Theory Test For Driving Instructor

Theory Test For Driving Instructor: A Step-By-Step Guide

We'll go over everything you need to know about becoming an approved driving instructor (ADI), including the theory test for driving instructor, driving ability test, and some frequently asked questions.

December 23, 2021

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When you initially begin your job as a driving instructor, it can be intimidating. Although there is a lot of jargon and abbreviations, prospective student instructors should not be concerned. With our step-by-step tutorial, we’ll strive to cut through the clutter and make the procedure as straightforward as possible.

If you’ve ever contemplated becoming a driving instructor, you won’t be surprised to find that we strongly encourage you to do so. It’s an excellent employment choice for those who enjoy being self-sufficient and relish a challenge. Most importantly, you’ll be teaching a highly valuable skill, and it’s a wonderful feeling to assist students in passing their exams.

Whereas, to be a driving instructor, you need to have solid and extensive knowledge. You could refer to our free  Theory Test Practice to strengthen your knowledge and skills for your future job.

We’ll go over everything you need to know about becoming an approved driving instructor (ADI), including the theory test for driving instructors, the driving ability test, and some frequently asked questions.

Theory Test For Driving Instructor

How to become a driving instructor

Apply to become a driving instructor

You must first register with the Driving and Vehicle Standards Agency before you can begin your training to become a driving instructor (DVSA). To do so, you must be at least 21 years old and have had your driver’s licence for at least three years, with no motoring convictions. To begin your application, you must obtain a fresh Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check, even if you already have one.

To work as a driving instructor, you must first pass a criminal background check

If you’re trying to become an approved driving instructor (ADI) for the first time, get a criminal background check. You can’t utilize one you already have; you’ll have to obtain a new one.

You’ll need to use the following before you begin:

  • Organization PIN 105205
  • Secret word axis
  • Organisation name DVSA – PDI (PO)

Proving your identity

After you’ve completed the online application, you’ll need to provide identification evidence. This can be done at a Post Office that provides a ‘CRB and ID verification service.’ Take a printed document from your online application with barcodes on it, as well as three original pieces of identification (not copies). These include:

  • Your passport
  • Your driving license
  • A current utility bill (less than three months)
  • A bank statement from the previous three months is required.

The service will set you back £8.22.

Become a driving instructor by filling out an application

If you want to become an authorized driving instructor (ADI), you should do the following:

  • Submitting the first application
  • After failing the qualifying tests, reapplying
  • Reapplying after previously working as an ADI

Get a trainer

Officially, no training is required before taking the ADI tests to become a driving instructor, although like with all specialty jobs, most people would struggle to pass the tests without specialized training.

BSM’s cutting-edge, industry-leading driving instructor training provides a focused approach to help you become a licensed ADI quickly and affordably. The course will teach you about some of the practical aspects of being a driving instructor, such as managing your diary and retaining your students, in addition to preparing you for the test. Other driving instructor training courses are, of course, available.

Take the theory test (ADI part 1)

Booking your test

When your application to begin the ADI qualifying procedure has been approved, you can schedule your part 1 test. It’s the first of three tests you must pass to become an ADI. It’s a test of knowledge. You book them and take them all at once. To pass the test, you must pass both parts.

  • Change or double-check your test information. After you’ve scheduled your test, you can adjust the date. This includes if you are unable or unwilling to attend due to the coronavirus (COVID-19). If you’ve misplaced your booking confirmation, you can look up your appointment information online.
  • Reschedule your exam. If you failed your ADI part 1 test and want to retake it, reschedule it. You must schedule your next test at least three working days following your last one.

You can try to visit our blog to get more about the How To Book Theory Test?

Revision and practice

To prepare for the theory test, you can use books and software. 

Questions with multiple answers. The questions on the theory test are based on:

  • The Highway Code
  • Know your traffic signs
  • Driving – the essential skills
  • The official theory test kit for licensed driving instructors from the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) e-Learning the Driving Instructor’s Handbook.

Learn the rules and skills you’ll be tested on by studying these. They’re available online and at most high-street bookstores.

Hazard perception test. You’ll see 14 video clips of regular road sights as well as ‘growing hazards.’ For recognizing each developing hazard as soon as it begins to happen, click the mouse to earn up to 5 points. To pass the test, you must achieve a minimum score of 76 percent.

Maybe you need Top 5 Effective Hazard Perception Test Tips

What to bring to your exam

For your exam, you must bring your UK photocard driver’s license. If you hold a Northern Ireland driver’s license, bring the photocard as well as the paper counterpart.

Multiple-choice questions

Answer 100 multiple-choice questions in 1 hour and 30 minutes. You’ll receive the following information before the test begins:

  • Instructions on how to conduct the exam
  • The opportunity to do some practice questions to familiarize yourself with the screens

Hazard perception test

A video explaining how the hazard perception test works will be given to you before you begin. After that, you’ll see 14 video clips. The clips are as follows:

  • Include common road scenes
  • Contain at least one ‘developing hazard,’ but one of the clips has two.

You earn points for identifying developing hazards as soon as they appear.

Pass mark and test result

After you’ve completed the test, you’ll receive your results at the testing center. You must pass both sections of the test to pass it. You must get both to pass the multiple-choice section:

  • at least 85 out of 100 
  • In each of the four categories of questions, at least 20 out of 25

If you achieve an overall score of 85 or above but not enough points in each of the four categories, you’ll fail. To pass the hazard perception section, you must get at least 57 out of 75 points.

You can get more with our blog: Pass Mark For Theory Test

Theory Test For Driving Instructor

Take the driving ability test (ADI part 2)

Booking your test

When you’ve passed your approved driving instructor (ADI) part 1 test, you can schedule your ADI part 2 test. It’s the second of three tests you must pass to become an ADI. It’s a road test to see how good of a driver you are. You must be able to do the following in order to pass the test:

  • In a variety of road and traffic conditions, drive safely
  • By driving in a certain way, you can demonstrate that you are familiar with the Highway Code.

The national standard for driving cars outlines everything you’ll need to know in order to pass the exam. If you need assistance preparing for the test, you can get driving teacher training. Take your test only when you are confident in your ability to complete all of the tasks without assistance.

What to take to your test

You must bring the following items:

  • Your driving license from the United Kingdom
  • Part 1 pass certificate from an approved driving instructor (ADI)
  • A face mask, unless it is unsafe for you to do so
  • An appropriate vehicle

Rules for the car you use

When you take a test, your vehicle must be able to:

  • Be subjected to taxes
  • Be covered for a road test (check with your insurance company)
  • It must be roadworthy and have a current MOT (if it is older than three years)
  • You cannot use a convertible unless it is a saloon, hatchback, or estate vehicle in good working condition
  • There are no warning lights on, such as the airbag warning light
  • You cannot have a space-saving spare tire fitted unless there is no tire damage and each tire has the legal tread depth
  • Be smoke-free – you can’t smoke in it right before or during the test
  • Have an mph speedometer and be able to reach at least 62mph
  • Having a maximum authorized mass (MAM) of no more than 3,500 kg and four wheels

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What happens during the test

Part 2 of the authorized driving instructor (ADI) test consists of five parts:

  • A vision test: For vehicles with a new-style number plate, the distance is 26.5 meters.  For vehicles with an old-style number plate, the distance is 27.5 meters.
  • Show me, tell me’ vehicle safety questions: The ‘show me, tell me’ questions consist of five vehicle safety questions. These tests will determine whether or not you are capable of performing basic safety rules.
  • Ability to drive in general: You’ll be driving in a variety of road and traffic conditions, including on highways and dual carriageways whenever possible.
  • Maneuvers: The examiner will have you perform two of the following exercises: parallel park on the side of the road, reverse into a parking bay and drive out, reverse into a parking bay and drive out, pull up on the right-hand side of the road, reverse for about two car lengths, and rejoin traffic.
  • Independent driving: You’ll need to drive for roughly 20 minutes, following either sat nav directions or traffic signs. The examiner will instruct you on which task you must do.

Faults and test results

Faults. There are three different types of mistakes you can make:

  • A dangerous fault is one that puts you, the examiner, the public, or your property in danger
  • A serious mistake – anything that could be dangerous
  • A driving mistake – this isn’t dangerous, but if you keep making the same mistake, it could become dangerous.

Pass mark. If you make the following mistakes on your approved driving instructor (ADI) part 2 test, you’ll pass. 

  • There should be no more than six driving mistakes
  • There are no major or dangerous issues.

Get practice teaching

After passing the approved driving instructor (ADI) part 2 test, you can apply for a trainee driving instructor license. A trainee license:

  • Enables you to gain experience teaching pupils to drive in order to prepare for the ADI part 3 test
  • 6-month duration
  • You might charge for courses to cover expenses such as insurance and car maintenance.

When applying for a trainee license, you have several options

When it comes to applying for a trainee license, you have two options. Either you must:

  • Option 1 – lesson supervision: While you hold your trainee license, you must be supervised for 20% of all lessons you deliver.
  • Option 2: extra training: While you have your trainee license, complete at least 20 hours of further instruction

You can only choose one option, and once you’ve decided, you can’t change your mind.  Discuss which choice is suitable for you with your sponsored authorized driving instructor (ADI) or training organization.

Rules for using your trainee license

You must do the following:

  • Be a ‘fit and proper individual
  • But while your license is still valid, receive the appropriate supervision or additional training.

When your trainee license expires

Your trainee permit is valid for six months. When it runs out, you will no longer be paid to teach driving lessons. If you tell the DVSA that you had stopped using your previous licence, for example due to illness, you’re more likely to acquire a new one. You’re unlikely to receive another driver’s license if you:

  • I just need a little more time to pass the authorized driving instructor (ADI) part 3 exam
  • You broke the rules when it came to using your previous trainee license.

Take the instructional ability test (ADI part 3)

Booking your test

When you’ve passed your approved driving instructor (ADI) part 2 test, you can schedule your ADI part 3 test. It’s the last of three tests you must pass to become an ADI. It’s an assessment of your abilities to instruct students. A few days before your test, your driving examiner will phone you to confirm:

  • The start time with you
  • Where do you want the test to begin? (either the driving test center or somewhere within 5 minutes of the driving test center)

The national standard for driver and rider training outlines all of the skills you’ll need to pass the test. If you need assistance preparing for the test, you can get driving teacher training.

What to take to your test

You must bring the following items:

  • Your UK driving license
  • Unless it is unsafe for you to do so, wear a face covering.
  • A suitable car
  • A pupil.

You should also provide a record of the training you’ve completed to become a certified driving instructor (ADI).

What happens during the test

An examiner from the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) will observe you giving a 45-minute client-centered driving session to one of your students. During the class, your student must drive for at least 40 minutes.

Discuss the lesson’s goals and risk management with your student at the outset of the class. This should take no more than 3 minutes due to the coronavirus (COVID-19). Allow your student no more than 3 minutes to reflect on their performance at the end of the lesson. The examiner will check for proof that you have completed the required driver and rider training.

Your test result

After you’ve finished teaching the lesson, the examiner will go over your performance with you and give you your score. You’ll receive your grade as well as your part 3 test report form from an approved driving instructor (ADI).

Total scoreGradeDescription                       
0-30FailYou will not be admitted to the ADI registry because of your poor performance.
31-42Grade BYou will be able to join the ADI register.
43-51Grade AYou'll be authorized to join the ADI registry after demonstrating a high level of training.

Theory Test For Driving Instructor

Register and start working as an instructor

Make an online application for your first authorized driving instructor (ADI) badge. You must have passed the ADI part 3 test within the previous year.

Before you begin

It will set you back £300. To pay, you’ll need a debit or credit card.

  • From 6 a.m. until 11:30 p.m
  • The online service is available.

Driver’s license with photocard

You’ll need the following if you have a photocard driver’s license:

  • The Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency’s online user ID (DVSA)
  • Your username and password
  • If you’re allowing the DVSA to use your photocard photo, your driver’s licence number

Paper driving licence

You’ll also need the following if you have an old-style paper driver’s licence:

  • To print and email the final screen to the DVSA
  • A passport-sized photograph with your ADI personal identification number inscribed on the reverse.

Your user ID and password

Your user ID may be found on all of the letters you get from the DVSA. Your ADI personal reference number is not the same as this. If you’ve never had or misplaced your user ID, send an email to DVSA. You must include the following:

  • driving licence number
  • ADI number
  • date of birth


Who is eligible to work as a driving instructor?

It’s crucial for a driving instructor to be professional, organized, and good with people. These are all crucial attributes for people pursuing this career, and they may all be honed with training.

There are also certain eligibility requirements. You must be at least 21 years old and have had a clean driving record for at least three years. Check with the Driving and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) or the Driver & Vehicle Agency (DVA) in Northern Ireland to determine whether you’re eligible. Before you can apply, you’ll need a new Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check. Even if you’ve previously had one, you’ll need a new DBS check.

Why should I become a driving instructor?

There are various advantages to being a driving instructor. You can, for starters, be your own employer. As a result, it’s ideal for people who prefer being self-sufficient, as you make all of the major decisions and manage your own time. This helps you achieve a better work-life balance because you may customize your hours and availability to fit your schedule.

It can also be quite rewarding if you are dedicated. It is feasible to earn a decent livelihood as a driving instructor without putting in long hours.

You’ll also meet a lot of interesting folks. The pupils are the most difficult but also the most gratifying aspect of the work. Making a positive impact on others while also teaching them an important skill makes the job meaningful.

The above information is the theory test for driving instructor. Hope you find our article helpful. Thanks for reading!