ADI part 1

ADI Part 1 is a test of your driving knowledge and ability to spot hazards.

Many people overlook this part of becoming a driving instructor and have the attitude of just getting it done as soon as they can so they can get on to the other tests.

You can buy your ADI part 1 books through my Amazon store if you want to be super and earn me a little commission. Don’t worry, they won’t cost you any extra.

If you rush through this test you will already be building very poor foundations for the rest of your career. Let me tell you a story about a driving instructor who I bet wishes he’d spent longer on his part one exam.

An examiner returned from a driving test with the pupil and gave them the end of test debrief where they explain the result of the test. During the driving test debrief, the examiner mentioned that the pupil had failed because he had been driving at 40mph on a dual carriageway where the limit was 30mph. The instructor said that was wrong because all dual carriageways had to have a minimum speed limit of 40mph.

For years this instructor had been teaching all of his pupils that dual carriageways have a minimum speed limit of 40mph! The examiner explained that wasn’t the case but the instructor refused to accept it. He is no longer working as a driving instructor.

You can see the official DVSA guide to driving instructor exams by clicking here.

If you have any specific questions about becoming a driving instructor that are not covered here then see my ask an instructor page to send me questions.

Read about ADI part 2 here and ADI part 3 here.

How hard is ADI part 1?

ADI part 1 is easier than the other exams because you have an unlimited number of attempts at it. You only have three attempts at part 2 and part 3 so there is much more pressure on those.

With the right training, which you can do at home, it’s quite easy to pass. It’s the hazard perception that usually catches people out and so make sure you practise it a lot..

How ADI part 1 works

You have to answer 100 questions about driving and then complete a hazard perception test. If you pass both of those you will have passed part one.

The questions are in 4 bands –

1) Road procedure

2) Traffic signs and signals, car control, pedestrians, mechanical knowledge

3) Driving tests, disabilities, law

4) Publications, instructional techniques

There are over 900 different questions.

You must score 85% (so 85 questions need answering correctly). You must also get 80% in at least each band to ensure your knowledge is broad enough. For example, you can get 100% in bands 1, 2 and 3 and 75% in band 4 and you’ll fail because you didn’t reach the minimum 80% level in band 4.

You have 90 minutes to complete this test.

This video of me taking a learners theory test is full of tips that apply to ADI part 1

Hazard perception test

On the hazard perception test you’ll watch 14 video clips on a computer which are CGI generated. Yes, it’s hard to believe from watching them but the cars you see in the clips aren’t real! The quality of the graphics is very high and was years ahead of their time when it first came out around 2015.

Out of all the clips, 13 contain one hazard and 1 of the clips contains two hazards. That’s a total of 15 hazards you have to spot over 14 video clips.

You get marked from 1 to 5 for each hazard depending on how early you spotted it. The earlier you see the hazard the more you score and the better your chance of passing.

You must score at least 57 out of 75 to pass this test. DVD’s are easily available through amazon, eBay etc. to help you practice this and they will explain it in much more detail than I can here.

How my ADI part 1 training works

There is no need to pay anybody for part one training because you can learn everything you need to know for this yourself.

Because you have unlimited attempts at ADI part 1 there’s not so much need for specialised training and it’s easy to do it yourself.

Click here to practice the ADI part 1 test for free.

Then it’s on to ADI part 2.