Secrets of the Driving Test?
Well this was actually a program on ITV, it was called the Secrets of the DrivingTest. In fact Learndrive were contacted years ago to be a part of it. In my opinion it was interesting and funny (although I suppose it depends a bit too on whether on not you like Alan Carr). As far as I am aware it is the first time ever that the DVSA has allowed filming of an actual driving test. Want to watch it? Here’s the link https://www.itv.com/hub/secrets-of-the-driving-test/2a5390
Is there actually a secret to passing the Driving Test?
YES there is – here it is, the actual secret to passing your test … drum roll please… it is called practice. But, like my daughter once correctly told me, it is not just about practice it is about GOOD PRACTICE. Quite clearly from this TV show you can see this (and I am only on episode 1.) Some of these pupils without an instructor are just not getting good practice, nor good advice.
I do not want to slate anyone, practice with friends and family can help on certain occasions, but I truly believe this needs to go hand in hand with professional tuition, or better still, only be considered when learner is already at a reasonably good standard. Lord knows I would not want to teach anyone without my dual controls in the car.
So do you have any tips for passing the Driving Test?
You can google this and come across loads of so called advice, some advice says GET TO KNOW THE DRIVING TEST ROUTES, KNOW THE TEST CENTRE, CHOOSE THE TEST TIME, EAT A BANANA/MARS/KALMS, I even read on one website KEEP YOUR EYES ON THE ROAD! Okay I admit there can be some good advice to be found, but there is no miracle read that is going to help you to pass and what frustrates me, probably most, is the common theme of learning test routes. Firstly once you have passed you need to be able to feel safe and confident to drive ANYWHERE (isn’t that the whole point of the test? to show this to the examiner?) and secondly test centres may have say around 15-20 routes, it is not a case of learning a couple of routes.
I hope to come back to this blog and work a bit more on it, but in the mean time I am going to keep it relatively short and sweet and give you some GOOD advice on how to pass the Driving Test;
1. BE PREPARED
Your instructor should cover everything with you, so you know what to expect on test. This means you should have done all of the manouevres, emergency stop, used Sat Nav, possibly done a Mock Test, vehicle safety check Q & A etc. You should have excellent routines (eg MSM) and very good planning and awareness and car skills. You should know what the test is going to be like and have an idea of how the test is marked. I also believe it is important to have a drive which feels like a test, eg a Mock Test or a quiet drive, so you get used to how it will feel on the actual test.
2. BE POSITIVE
We all get nerves, I think if you didn’t get nervous for test there is probably something wrong with you. You need to be ready for the test and know that you are safe to drive, you need to be reasonably confident that you are going to pass and you should not need constant reassurance or prompted help from your instructor – if you feel you need this then you might not be ready. If you don’t need this then believe in yourself that you can pass the test.
Listen? You might think I mean listen to the examiner, well this is true, but more importantly listen to your instructor. Your instructor is a professional, probably with lots of experience, they know when you are ready for test and should not enter you for test if you are not ready. I have come across many pupils who think they are ready but often when you ask them to drive unaided for say 20-30 minutes they can go to pieces, this is because when they are driving with help they can often feel they are driving better than they are. Some pupils just have no idea what is needed to pass and I appreciate there may be some learners that think they are being shall we say milked? to those pupils I would suggest asking for a mock test or asking for the opinion of another instructor to determine if they are ready. I always say if you are not happy with your instructor then change, just like you would do with any service. If the instructor feels you are ready for test then this is because you have accomplished 1 & 2 above, you are prepared and are positive and are ready to pass the driving test!