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If you want to train to become a driving instructor, you need to be 21 or over and have held a full driving licence for at least four years.

The Qualifications

The ADI qualification exam has three parts: a computer-based theory test, a practical driving ability test, and a practical instruction ability test.

Part 1

The Theory Exam. This exam is 100 multiple choice questions divided into 4 bands. The pass mark is 85%, but you must achieve 80% in each of the following 4 bands:

  • Road procedure
  • Traffic signs and signals, car control, pedestrians, mechanical knowledge
  • Driving test, disabilities, law
  • Publications, instructional techniques

Also included in the Theory Exam is a hazard perception test. This involves watching 14 clips of which there are 15 hazards. When you see a developing hazard, you have to click the mouse, and then you click the mouse once it develops again into a hazard. The pass mark is 57 out of 75.

Because of the wide range of subjects needed to be covered on the part 1 exam, it is a good idea to have some training for parts 2 & 3 before taking the part 1 exam. This will help your chances of passing, and will also speed up the process of training.

Part 2

The Practical Driving Test. You have to show the examiner that you can drive to a very high level, encompassing a variety of road & traffic conditions. You are only allowed to accrue 6 driver faults during the one hour drive. This test also incorporates an eye sight test, and vehicle safety questions where the examiner will ask you to describe how to perform a check on the condition and safety of three components of the vehicle and demonstrate an actual check on the condition of a further two components.

Part 3

The Instructional Ability exam. This is to measure your teaching ability, where the examiner takes on the role as your pupil. There are 2 stages to this exam. The first stage is a pupil who has had little or no driving experience, and the second is a learner near test standard, or a qualified driver taking further training, i.e. someone who needs to improve driving skills for a job.

This examination seems to carry a very low pass rate! This is usually down to Trainee Instructors being unprepared, and not doing enough training. We pride ourselves in having exceedingly high standards, and excellent pass rates!

You must pass all three parts, in order, within a period of two years. If you don’t complete them all within that time, you’ll need to start again from scratch. You can take the theory test as many times as you need to, but you’ll only have three attempts at each of the practical tests within those two years.

What it takes

It’s not just about the qualifications. To be a great driving instructor, you need to know how to motivate your pupils to do their best. You’ll need to have excellent communication skills and be able to keep a cool head under pressure – even when someone is driving on the wrong side of the road into oncoming traffic.

How to get started

Book your 2 hour starter assessment by contacting Com’Pass and ask to speak to our grade A Instructor, Stewart. With over 25 years experience he has successfully trained many instructors in the South West, some of which work for Com’Pass. This assessment is your opportunity to get answers to all your questions, he will guide you through what it takes to qualify and give you an insight of what it will be like to be a successful driving instructor.

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** For the foreseeable future we can not offer any intensive courses. We are so busy with our regular clients that it would not be fair to put them on hold while one person did a course. So sorry that we can not help at this time.

Our Intensive courses are generally taken in 1, 2 or 3 weeks depending on the course hours. These courses are not to be confused with the block booking rates above.
Learning to drive over a longer period is usually recommended so that you gain more experience but our Intensive Courses are ideal for those who are in a hurry. The driving test would usually be organised to take place at the end of the course, so you will need to book the course and have passed the theory test well in advance of the course start date so that a practical test can be arranged. Please call for more details.

  • Course 1 – 12 hours (over 2 day’s min) £456.00 plus test fee.
    This is for pupils who have failed their test recently and require a little help to achieve the required standard.
  • Course 2 – 20 hours (over 5 day’s min) £760.00 plus test fee.
    This is for pupils who have gained considerable experience, you must be able to drive in medium traffic and manoevres should all be to a fair standard.
  • Course 3 – 30 hours (over 1 week min) £1140.00 plus test fee.
    This is for pupils who have acquired some driving ability, but have had little experience. You should have fair to good car control and the manoeuvres should have been started.
  • Course 4 – 40 hours (over 10 day’s min) £1520.00 plus test fee.
    This is for pupils who have had very little but some driving experience, maybe 5 to 10 hours of driving tuition.
  • Course 5 – 50 hours (over 2 week’s min) £1900.00 plus test fee.
    This is for pupils who are starting from scratch….a complete novice.

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  • Standard Rates – Hourly Rate £40.00(Manual) £42.00(Automatic)
  • Block Bookings – 10 Manual hours for £380.00 (£38.00 per hour) 10 Automatic hour for £410.00
  • Pass Plus – 6 hour course for £240.00 or taken in own car £230.00
  • Advanced Driving – Hourly rate £40.00 – 10 hours for £380.00

To book you Theory or Practical test call 0300 200 11 22 or click on the Useful info tab on the home page to book online.

Theory Test Fee £23.00.

Practical Test Fee £62.00 (£75.00 Saturdays)

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You should make regular checks of your vehicle to recognise problems early and to keep your car maintained.

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Carrying additional passengers or loads can have an impact on the car and its handling, you need to be aware of this and also the preparation required.

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You should drive in a manner which is safer to the environment while not putting yourself or any other road users at risk and be aware of the impact of driving on the environment.

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Learn to drive during the hours of darkness and in a variety of weather conditions while making use of necessary controls.

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You should be able to stop the car promptly and under control as in an emergency and then move off under control when safe to do so.

Throughout your driving test your aim will be to slow down in good time and pull up gently, except in the emergency stop exercise, which will show your competence in taking immediate and effective action.

The emergency stop will be conducted at random during one–in–three car tests to enable extra time to be spent in normal driving.

The first thing that must be said is that an emergency stop situation should not arise because an alert driver who is looking well ahead and concentrating on the job of driving will seldom, if ever, have to perform an emergency stop. However having said that we are only human, a moment’s un-attention could mean that a situation is not read correctly and the only way to avoid an accident may be to stop quickly.

The Examiner will ask you to stop at various places during the driving test. Whenever you stop, you should do so in a safe place. It’s during one of these ‘stops’ that the Examiner will ask you to stop the vehicle as if in an emergency. The Examiner will hold up their right hand and say ‘Stop’.

This is the one occasion in the test when you don’t follow the mirrors–signal–manoeuvre routine. Before giving you the signal to ‘Stop’ the Examiner would have checked the road behind. They won’t ask you to stop if there could be a danger from following traffic. Remember also that you should in any case have an idea what is behind you with frequent checks as you are driving along.

Because this is an emergency priority must be given to prompt action, this means moving your foot as quickly as possible to the footbrake. It is important to remember to apply the footbrake first and then just before you stop push the clutch down. Leaving the clutch until the very end allows the engine to assist with the braking. Pushing the clutch down too soon will disengage the engine from the drive wheels and the car will lose the engine braking effect. When you put your foot on the brake pedal you should brake progressively harder to avoid the wheels from locking. Obviously the intention is to stop quickly but if you lock the wheels the car can skid and then you will have very little control and it may take even longer to stop. Should the wheels lock during the braking procedure then use what is referred to as ‘Cadence Braking’ which involves momentarily releasing the brake and immediately re–applying it. This will allow the tyres to regain their grip. Modern cars have ABS (antilock brake system) so the car will cadence brake for you.

While you are braking you should keep both hands on the wheel to give you the greatest possible control over the steering. You should make sure that you keep the wheel straight, do not try to steer while you are braking as this could also induce a skid. Keep both hands on the wheel until the car has fully stopped. When you have come to a halt apply the handbrake and go into neutral. You will realise that having stopped under these circumstances your vehicle will be out in the road. Before moving off you should look in the mirrors and around over both shoulders (to include the blind spot) to make sure that it is safe to move off.

Remember: Not looking over your shoulders before moving off is one of the easiest ways to pick up a driving fault; you are usually so pleased that you brought the car to a stop without skidding that you simply forget. Don’t let this happen!

The Driving Test

The examiner on the driving test will expect you to:-

  • Stop the car promptly
  • Keep the car under control without locking the wheels
  • Stop the car in the shortest possible distance
  • Stop the car without endangering other road users
  • Use proper all-round observation before moving off again
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You should be able to complete the following manoeuvres. Parallel Park, Parking in a bay and pull up on the right-hand side.

Using reverse gear is difficult for new drivers. The car steers differently, the front wheels become, in effect, the rear ones. When you drive forward you can see the car turning when you steer. In reverse, you have to wait for the steering to take effect.

The Driving Test

The examiner on the driving test will expect you to:

  • Reverse safely
  • Correctly
  • Smoothly
  • Under control
  • Keeping reasonably close to the kerb
  • Without mounting the kerb
  • Without swinging out too wide

The examiner will also be looking to see that you:

  • Check traffic and road conditions
  • Look out for traffic and pedestrians
  • Stop in a safe position

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You should be able to position the car correctly, overtake and also make progress when safe to do so.