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Theory Test Infomation

The car theory test is made up of two parts; the multiple choice part and the hazard perception part. The multiple choice part is delivered using a touch screen computer and mouse and the hazard perception part records your responses through the use of a computer mouse button. You need to pass both parts to pass the theory test. If you pass one part and fail the other you will fail the whole test, and you will need to take both parts again

For the hazard perception test there are no separate versions for different vehicles, each vehicle category takes the same test, however the pass mark is different for different categories of tests.

Multiple Choice

Before the test starts you will be given instructions on how the test works.

You can also choose to go through a practice session of the multiple choice questions to get used to the layout of the test. At the end of the practice session the real test will begin.

A question and four answer options will appear onscreen and you have to select the correct answer to the question by touching the screen or using the mouse. Some questions may require more than one answer. You can navigate between questions and ‘flag’ questions that you want to come back to later in the test. You will have 57 minutes to answer 50 questions.

The pass mark for the multiple choice part of the theory test is 43

After the multiple choice part you can choose to have a break of up to three minutes before the hazard perception part starts.

Hazard Perception

After the break you will then be shown a short tutorial video clip about how the hazard perception part works.

The hazard perception part is also delivered on a computer but you respond by clicking a button on the mouse. You will be presented with a series of 14 video clips which feature every day road scenes, in each clip there will be at least one developing hazard, but one of the clips will feature two developing hazards. To achieve a high score you will need to respond to the developing hazard during the early part of its development. The maximum you can score on each hazard is five. You will not be able to review your answers to the hazard perception test; as on the road, you will only have one chance to respond to the developing hazard.

The pass mark for the hazard perception part of the theory test is 44 out of 75.

At the end of the test

At the end of the hazard perception part of the theory test you will be invited to answer a number of customer survey questions. You do not have to answer the questions if you do not want to, and any information given is anonymous and confidential. The survey questions do not affect the result of the test.

When you have finished the test you may leave the examination room. Once you have left the room, you will not be allowed to enter it again. You will then be given your result by the test centre staff.

Information about the Driving Test

The driving test consists of tests of eyesight, safety questions and driving technique. The test will last for 35 to 45 minutes. You must pass all parts of the test at the same time.

The eyesight test

You must be able to read in good daylight with the aid of glasses or contact lenses if worn, a motor vehicle registration mark containing letters and figures:

• 79 millimetres in height and 50 millimetres wide at a distance of 20 metres

or

• 79 millimetres in height and 57 millimetres wide at a distance of 20.5 metres

If you do not pass the eyesight test, you will not be allowed to take the driving test. The test will be marked as a fail.

Safety questions

After the eyesight test the examiner will ask you 2 safety questions.

The questions will be chosen from the following list: tyres, steering, brakes, lights, reflectors, direction indicators, audible warning device and the liquids used in the braking system, steering system, engine or elsewhere in the vehicle as a coolant, lubricant, cleaner or otherwise

The driving test

After the safety questions you will then be examined on your general driving and on two reversing exercises. The reversing exercises will be chosen from:

  • reversing around a corner
  • turning in the road
  • reverse parking

You may also be asked to carry out an emergency stop exercise.

During the driving test the examiner will give you directions which you should follow. Test routes are designed to be as uniform as possible and will include a range of typical road and traffic conditions.

Throughout the test you should drive in the way your instructor has taught you. If you make a mistake, don’t worry about it, it might be a less serious driving fault and may not affect your result. The examiner will be looking for an overall safe standard of driving.

You can make up to 15 driving faults and still pass the test (16 or more results in failure). However, if you commit one serious or dangerous fault you will fail the test. If at any time your examiner considers you to be a danger to other road users your test will be stopped.

You are allowed to take someone with you on the test, this person must be over 16 years old and cannot take any part in the test.

After the practical test

When the driving test is over, the examiner will tell you whether you passed or failed. You can request feedback on your test from the examiner, who will then go through your performance during the test.

If you pass…

If you pass and have a photocard driving licence issued after 1 March 2004 the examiner will ask you if you want your full driving licence issued to you automatically.

If you want to use this service, the examiner will take your old licence off you, scan the details and send them electronically to the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA). You will then be given a pass certificate to prove you passed your test. DVLA will then send you your new full licence by post within four weeks of you passing your practical test.

If you pass your test but do not want to use this automatic service, or have a licence issued before 1 March 2004, you will be given a pass certificate by the examiner. On the back of the pass certificate it tells you what you need to do next. This involves sending your licence and appropriate fee to DVLA who will then check your application and issue you with a new full licence.

If you fail…

If you fail the test you should ask the examiner for some feedback to help prepare yourself for your next test. Your driving report form will also show you where you made any mistakes. You can take another practical test 10 working days later.