About the Study Guide

You are looking at the Washington Handgun Education Study Guide. At the present time, you cannot obtain handgun education certification from Handgun Safety Course. However, you can use this Study Guide as a resource to learn more about handgun safety.

Handgun self control

Self-Control and Target Identification

Some shooters may become overly anxious or excited, which can lead to careless behavior. They may fire at sounds, colors, movements, or unidentified shapes, or simply shoot too quickly. In the excitement after hitting their target, they may swing a loaded firearm toward their companions or run with the safety off toward the target.

Self-control is an essential aspect of safety. Only shoot when you know that no people, domestic animals, buildings, or equipment are in the zone-of-fire.

Slow, careful shooting is not only safer, but it also produces a higher degree of success.


Shooting accurately is a key safety factor. Some incidents, often deadly ones, have occurred when stray bullets have hit people out of the shooter's sight. Be sure you have a proper backstop before you shoot.