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About the UK Theory Test.
You must pass the UK theory and hazard perception tests before you can apply for your UK practical driving test. So passing your theory test in good time will mean that you can apply for your practical driving test when you are ready. Rather than needing to delay applying because you have not passed the theory test.
A question we are often asked is should the learner driver take and pass theory test prior to starting driving lessons? Well, this depends on a number of factors, such as whether you will be learning over a period of time or taking an intensive driving course. Ideally, I would suggest starting driving lessons and then take and with our help and advice pass your DVSA theory test. By revising for your theory test while taking lessons you will be better able to understand many of the subjects. The result is you will be more likely to pass your theory test first time.
Official DVSA Theory Test pass rates.
Changes to the DVSA UK theory test since its inception in 1996 have led to pass rates falling according to new official figures.
To book online click here to go to the DVSA online booking page.
2007-08 65.4% 2008-09 65.4%. 2009-10. 63.8%
2010-11. 63.1% 2011-12 60.8%. 2012-13. 59.1%
2012-13 59.1% 2013-14 51.6%
The Theory Test Explained.
The UK theory test is designed to test the learner’s knowledge across a variety of driving-related topics. The theory test comprises 50 multiple choice questions and you must achieve a pass mark of 43 or above, within the 57 minutes available for you to complete and hopefully, pass the theory test.
How To Pass Theory Test Tip:
Make sure you take your driving licence with you when you go for your theory test. If you don’t have your licence you won’t be allowed to take your theory test and you will lose your £23.00 test fee!
There are 14 topics that the test questions are taken from these are Alertness, Attitude, Documents, Hazard awareness, Incidents, Motorway rules, Other types of vehicle, Road and traffic signs, Rules of the road, Safety and you vehicle, Safety margins, Vehicle handling, Vehicle loading, Vulnerable road users. In total, there are around 1000 questions.
However, the good news is if you learn one fact or figure this will often mean you can answer numerous question using that one fact!
There is a good mix of questions including facts and figures, plus more common sense questions and photos/pictures of different situations or signs etc.
If you study using the excellent products below you should have no problems.
From 14 April 2020, the car theory test will include 3 multiple-choice questions based on a short video you’ll watch.
Currently, you have to read a case study and then answer 5 questions about it. This is to test your knowledge and understanding of road rules. From 14/04/2020 you’ll watch one video clip instead of reading a case study, and answer 3 questions about it.
There will be a short, silent, video clip and then 3 multiple-choice questions about it.
You can watch the video clip as many times as you like during the multiple-choice part of the theory test.
See below for an example clip.
You’ll be asked questions like:
- Why are motorcyclists considered vulnerable road users?
- Why should the driver, on the side road, look out for motorcyclists at junctions?
- In this clip, who can cross the chevrons to overtake other vehicles, when it’s safe to do so?
For each of the 3 questions, you’ll have to choose the correct answer from 4 possible answers.
The rest of the test remains the same.
- answer 50 multiple-choice questions within 57 minutes
- get 43 out of the 50 questions right to pass the multiple-choice part of the test
The hazard perception part of the test is not changing. This is where you watch video clips to spot developing hazards.
The UK Hazard Perception Test Explained.
The hazard perception section of the theory test uses 14 video clips, 13 of which have 1 developing hazard and 1 video clip has 2 developing hazards. You score points by clicking the mouse button when you see a developing hazard. If you judge when to click correctly you will score 5 points per clip, down to 1 point if you click a bit late. Click too early or too late and you score nothing! The pass mark (2016) is 44 out of a possible 75 marks.
The main problem tends not to be seeing the hazard, rather judging when to click for the developing hazard and understanding what is a developing hazard.
When is a hazard a developing hazard?
This is a very commonly asked question. The simplest way to think about the difference between a hazard and a developing hazard is a developing hazard is a hazard that if you were driving you would need to take action to avoid. By taking action we are looking at changing speed or possibly our position on the road. A hazard, on the other hand, is a situation that we need to see and consider but at the time is not requiring you to take any immediate action to avoid (even if in practice you may slow etc in case the hazard starts to develop).
How To Pass Theory Test Tip:
Be ready the developing hazards are often at or very near the beginning of the clip. If you are not ready you may miss or be late clicking for the hazard, losing you points.
Book your theory test.
When booking your theory test we would strongly suggest only using the official website. Click here to book your Theory Test through the official site.
Need help with the UK Theory Test?
The DVSA offers assistance for various different needs, such as hearing or reading difficulties.
Someone who is deaf or has hearing difficulties can take the theory test in British sign language.
British sign language interpretation runs alongside the standard theory test questions and answers.
For anyone who does not use British sign language, an interpreter can accompany them to the theory test centre. Please note this needs to be arranged in advance through the theory test customer services section.
There is no extra fee from the DVSA for this.
Candidates who have dyslexia or other reading difficulties can ask for a voice over in English or Welsh.
You can also make a request to have more time for the multiple-choice section of the theory test. If you do need more time, you will need to send proof of your reading difficulty to the theory test booking customer services.
If you have any other special needs, please contact the DVSA to discuss them prior to booking your theory test.
Telephone: 0300 200 1122 (English), 0300 200 1133 (Welsh)
Textphone: 0300 200 1166
Opening hours Monday to Friday, 8am to 4pm.
Revising for the UK Theory Test.
Stop are you ready for your theory test? I know we would all like to just turn up and pass the theory test without needing to revise. Unfortunately, if you want to pass your theory test you really will need to revise properly.
There are a huge number of books, DVDs and Apps available to help you revise for your theory test. We have only included what we believe are the very best and ones that our learners have told us have worked best for them.
Apps or digital downloads are by far the most popular method of revising for the theory test. Here are some of the best.
- STUDY – information on all 14 topics to help you understand the theory fully, with the ability to track your progress
- PRACTICE – answer questions on topics to see how much you’ve learnt, including practice case studies
- MOCK TESTS – includes EVERY official DVSA car theory test revision question and answer – no other app has more official questions
- HAZARD PERCEPTION – 10 official DVSA practice hazard perception interactive video clips and an introduction to the test
- EXTRAS – loads of extra features to help you prepare for your test and beyond, including The Official Highway Code and a voiceover option
- EASY TO USE – it makes revision on the go really simple with a clear 3-step approach: study, practice and mock tests
- Contains every question from the latest (2017) DVSA revision question bank
- Official Hazard Perception revision videos
- Unlimited mock tests
- Works offline
How To Pass Theory Test Tip:
When revising for your theory test pay particular attention to subjects that you don’t deal with in your driving lessons such as Motorway Driving, Car Insurance, First Aid etc.
DVD’s may not be as popular as they once were, however revising using a desktop or laptop will give an experience more closely to that of actually taking the theory and hazard perception test.
- Latest OFFICIAL Edition
Books like Apps are so handy as they can easily be taken with you to allow for more regular practice.
- The official DVSA theory test for car drivers Paperback – 16 May 2016
A must for every learner or full licence holder, DVSA Official 2015 Highway Code
How To Pass Theory Test Tip:
It’s always tempting to leave studying until the last moment. However, from experience with our own pupils, this is not a good idea. We find those who start their study well before their test are much more likely to pass 1st time.