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Instructor Qualifying Process

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Approved Driving Instructor Course

Step-by-Step DVSA Qualifying Process

Are you interested in taking the driving instructor training course? Then you’ve come to the right place, as this page has everything you need to know! Firstly, you will need to have held a full UK license for three years or more and be over 21 years old to undertake the driving instructor training. Unlike most schools, we offer ‘pay as you go’ driving instructor training, so there is no need for you to pay large upfront fees.

Following your approved driving instructor training course and successful test, you will also have the opportunity to be a driving instructor for the very successful Nayland Driving School. Your Driving Instructor training will be given by an ORDIT registered ADI, who will be there to help you every step of the way.

Now, let’s find out a little more about the exams you will need to take to become a fully qualified UK driving instructor.


Before You Take Your Exam

There are a few things that you need to do before you begin. Firstly you will need to go to the DVSA to complete a Criminal Record Check before you can go any further with your training as a driving instructor. Once you have this, you can then apply to be a driving instructor. This process can take a while, so we recommend you start studying for your part 1 exam of the driving instructor training while you wait.

The Exams

To become a driving instructor you will need to pass three exams; these are known as part 1, part 2 and part 3 (see below for more details).

Once you pass these – congratulations are in order! You are a fully qualified Approved Driving Instructor Please Contact us for more information on driving instructor training. We even offer a free consultation. First of all though, let’s look in more detail at those three exams that you need to pass.

Part 1

This is an extension of the learner driver theory test and, with a higher level of knowledge. This is a home study course that can be done in your own time. If you take our full approved driving instructor course, part 1 training will be included in this.

This driving theory test has two sections. You must pass both parts on the day to successfully complete the first stage in your driving instructor training. Once you have passed this you then have two years to pass the other driving instructor training exams.


Section 1:  Multiple choice questions

You must get 85 out of 100 questions correct over 4 categories, with a minimum of 20 in each. These sections are as follows:

  • Road procedure
  • Traffic signs and signals, car controls, pedestrian and mechanical knowledge
  • Driving test, disabilities, and the law
  • Publications and instructional techniques

Section 2: Hazard perception

In this section, you will have to watch 14 video clips. Each one of these will have a developing hazard. You will be marked from 0 to 5 depending how early you spot this hazard. Keep watching though, because one clip will have two hazards, making it worth 10 points! You must get 57 out of 75 to pass this section.

Nayland Instructor Training provides you with a study pack to help you with this stage of the driving instructor training, so you will be as prepared as possible.

Part 2

Part 2 is a test of your driving ability and can’t be taken until you have passed part 1 of your driving instructor training. It includes various type of roads and traffic conditions. Where possible it will also include motorway and dual carriageway driving. It starts with having to read a number plate at 27.5 metres. This is known as the eyesight test.

Then you’re going to be asked 5 of a possible 19 questions – these are known as show me/tell me questions. Every wrong answer will result in a driver fault (only 6 are allowed throughout the whole test). Answer all of them incorrectly and you will fail the test. All being well, you will then start the driving part of your test, and it will last around an hour. It will include the following:

  • A 20-minute independent drive. This is where you will need to follow a Sat Nav, traffic signs or a set of directions. It may even be a combination of these.
  • Possibly an emergency stop.

Plus 2 of the following manoeuvres:

  • Forward bay park
  • Pull over on the right
  • Reverse bay parking
  • Reverse parallel parking

As we mentioned before, you are allowed a total of 6 driver faults and no serious or dangerous faults. You will be limited to 3 attempts at this test.

Part 3

Before attempting this test you must have passed part 2 of your driving instructor training.

Now you have two options

  • Have a direct attempt at part 3.
  • Take out a trainee licence.

Direct Attempt

As with part 2, you are limited to 3 attempts.

Your final exam will involve you giving a real driving lesson, with an examiner observing from the back seat. This will last for around 1 hour. You must identify what the pupil wants to work on and help them achieve their goals, using client-centred learning techniques.

The examiner will mark you on 3 main areas:

  • Lesson planning
  • Risk management
  • Teaching and learning strategies

You must score a minimum of 31 out of 51 to pass this test. You must also score no less than 7 in the risk management section, otherwise you will be unsuccessful. You will learn about this in much more detail during your driving instructor course.

Trainee Licence

The trainee licence is a license that allows you to instruct for 6 months before completing the third exam. If you decided to take this route, you must complete a total of 40 hours before you can apply for it. You will be able to charge full price for lessons – although we like to point out that this is to gain experience for the final exam, not to earn money. With this, you must do an additional 20 hours or have 25% of all your lessons supervised in the first 3 months or before taking your first attempt, whichever comes first.

Get in Touch

If you have any questions about becoming a driving instructor or want to begin your approved driving instructor training course, then please get in touch with Nayland Driving School today.


After researching many different trainers and companies, I found Nayland Driving School. As soon as I met Michael his knowledge professionalism and personality shone through. I enjoyed every training session, Michael knew exactly how to get the best from me, and supported me every step of the way especially when taking my exams.

Suzi Phillips ADI

Top quality driving instruction from Michael passed ADI 3 first time! Thanks again

Keith Cole ADI

Geoff is a brilliant driving instructor! He's very patient and knowledgeable! I have learnt so much during our lessons and I would highly recommend him for ADI training.

Suzanne Death

I started with Michael as my first Trainer. He consistently showed up on time and offered great training for my Part 2. Very observant at my abilities and knew what to work on and involved me in decisions. He was very patient with me despite some poor choices on my part, but this led to discussions on how to improve. Looking forward to work with Michael as a qualified ADI one day.

Dani Barakat