From the 6th of April 2010 pupils will be asked by DSA examiners if they would like their Instructor or Observer to sit in on their driving test, this is optional, but will encouraged by the DSA.
It will be up to the pupil to decide this, the reason the DSA say this would be better, is when pupils
fail or pass their test often they hear very little of the feedback on the debrief, however all pupils have to do is ask that their driving Instructor is present for the debrief this will achieve the same.
We do advise pupils if they wish we can sit in on the test, we leave it up to the pupil to decide it helps some pupils not others, we also do sit in on the debrief if the pupils request it.
One thing over looked by the DSA is the fact that pupils normally have only two people
in the car on a driving lesson, most pupils find it daunting enough to have an examiner in the car with them
let alone an observer, then add a senior examiner doing a check test on the examiner, now we have four
in the car, not a great idea for some one trying to pass their test for the first time.
The pupils will not be used to the extra weight in the car, which will mean they will not be aware that they will
have to break harder and earlier, and they will not be aware that it will take longer to pick up speed when emerging at junctions, therefore needing a bigger gap to allow for the reduced acceleration of the vehicle.
It would be far simpler and less daunting if Instructors were always asked to seat in on the debrief at the end of the test, the same end result would be achieved and not put the pupil under even more pressure.
The only saving grace is it is up to the pupil to decide, your Instructor will sit in on the test if you wish and I would suggest you do request your Instructor to sit in on the debrief at the end of the test.
Another change due to be introduced in October 2010 is Independent driving where the pupil will have to navigate their way to a set destination using road markings and road signs, with out directions from the examiner.There is an upside to this, to allow for the Independent driving scenario the DSA will cut the number of reversing manoeuvers to one, so if you sucked at reversing around corner you may still get a chance to pass your test.
To any one wanting to pass their driving test you will need driving lessons from a fully qualified Instructor,
do make sure they are fully qualified, do look for a green badge so you know they are fully qualified,
the driving test is not getting any easier.
I was recently asked to give some one a couple of lessons to take them round the test route before their test, hate to tell you there are at least twenty test routes at every test center which one do you want? gone are the days when Instructors just took their pupils around the five test routes so they new them like the back of their hand, gone are the 30 minute tests.
You must be able to drive the car using safe systems of driving in any road conditions and be able to deal with any road hazard for a period of 40 minutes, this is a lot harder to achieve than people think, so do your self
a favour do get some lessons with a fully qualified Instructor.
I did actually give the person concerned a couple of lessons, they did not check their mirrors once, they did not observe at all before moving off, and they did not know how to do any of the maneuvers. They actually had a test booked for the next week, you must be using safe systems of driving to pass your test and be able to carry out the maneuvers safely as well, this takes time to learn and be consistent around 50 hrs of on road experience to be exact according to the latest DSA figures so do get real.