Finding a Driving Instructor

There’s no getting away from it, learning to drive can be a challenging and complex task. At any given moment there are several things going on both inside the car and in the external environment surrounding it too. Getting to a point where you’re competent on the road and ready to pass your driving test can take some time and it’s no surprise to hear that in some cases, it can take an individual over a year to get their driving license. This timeframe is common for a number of new learners and within this period, it’s not unheard of for the individual to have had over 50 lessons and retaken their practical test a number of times.

Often the difference between a learner who takes a year or longer to pass and one who passes within a few months, is the standard of teaching they receive from their instructor. Unfortunately there are a number of driving instructors across the country, who only provide the basic level of tuition required to get a learner to pass their test and nothing more. Teaching a new learner just enough to pass their test, does not prepare the driver for life on the road and invariably drivers who have received poorer tuition, take longer to gain their license, as they’ll often fail their test at the first time of asking.

Good driving instructors will not only prepare you to pass your driving test, but they’ll also ensure you’re able to drive safely in a number of different situations and scenarios. Be it driving at night, driving for long distances, tackling motorways or even driving abroad. A good instructor will equip you with the knowledge and skills needed to not only pass your test, but also drive safely for the duration of time you’re behind the wheel.

How To Find a Good Driving Instructor

A good driving instructor will improve your standard of driving relatively quickly and in the majority of cases, it’s the difference betweens months of struggle or passing your driving test with relative ease. If you’re actively looking for a driving instructor to partner with, here our top tips for helping you pick the right one.

Only Hire an Approved Driving instructor (ADI)

The DVSA requires potential driving instructors to undertake and pass, a three part test in order to see if they’re fit to teach other people how to drive. The first part of the test is a multiple choice based theory test, testing the instructor’s knowledge of the highway code, traffic signs and the driving instructor’s handbook. The second test consists of a practical examination of the instructors driving abilities, as well as an eyesight test, while the third and final test, examines the instructors teaching capabilities.

All three test are important, however the third test is significantly so. An instructor’s ability to teach their students in a clear and concise manner is usually the difference between an average and a very good instructor. As all driving instructors are assessed on this particular skill, choosing to learn with an ADI, as oppose to a non-ADI instructor, ensures that at the bare minimum, the instructor you’ve chosen understands how to teach the required concepts, in a way their students will be able to understand and act upon.

As well as being an ADI, it’s worthwhile checking to see whether your potential instructor is a member of any other relevant organisations, such as the Driving Instructors Association or whether he or she has signed up to the DSA Code of Practice. An instructor who has joined any of these additional organisations is one that is serious about their craft, so it’s well worth enquiring.

Always Opt For Driving Instructors With Significant Experience

One of the first questions you should ask a potential instructor is how long have you been a driving instructor for? Teaching a new learner how to drive is no easy feat. Much of what is needed to teach this subject is gained over years of experience and instructors who have been in the business for longer, often make better teachers. Experienced driving instructors will have seen all types of learners and taught in a varying degree of situations, so opting for an experienced tutor will ensure you’re in the hands of someone who knows what they are doing.

Local Driving Instructors Are Best

Before settling on a driving instructor it’s a good idea to find out how long they have been operating in the area, as their local knowledge can have a big impact on your progress. Local driving instructors should have an excellent understanding of the local roads, meaning you are less likely to be exposed to a road situation you’re not entirely comfortable with, when you choose to learn with a local driving instructor

Choose Driving Instructors Who Create Individual Lesson Plans

Often what you’ll find with a majority of driving instructors is that they’ll teach all their students in the same way and at the same pace. If all learners were identical, this approach would be fine, however everyone is different and each student requires a lesson plan, or teaching method specifically tailored to them.

Ideally you want a driving instructor who understands where you are in your progress and is able to craft a lesson to suit you. An attentive driving instructor will create a lesson that works on a student’s weaknesses and flaws, so that time together is spent working on concepts you’re currently struggling with, instead of going over areas or driving in situations, that you’ve already mastered or are relatively comfortable with.

You also need an instructor who is capable of understanding when to increase the complexity of the lesson. Many instructors in their bid get their point across take lessons too slowly, which can result in the student feeling frustrated with the speed at which their progressing. There’s a fine line between taking enough time to ensure a concept is really understood and ensuring the student remains interested and captivated for the duration of the lesson, but it’s a line that a skilled and experienced instructor should be able to navigate effectively.

What’s The Relationship Between The Driving Instructor and The School

If you’ve found a driving instructor you are happy to learn with, it’s time to dig a little deeper into the relationship the instructor has with the driving school. The relationship between instructor and school has an impact of the terms you sign up with, so it’s definitely a good idea to enquire as to what the arrangement between the two is.

Independent drivers, who are either self employed or operate a franchise of the driving school are liable for anything that happens between you and them, not the driving school. So if for example they cancel your block booking, fail to show up or there’s a dispute between the two of you, as they’re self employed the buck stops with them, however if they’re an employee of the school you can hold the driving school responsible for anything you are unhappy with.

We know how important finding the right driving instructor it is and it really is the single biggest factor in how a students learns and at what point they pass their test. If you’re interested in finding a professional and fully qualified driving instructor in your area, fill in the form below and we’ll get back to you shortly.

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