe, ethical and responsible hunters.


Hunters ages 12 through 29 must have proof on their person of the completion of:

  • Firearm Hunter Education while hunting any game with a firearm or air gun.
  • Bowhunter Education while hunting deer, antelope, elk or bighorn sheep with a bow or crossbow.

Proof of completion may be in the form of a valid Nebraska hunting permit or durable hard card containing the hunters’ Firearm or Bowhunter education number, or a hunter education or bowhunter education card or certificate issued by a recognized state or recognized country. Display on a mobile phone is allowed.

Hunters of any age, whether required to or not, are welcome and encouraged to take a hunter education course to become familiar with the principles of hunter safety.

Nebraska has minimum hunting age and accompaniment requirements. Learn more about them on our hunt permit and stamps requirements page.


Nebraska offers classroom, hybrid and online firearm and bowhunter education courses, with age requirements. Learn more about the course options by student age below.

In-person classroom courses

Approved for ages 11+

Classroom courses are a minimum of 8 hours and provide instruction on safe firearm and/or archery equipment use, shooting and sighting techniques, hunter ethics, game identification, and conservation management. Instruction is followed by a multiple choice and true/false test. A score of 85% is needed to earn a certificate. Classroom courses are offered statewide, free of charge. Note: The combination hunter/bowhunter education classroom course is 12-hours of instruction minimum.

Students attending a classroom course must attend all scheduled class dates to earn certification. Instructors are not required to offer make-up days for missed classes.

Hybrid courses

Approved for ages 11+

Hybrid courses are a combination of an approved online course followed by an in-person Hunt Safe Session. Students cannot attend an in-person Hunt Safe Session until they successfully complete an approved online course.

Step 1 – Complete an approved online course. The online courses are designed to be completed in 6-8 hours and allow students to work at their own pace. The two approved online courses below cost $29.50 and $30, respectively.

Step 2 – Attend a Hunt Safe Session. The Hunt Safe Session is a 2-hour in-person review that emphasizes equipment safety for both firearms and archery, tree stand safety and shoot/don’t shoot scenarios. Hunt Safe Sessions are offered statewide, free of charge. Online registration is required.

Students must show the instructor their certificate of completion proving they completed an approved online course at the beginning of a Hunt Safe Session. Proof can be an electronic or paper copy of the certificate of completion.

Online courses

Approved for ages 16+

Online courses are designed to be completed in 6-8 hours and allow students to work at their own pace. The two approved online courses, below, cost $29.50 and $30, respectively.

Students age 16-29 who complete an approved online course earn certification entirely online. Students age 16-29 may attend a Hunt Safe Session if they would like in-person instruction, but this is not a requirement for certification.

Can’t find a class near you?

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Apprentice Hunter Education Exemption Certificate

Anyone age 12 through 29 who has not completed firearm or bowhunter education may purchase a $5 Apprentice Hunter Education Exemption Certificate that temporarily exempts them from hunter and bowhunter education requirements.

Hunters using the certificate must be accompanied by a person 19 years or older who has a valid Nebraska hunting permit. If the accompanying hunter is between the ages of 19 and 29 years old, they must have completed hunter or bowhunter education. The accompanying hunter may not accompany more than two people using the certificate.

  • The certificate is valid through Dec. 31 of the year purchased.
  • The certificate can only be renewed once in the year immediately following purchase.
  • Certificates may be purchased on the permit website under the “Stamps, Apprentice Certificates, Etc.” category.


Those with a developmental disability may apply for exemption from hunter education requirements. A person who has a developmental disability must complete an application and have it signed by a physician. Applications must be sent to the Commission and approved before the hunter education exemption is issued.

A boy in hunter orange holds his rifle.


You’ve completed your Hunter Education Course, but can’t find your Hunter Education Certificate. You’re curious whether your Iowa Hunter Education Certificate is valid in Nebraska. Find answers to those questions and more on our Hunter Education FAQs page.

A boy shoots arrows at targets from an elevated archery tower at a state park.

Outdoor skills events & workshops

Once you’ve completed hunter education, you can take your skillsets to the next level by attending outdoor skills events and workshops.

Mom teaching son about firearm

Volunteer instructor resources

Forms, links and other resources for certified volunteer hunter and bowhunter education instructors.

Get started hunting

Now that you’ve taken Hunter Education, explore these other resources to get you ready for your first hunt.

Learn to Hunt

Learn to Hunt

Whether you’re learning to hunt or want to share your skills, the resources below can help.

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Learn to Shoot

Learn to Shoot

Learn how you can participate in shooting sports in Nebraska.

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Mentored Hunts

Mentored Hunts

Learning from an experienced hunter is one of the most effective and enjoyable ways to learn.

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Nebraska is one of the best places in the country to hunt and explore because of its diverse game.

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Hunting permits

Purchase hunting, big game and turkey permits, as well as supertags and combo lotteries.

Season dates

With a broad diversity of species and seasons, hunters in Nebraska can have a busy year. Find our comprehensive list of season dates by species.