Over 500,000 car theory tests have been conducted between July and September of 2016 but only 250,000 actually passed their test. Car tests accounted for 89% of all theory tests over this period which makes us wonder, why is the pass rate so low?
It’s fair to assume that this drop in pass rates is due to changes over the past decade. The number of questions was increased from 35 to 50, new types of questions were introduced and interpreters were disallowed. All of these adjustments have contributed to the decrease of pass rates from over 70% in 2008 to under 50% in 2016.
Some speculate that the Driving and Vehicle Standards Agency purposely wants more people to fail since applicants are required to pay £23 each time they attempt a theory test. Looking at the statistics we see an increase of theory tests conducted from under 400,000 a month to over 500,000 a month. Does that automatically make DVSA the bad guy?
The answer is no. These changes were introduced not to decrease the pass rates but instead get people to study a lot more for the exam. DVSA wants candidates to demonstrate sufficient understanding of the theory material, rather than simply memorising it. Therefore, if you have prepared for the test there is nothing to fear, but what exactly do you need to know?
The multiple-choice questions are based on 3 books: “The Highway Code”, “Know your traffic signs” and “Driving – the essential skills”. There are available in most book shops or you can buy them online. The second part is the Hazard Perception test. The hazard perception test is made up of 14 video clips, each showing an everyday road scene. 13 out of 14 clips contain one developing hazard whilst one of the clips contains two. There are numerous websites where you can practice hazard perception tests.
If you are not a fan of reading you can also use online resources to prepare for your theory test. They usually provide both, car theory and hazard perception tests. Remember that to book your driving theory test you should use the official government website only. If you require any further assistance you can also contact DVLA at https://www.gov.uk/contact-the-dvla.