5 questions you may ask before becoming a driving instructor

driving instructor

Are you considering a career as a driving instructor? Well, you’re not alone, since many individuals who are seeking a career change decide to pursue this exciting driving career path. And it’s no wonder, since driving instructing can be a rewarding job, where you could have the independence to choose your own hours and teach individuals an important life skill.

Before you decide to become a qualified driving instructor, you might have a few questions that need answering. This article will answer those queries, and help you to decide whether a career as a driving instructor is right for you.

1. What qualities do you need?

The difference between an excellent driving instructor and a mediocre one, is their ability to deliver driving education that will not only help the pupil to pass, but enjoy their learning experience and leave a lasting impression.

To become a driving instructor, you’ll need to be patient. This will enable you to stay calm if a challenging situation were to arise, putting your pupil at ease and helping them to safely navigate the issue.

You’ll also need to have excellent people skills, to develop a professional and friendly relationship with your pupils. Of course, it won’t always be safe to have a general chat with a learner during the lesson, but when it is appropriate, making light-hearted conversation in an attempt to get to know them can help to ease their nerves and make them more comfortable during your lessons.

You’ll also need to have great communication skills, to explain instructions clearly and guide the learner driver effectively. Being knowledgeable is great, but if you can’t properly vocalise and explain that knowledge, you could confuse your pupils.

2. Do I need training?

In order to become a driving instructor, you’ll need to train and revise for the practical and theory assessments. You could learn to become a driving instructor at a specific driving school or with an independent trainer, and they could give you the training and resources that you need to pass the exams.

3. What does the assessment entail?

Much like your first driving test, the assessment to become a driving instructor is broken up into two sections — a practical and theory test. Of course, you’ll have to demonstrate that you’re an exemplary driver in the practical assessment, showing the ability to drive to the highest standard and complete various manoeuvres successfully.

The theory test is split into two sections. The first half of the exam consists of 100 questions and you’ll be required to score a minimum of 80% to pass. The second part of the assessment is the hazard perception test, and much like your driving theory test, this will require you to watch an interactive video and click on the screen when you identify a hazard.

4. How much can I expect to earn?

As a driving instructor, the amount that you earn will be dependent on a few factors. This includes:

  • Whether you’re self-employed or work for a franchise
  • The region in which you teach
  • Your experience and reputation

The average driving lesson in the UK (in 2020) cost £23 per hour. Therefore, if you manage to build a good reputation and clientele, the earning prospects for driving instructors can be attractive.

5. How do I apply?

In order to become a driving instructor, you’ll first have to register with the Driving and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA). If you’re at least 21 years old, have held your driving licence for at least three years and have no motoring convictions, you’ll be eligible to apply. Even if you already have one, you’ll also be required to register for a new Disclosure and Barring service (DBS) check.

Now that your questions have been answered, you might have more of an idea of whether becoming a driving instructor is the right career path for you. If you decide that it is, you’ll likely find it is a rewarding and enjoyable career, that will put you well and truly in the driving seat.