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Driving theory test gets shake-up for 2020

Published 20 February 2020

The driving theory test is being updated to make it more reflective of real world driving conditions.

From 14 April 2020, car learners will be required to watch a 30 second video and answer three multiple choice questions based on what they have seen. Currently, learners are required to read a written case study and then answer five questions.

The car driving theory test already contains a video clip selection, as part of hazard perception, which awards marks for identifying developing hazards as soon as they start to happen.

The Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency claims that the 2020 updated test will be more reflective of real world driving and be more accessible for people with a reading difficulty, a learning disability or a developmental condition like autism.

The changes have already been welcomed by people within the industry. 

“There’s no doubt that the changes coming into effect are an improvement to the theory test," said Peter Brabin, head of training at Bill Plant Driving School.

"Whilst the majority of the examination remains unchanged, the introduction of video clips in place of written case studies puts students into more realistic scenarios akin to everyday driving experiences."

The written driving test was first introduced in the UK in 1996. Today, learners are required to answer 50 multiple-choice questions within 57 minutes. Only those that get 43 correct obtain a pass. 

RAC spokesman Simon Williams said: “This is a very positive change and should make the driving theory test accessible to many more people as watching case study videos is far more reflective of real-world driving than having to read them and then answer questions.

"We know from RAC research that being able to drive is an important milestone in people’s lives as it allows them to get around more easily. This is particularly true for those who live in more rural locations.”

Comments

Engineer Andy    on 20 February 2020

I was so hoping (as a joke) that the examiners would be checking the learner's privilege as well as their driving skills. After all, this is 2020?

focussed    on 1 March 2020

I was so hoping (as a joke) that the examiners would be checking the learner's privilege as well as their driving skills. After all, this is 2020?

I don't pretend to understand your post - but I remember taking an obviously heavily pregnant female to a test appointment in my auto driving school car.

I accompanied her to the first part of the test as she didn't want to lift the bonnet to do the show and tell questions. The examiner asked me why I was there so I quoted the relevant section from the examine's standard operating procedures. (Instructors may assist disabled candidates etc) He said "she's not disabled - she's just pregnant - When's it due? She chimed in "Any time now", That shut him up! She went out and did the test - Pass!

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