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Guide to a successful Drive Test

Before the drive test:

Practice driving as much as possible with adults willing to offer honest and constructive criticism. Once you feel you can manage all aspects of driving solo, have your parents/adults give you directions, but not instructions on how to drive. This way, they will be able to really observe and comment on your driving. Ask them to be honest with their evaluation. For every lane change and every turn, ask them to let you know:

  • every turn signal you failed to indicate,

  • every time you didn’t use your mirrors, and

  • every blind spot check you didn’t perform.

TIP: Since the drive test will start and end at the driving school location, many students find it useful and reassuring to drive around and familiarize themselves with the road signs, speed limits of the area, and intersections which might present a challenge.



From the Colorado Driver Handbook:

The drive test measures your skill and knowledge of legal and safe driving practices. For safety reasons, only the driver and the examiner are allowed in the vehicle during the test. The skills measured will be an assessment of all three of the following categories:
1- Perceptual: The ability to interpret the traffic environment in a way that permits proper vehicle operation. (See and know what to do)
2- Perceptual-motor: The ability to couple driving responses with traffic stimuli. (See, know what to do, and do it)
3- Attention sharing: The ability to carry out two or more performances simultaneously. (Steer, control speed, watch)


During the drive test:

  • Do not speed more than 4 mph over the speed limit at any given time. If you don’t know the speed limit, then go 25 mph. If you are in a yellow-flashing school zone, DO NOT SPEED (20 mph max).

  • Make all stops full and complete behind the stop bar/crosswalk/sidewalk, whichever one is furthest away from the intersection. The location of the stop sign is NOT relevant to the location of your first stop.

  • Signal to enter or leave any street, parking lot, or curb.

  • Shuffle your hands on the wheel, or use hand-over-hand steering in order to turn the wheel. Never allow the steering wheel to slide in your fingers, or use only one hand to steer.

  • Turn from and into the proper lane every time. Left into the left-most lane, and right into the right-most lane available, without touching or crossing over lane markings.

  • Make sure to signal to the right when leaving a roundabout. You do not need any other signals in a roundabout per Colorado law.

  • Look in a mirror after turning, lane changing, and passing through intersections.

  • Be sure to cancel your signal after turns or lane changes if it does not turn off automatically.

  • The wheels of the car may never slip, spin, or slide at any time, for any reason during a drive test. This shows a lack of vehicle control, and there is no allowance made for ice, gravel, or snow on the roads. The driver must always be in full control of the vehicle from the time the car goes into drive until it goes into park at the end of the test.


Longmont Driving School Guide to a successful drive test License Tests

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