Are you considering a change of career? Being a driving instructor can be a rewarding and flexible career which will provide you an opportunity to be your own boss, whilst helping the next generation of young drivers get on the roads safely.
With a number of driving schools offering driving instructor opportunities, the process can differ slightly. To keep it simple, here is a step-by-step process to becoming a driving instructor from well-established driving school, Beverly Slater.
Legal requirements for driving instructors
As there is a lot of responsibility involved in teaching learner drivers how to drive, the DVLA (The Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency), require driving instructor applicants to meet their legal requirements.
- You must be in possession of your own full UK driving license or an EU unrestricted car driving license
- You should have had this for a total of at least 4 out of the last 6 years
- You cannot have been disqualified from driving in the past 4 prior to your application
- The DSA will assess your eligibility and will consider all convictions, regardless of whether these are motoring or non-motoring.
- Complete a criminal record check to meet legal requirements
- You must be at least 21 years of age
- Able to read a number plate at 90 feet, with glasses or contact lenses (if required)
Driving Instructor Training
To become a driving instructor, you must complete the three qualifying exams. These are as follows:
- A theory and hazard perception test (this makes up part 1 of your training)
- A practical driving test to assess your driving ability
- A practical test which will further assess your ability to instruct and teach others
To complete the qualification process to become a qualified driving instructor, all three parts of the training must be completed in order. Part 2 and Part 3 of these tests must be taken within 2 years of completing Part 1, else you will have to start the process again. This is important in keeping your knowledge accurate and up to date.
Where you may have failed one part of the training process, these can be re-taken. The theory test can be completed as many times as you wish, until you achieve a pass mark. Your practical tests are however slightly limited. You will only have a maximum of three attempts to complete Part 2 and Part 3 of the training within each two-year period.
Personal qualities of a good driving instructor
To be considered a good driving instructor you should possess some important personal qualities. This will help to make your work easier but also help your learners feel comfortable following your teachings.
- Hardworking, reliable, and very organised
- Patient and calm
- Able to understand the needs of students
- Able to cope with a range of driving abilities
ORDIT (as it is commonly known) is the Official Register of Driving Instructor Trainers. When accessing driving instructor training this must be from an ORDIT registered training school or independent trainer. The ORDIT approval will help you to avoid any sub-standard driving instructor training or bad business practices from those who are not qualified to offer this service. To be ORDIT registered driving instructor trainers must meet a set of guidelines, adhere to the ORDIT code of practice in relation to advertising, selling and customer service, and complete regular inspections from the DVSA.
The benefits of being a driving instructor
- Great earning potential
- Genuine Job satisfaction
- Work in your local area
- Choice of car
- Flexible working hours
- Be your own boss