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Driving Lessons - How Learner Drivers Can Get The Most From Lessons

American Government Special Collections Reference Desk

Driving Lessons - How Learner Drivers Can Get The Most From Lessons

Gordon Parkes
2 February 2009

When you begin driving lessons, it is important that you concentrate and follow the advice of your instructor. This will help ensure you get the most from your lessons and pass your test.

Practising with your driving instructor is the time to work on any weaknesses you may have as you learn to drive safely. After all, bad habits are hard to break once they are ingrained.

It is important that you take driving lessons with a qualified driving instructor with whom you feel comfortable.

While driving with friends and family can give learner drivers valuable experience on the road, nothing beats instruction from a professional. Your driving instructor will be able to give you advice on:

- Driving in difficult weather conditions.

- Staying calm and confident behind the wheel.

- Recognising potential hazards.

- Passing your theory test.

- Any other areas you may have to work on.

However, before you think about taking driving lessons, you must apply for your provisional driving licence.

To apply for your provisional licence, you have to complete a D1 form, which is available from the DVLA or the local post office. The form can also be filled in online.

You can send off for your provisional licence up to two months before it becomes valid, although you won't be able to drive on the road until your 17th birthday. When you post the D1 form, you should enclose:

- Original documentation, which confirms your identity.

- A passport-style photograph.

- A cheque for £45.

Your valid provisional driving licence should arrive within three weeks, and you will then be able to take your theory test and begin driving lessons.

A fairly new addition for learner drivers is the hazard perception test. This was introduced in November 2002, to help new drivers get used to driving in real-life situations.

During the hazard perception test, you will be shown a series of video clips, and will have to press a button when you see a potential hazard developing in each one.

This is designed to prepare you for driving on busy roads, which your driving instructor will also be able to help you with.

Whatever age you are when you begin driving lessons, you can ensure you get the most from them by concentrating, staying calm and following the instructions of your driving instructor.

If you follow those few simple steps, you will soon be able to get behind the wheel independently.

You can find out more about applying for a provisional driving licence and finding the right driving instructor.

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