Everything you need to know about becoming a driving instructor

Starting a new career, or changing your existing career path, can be daunting. But it could also be the best step that you ever take. If you’re wanting to try a completely new line of work, then you might want to consider becoming a driving instructor. This role will suit you if you love driving, are people-orientated, and are craving a job that provides you with some independence.

Like most new career ventures, becoming a driving instructor will require you to pursue some training and gain a new qualification. So, this article will point you in the right direction, telling you all you need to know to get started on your journey towards becoming a driving instructor.

Apply and register with the DVSA

Becoming a driving instructor is exciting, but before you get stuck in with the fun, practical training, you’ll need to register with the Driving and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA). In order to do this, you’ll need to be at least 21 years old, have held your driving license for at least three years and have no motoring convictions.

You’ll also have to get a Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check before you apply, even if you already hold one. If you’re unsure of whether you’re eligible to become a driving instructor, you can check on the DVSA website.

Find training

Just like you did when you were first learning to drive, you’ll want to find a reputable trainer or establishment to train for your driving instructor qualification. You can be rest assured that you’re fully prepared to take the various tests required to obtain the qualification, if you seek high quality training.

You could train to become a driving instructor with Bill Plant Driving School, for example, guided by an experienced trainer, who will provide you with the education and confidence needed to pass.

The theory test

To become a driving instructor, you’ll have to take a theory test, just like you did when you were first learning to drive. This exam is broken up into two sections, the first consisting of a multiple-choice exam, which will see you answer 100 questions on traffic signs, the Highway Code, theoretical driving skills and on the content found in the Driving Instructor’s Handbook and information pack. You’ll need to score at least 80% to pass, so you’ll want to make sure to revise and use the resources that your trainer recommends to help you.

It probably comes as no surprise that the second section of the exam is the hazard perception test. Just like in your first theory exam, you’ll have to watch video clips and click on the screen when you identify a hazard. You’ll need 76% to pass, so make sure to practice online and on handy apps that are available, to give yourself the best chance.

The practical test

Of course, in order to become a driving instructor, you’ll have to be an exemplary driver. You’ll have to demonstrate this in the practical section of the test, where you’ll go through a thorough assessment of your driving skills. You’ll need to use a car that meets the DVSA standards and has all of the instalments required.

The test will see you go on an independent drive and you’ll also have to demonstrate numerous manoeuvres. In order to pass the practical assessment, you’ll have to have received six faults or less and have no major faults. If you fail, you’ll have to pay to retake the test, so make sure you’re fully confident and prepared to take the exam before you book it!

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