Driver Education

DC DMV has compiled information on all sorts of driving behaviors and practices that can keep you safe behind the wheel. Although Driver Education is currently not mandatory in the District, teens are encouraged to seek out driving schools if they need additional assistance in preparing for the knowledge and/or road test.

Preparing for Your Road Test

Preparing for your road test may seem like a daunting task. You’ve spent hours driving with an instructor, parent or guardian, and now it’s time to take your test. Here are a few things to keep in mind when preparing for the big day!

1. Ask questions.
During your training, if you’re ever unsure of something, ask questions. Whether it’s during your review of the driver manual, the Parent’s Supervised Driving Guide or behind the wheel with an instructor, ask a question when you’re not sure what to do. You’re better off asking questions rather than guessing at what you should be doing.

2. Practice, practice, practice.
It takes a lot of professional training and private practice to feel comfortable as a driver. The more you practice, the better prepared you’ll be for your road test. By practicing with an instructor, parent or guardian, you’ll receive the experience, competence and confidence you need to hone your skills and ace your test.

3. Stay calm.
Like anything else that you’ve been preparing for, it’s perfectly normal to be nervous when you take your road test. Practice staying relaxed and calm while you’re going through your training. By practicing your breathing and staying focused on the road, you’ll prepare yourself to stay calm the day of your test.
When you’re not afraid to ask questions, practice as much as possible, and stay relaxed when driving, you’ll ensure that you’re ready to pass your road test and begin a new journey in your life as a teen driver.

General Advice For Safe Travels

You know better than to drink or do drugs before you drive. You know you shouldn’t be drowsy or desperately late when you get behind the wheel. You
know not to text or tweet. But there is more you can do to make sure you are safe every time you travel:

  • Know your destination, and have a route—and an alternate route—planned.
  • Keep your car serviced, with routine checks of tires, brakes, etc.
  • Carry spares and emergency items: spare tires, bulbs, fan belt, flares, de-icer, etc.
  • Clean the windows, especially the windshield.
  • Take it slow—no more than 300 miles a day—and break at least every 3 hours.
  • Eat a light meal. Heavy meals before driving can make you sleepy.
  • Be comfortable. Adjust the seat, seatbelt, and mirrors; make sure you have sunglasses handy; don’t grip the wheel too hard.
  • Relax before you drive. Unwind, calm down, enjoy the journey. Music may help.
  • Get some fresh air. Lower the windows every once in a while.

DC DMV has more specific information for you on several driving topics. Read through the topics we offer here to refresh your knowledge and pick up
some new tips.