learner driver advice - instructor qualification

In order to legally accept payment of any kind in exchange for driving tuition an instructor MUST hold (and display in the tuition vehicle) a valid licence issued by the 'Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency' (DVSA).

This licence can be either a 'Trainee Licence' which is pink in colour with a triangle shape on the front or a 'Full licence' which is green with an octagon in place of the triangle denoting that the holder has become a fully qualified 'Approved Driving instructor' (ADI).
A qualified ADI has had to pass three tests with the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency:
(1) - a high pass mark theory test;
(2) - a strict advanced driving test;
(3) - a test of instructional ability;
and the trainee instructor has passed the first two tests and usually had some training towards the third.

driving instructors are regularly check tested by the DVSA
make sure you see their licence on display before paying for tuition

Qualified instructors are tested on a regular basis by the DVSA and since April 7th 2014 they will be graded as either A or B on the Standards Check Test. Prior to this the grades went from 1 to 6 on the old Check Test where a 4 was a pass and a 5 or a 6 was a higher standard.

If an ADI fails a standards check after three attempts he/she is then removed from the DVSA Register of Approved Driving Instructors, losing his/her instructor qualification and is no longer able to legally give tuition for money or money's worth. I am happy to show my potential clients my DVSA test reports.

There ARE people out there who, despite not having even gone through the instructor qualification process, or having been disqualified, operate as fully qualified instructors! So DO make sure you see the a valid licence on display. As a learner driver it is very important that you know this.

What to do if you do come across an illegal instructor
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and created by
Lois Pallister