The Driving Test – Part 1
For many, the day of the driving test is one of the most nerve wracking days of a young persons life. In fact these test day nerves seem to happen to everybody regardless of age or experience. I have had many students tell me the build up to the driving test was worse than doing their A levels or going to the dentist for a filling. I wonder why this is the case. In my experience as a driving instructor I make it clear from lesson 1 that I will only put them forward to test if they are technically ready and experienced enough to deal with all road scenarios.
The pupil in the build up always has doubts and moments of panic that they are not good enough or will look foolish if they fail (as they believe everyone they know passed first time with a clean sheet) or even feel they will let people down if they fail. My advice is to focus on themselves and be positive. They ARE good enough, in fact they are better than the standard required. I have seen even the greatest learner driver crumble under the perceived pressure and nerves on the day.
So what happens on test day? What should a learner driver expect?
When a student says “can we have a lesson before the test on the day?” My response is simple. If they are not ready by test day and need a lesson what are they doing there….? I do however believe having an hour with the student pre test is vital for success so they can use that time to feel normal in the car again, to relax and to try to treat the test drive just like any other drive.
After all, the driving examiners are just looking for a safe and legal drive…. Something, by test day, the student should be doing each and every lesson anyway. I encourage the learner to use that time to go over what will happen at the test centre and to reiterate they CAN do it. Trying to avoid the doubt and nerves kicking in is my primary function on the day itself. There is no pressure on the day apart from the pressure they put on themselves.
However, on the drive into the test centre car park you can see the fear in the students eyes..
If only I could do the test for them…. part 2 to follow