Driving Instructor Training

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The ADI qualifying examination

The DVSA ADI qualifying examination is in three parts:

Part 1: Theory - consists of a multiple-choice test and a video based hazard perception test. (Cost £81)
Part 2 : Driving - consists of an eyesight test, show me tell me safety check questions, followed by a practical driving test. (Cost £111)
Part 3: Instructional ability - consists of a practical test of the ability to instruct. (Cost £111)

Once you have passed Part 1 you are required to undertake and pass the two remaining parts within two years. You are permitted an unlimited number of attempts at Part 1, however for Part 2 and Part 3 you are only allowed three attempts at each test. Should you fail a third attempt at Part 2 or Part 3 you would have to restart qualification again after 2 years had elapsed from your Part 1 pass date.

Waiting time for Part 1 is minimal; however because you need to pass a DBS check first, the Part 1 test cannot be taken for about 12 to 20 weeks. Waiting time for a Part 2 or Part 3 test appointment is also about 6 to 8 weeks, consequently the exam process itself from start to finish is about 6 to 18 months assuming there are no other delays. This is why intensive driving instructor training may not be suitable depending on the exam waiting times in your area.

Part 1: Theory
Multiple choice section
Multiple Choice TestThis section tests your knowledge of the Highway Code and other instructional matters via a Personal Computer and lasts for 90 minutes. You are asked 100 questions with optional voice-over. For each question four answers are shown on the screen and you are required to select the answer you think is correct. To pass you are required to answer 85 questions correctly overall (including 20 within each of the 4 subject groups tested, also known as bands). Below is a list of the topics covered and which band or group (i.e. 1 to 4) they belong too:

  • 1. Road procedure (25 questions)
  • 2a. Trafic signs and signals (5 questions)
  • 2b. Car Control (10 questions)
  • 2c. Pedestrians (5 questions)
  • 2d. Mechanical knowledge (5 questions)
  • 3a. Driving test (10 questions)
  • 3b. Disabilities (5 questions)
  • 3c. The law (10 questions)
  • 4a. Recommended publications (10 questions)
  • 4b. Instruction knowledge (15 questions)

If you have any type of reading difficulties you can ask for a voice over or request additional time within which to complete the test. If you would like to see how this test works in practice you can access our FREE Theory Test webpage but remember on the ADI test you will need to answer 100 questions.

Hazard perception section
Multiple Choice TestThis section tests your ability to identify moving hazards ahead, that are likely to cause you to slow down, stop or change direction. The test requires you to watch 14 video clips, each filmed from the drivers eye view of a car as it drives down the road. Each time you see a moving hazard start to develop you would click the computer mouse button to let the program know you have seen the problem. The earlier you see the warning signs and click the mouse button, the higher your score will be. A maximum of 5 can be scored on any hazard and a total of 15 hazards are shown with at least 1 per clip and with one clip having 2. To pass this test you have to score 57 out of a maximum possible score of 75 (i.e. 15x5).

If you would like to experience how this test works you can access the FREE Hazard Perception Test webpage but remember unlike a learner driver who only needs 44 to pass you will require 57.

Part 2: Driving
The Part 2 driving test closely resembles the current test for learners in format and content. However, the eyesight test requires you to see a number plate at a slightly longer distance (i.e. 27.5 metres or 26.5 metres depending on the width of the lettering), the duration of the test is longer to allow you to undertake all the set manoeuvres and you are expected to perform to a higher standard. Unlike the L test you are only permitted a maximum of 6 minor driving faults and what constitutes a minor driving fault may be more harshly assessed.

Part 3: Instructional ability
In 2018 the DVSA introduced a new Part 3 test. In the new ADI Part 3 test the examiner wants to observe you delivering a real driving lesson to one of your pupils, rather than the examiner pretending to be a pupil as was the case prior to 2018. In many ways this makes the test easier as a real pupil isn't trying to catch you out but the downside is you will need to show you can perform all aspects of the job for real rather than just pick up and correct driving faults that the examiner makes as was the case before 2018.

The examiner now needs to observe you from the back seat of your car delivering a driving lesson for real. Consequently, any course must now incorporate a large amount of real on-the-job practical training to ensure you succeed. Look out fr training providers who are now selling online training only.

The examiner is now assessing you on your ability to tailor the training to your pupil’s learning goals and needs. In particular, the examiner will:

  • look for evidence that the trainee instructor meets the national standard for driver and rider training
  • mark 17 areas of competence in 3 categories – lesson planning, risk management and teaching and learning skills