The driving test will change on December 4th 2017, so it means that the verbal instructions given by the DVSA examiner will be modified to describe the new requirements. The changes will include the following:
The pre-briefing at the start of the test.
The "tell me" safety question.
The "show me" safety question.
Two new manouevres - 1. Pull up on the right and reverse. 2. Parking in a bay.
The time the test takes.
The link below takes you to the official DVSA document and the videos giving examples of the show me / tell me questioning and the two new manouevres.
Click The Link Below to View the Changes and Videos.
For instructors and students having private practice. The DVSA have, as far as we can tell, decided on the sat nav device to be used on driving tests from December 4th 2017. It is to be the Tom Tom Start 52. This model is available from Amazon for just under £100, but you can use any device on your driving lessons. Warm Regards, Tom Lowe.
Changes to the ADI Part 3 From October 2nd 2017.
On the 2nd October 2017, ADI part 3 tests will never be the same again. For years now, (decades) PDI’s, (trainee driving instructors) have had to finally qualify by undergoing and passing the Pre Set Tests system, which was considered by many to be outdated and often inconsistent.
The examiner would role play a learner driver at two different stages and the PDI would have to identify and correct any faults committed in the “core competencies.”
The core competencies will still be highly relevant in the new test, but should be approached differently.
So what will change?
The new part 3 will closely resemble the ADI Standards Check that fully qualified driving instructors have to pass every 4 years, creating a real life driving lesson that will give an example of the true potential of the trainee instructor.
There will no more role play by the examiner. The PDI must take a real student and conduct a one hour driving lesson, with the Senior Driving Examiner, observing from the back seat, just as in the ADI Standards Check.
The trainee will have to demonstrate a sound driving lesson, using key skills such as risk management, lesson planning, gaining agreed goals, correct levels of instruction, coaching techniques, proper communication and forward planning.
These changes will make the qualification process much more realistic and will go a long way to helping the trainee develop into a top driving instructor.
For further information, or if you need some quality help,
There is some opinion doing the rounds that it is best to avoid choosing a manouevre on the standards check. This has some truth to it if your approach is wrong. If you do decide on a manouevre, it is probably best to "recap" an exercise that has already been done on a previous driving lesson, which will avoid the need to go into detailed explanations, which will involve too much time at the kerbside.
Say you are looking atbay parking. Keep it simple, the hour will pass quickly, and you may not even get a full hour.
Focus on the skills involved, clutch, observation and steering and get the student showing those skills straight away on leaving the test centre car park.
Link the manouevre to real life- "When will you be parking?"- shopping, college, cinema etc.
Discuss the advantages of reversing into a bay, or when it is best to go in forwards, to easily load shopping for example.
Look at the car park. What happens? Out of control trollies, children can't be seen easily, car doors, complicated routes in and out. Look out for drivers moving off without looking (you will see one) and use it as a talking point. Discuss lighting as well, some areas may be dark at night and student may feel vulnerable. All of these points can be expanded.
But don't forget to do the manouevre, I would say a couple of times into an empty bay, and then choose a different bay, perhaps with cars around,depending on the students ability.
Changes On The Way For ADIs And Learners.
The DVSA’s plans for 2016-17 are to continue with the improvement of its operations with the intention of benefitting all parties involved, from the new learner to the experienced driving instructor. The changes recently announced include:
For Learner Drivers:
An effort to reduce waiting times for driving tests through recruiting more driving examiners.
• A continuation of the review of the driving test, to ensure standards are maintained and improved into the future.The project will be continued to investigate whether students should receive night time and motorway lessons before they can be granted a full licence.
• To ensure that 95% of students receive an appointment at their preferred theory test centre within two weeks of the date requested.
• Continue to develop the hazard perception test, with additional clips.
•Replace the ADI Part 3 with the Standards Check. This will at least match everything up.
• Work with key ADI stakeholders “to agree proposed indicators for an earned recognition scheme for ADIs”. (Whatever that means!)
• Attempt to produce an online system so that ADIs can book their standards check at a convenient time.
• Investigate changing legislation, so that fully qualified instructors can give motorway lessons to learners in a dual controlled car.
• Change the law to enable ADIs to resign voluntarily from the register and “allow those who’ve lapsed voluntarily to re-join the register by successfully completing a Standards Check rather than re-qualifying”.
As these changes develop, we'll attempt to keep you informed.
Standards Check- Marking Procedure.
There are 3 sections on the examiners marking form, called the SC1:
Teaching & Learning Strategies.
Here we'll have a look at each section.
The plan and structure of the lesson should be appropriate for the student's experience and driving ability.
Select a route where your student can safely practise their driving to achieve the agreed goals . It should gradually become more challenging,but take care not to take the student beyond their comfort zone.
To score highly on this category try to incorporate the following.
Discuss with the student their actual driving performance and compare it with their claims.
Be aware of any faults and weaknesses in the lesson and respond to them.
Pick up on any concerns or issues raised by the student.
Keep an eye on your student and deal with any non-verbal signs of discomfort or confusion.
This section is the most detailed in the examiners guidelines because of the safety factors involved.
You as the ADI are responsible for ensuring that the student has the awareness and ability to manage risk and that this process should be shared between you both, being sure that the student is aware of his share of responsibility. Sometimes a high risk event will occur and you will need to act quickly and positively, as you are responsible for everybodies safety. Be sure to discuss the event with the student in a safe area. If you do not respond to safety critical events, you will fail the standards check. You should continue to discuss the share of responsibility throughout the lesson so that the student knows what is expected of them
As with any driving lessons, instructions and directions must be clear and on time.
Any verbal or physical interventions should be timely and appropriate, and the student should be allowed to deal with situations by themselves if possible.
A high score in this section can be gained by using the following techniques:
Ask the student what they understand by and what is meant by risk.
Ask the student what can create risk, such as the use of alcohol or drugs, or friends in the car larking around.
Clearly setting out what is expected of the student and what the student can reasonably expect of the ADI
Ensuring that the student understands what is required of them when there is a change of plan or they are asked to repeat an exercise. Q & A can be useful here.
Teaching and Learning Strategies.
When giving advice for examiners, the DVSA state that: “It is impossible to force learning on a pupil. Progress is always determined by what the pupil is comfortable with.”
The examiners judgement should be about whether the ADI can help the pupil to learn in an active way. There will be many times when it is useful to use a coaching technique but more traditional teaching methods are still valuable.
The teaching style needs to be suited to the pupil’s learning style and current ability.
Signs that you’re fulfilling this criteria include:
Showing that you’re actively working to understand how you can best support the pupil’s learning process (you might not achieve a full understanding in the session, but it’s the attempt that demonstrates competence.)
Altering your teaching style when necessary.
Ensuring that any advice, instruction or demonstration is accurate.
Linking learning in theory to learning in practice.
Dealing with faults promptly.
Providing enough uninterrupted time to practice new skills
Providing the student with guidance about how they might practice independently.
Using opportunities and examples to highlight learning.
Giving appropriate and timely feedback to the student throughout the lesson.
Following up on any queries the pupil has/had.
Maintaining an appropriate, non-discriminatory manner throughout the session.
We hope these notes make sense, they are one of many ways to try to "get into the examiners head." When you have an idea of what they are looking for, it all becomes clearer. We've had a good deal of success at John Lowe Driving using this information, so it does work, as the more you know about the set up, the more confident you will become.
Some Whispers about Trainee Instructors.
There are some rumours doing the rounds that trainee driving instructors,(PDI's) when giving driving lessons will have to have an Approved Driving Instructor (ADI) in the car, supervising. At present, as you know, PDI's are permitted to conduct lessons when they have passed their part 2 test, without direct supervision. This may well be changing.
In my opinion, this system, although probably overdue will not be able to work on a large scale, because of the problem of payment. The ADI will not supervise the lesson for nothing, the student cannot be expected to pay extra (double) and the PDI will want something for his efforts, as is the case now. Inevitably, it will mean that the PDI will have to forfeit any earnings, and call it part of his training expenses, so on an occasional, small scale, it would work, but would not be sustainable as it is now, where a PDI can work full time, without being fully qualified.
This could spell the end of the pink licence, with PDI's having to qualify straight onto a green licence.
Watch this space for further updates.
Update on the Register.
Things are changing quite rapidly to bring benefits to existing ADI's. Here are the statistics.
In 2010/2011 there were 47,008 ADIs on the Register, now in 2015/2016 there are 40,667. During the same period, initial applications dropped from around 18,000 to just over 6000 a year, a considerable change. ADI renewals haven’t changed and run at around 9,000 a year. New ADI registrations have dropped from 6000 to under 2000; trainee licenses from around 4000 to again under 2000; and ADIs resigning or being removed are running at just under 2000 a year.
The reducing numbers of ADI's can only be a good thing for those still on the register, giving opportunities of full diaries and the option to charge more realistically for the services offered.
If any Gloucester based ADI is struggling in these healthier times, then call me, we have a very busy driving school and some great deals.
D V S A - A D I Standards Check.
As an A D I, you are only too aware that you will be required to attend a standards check at least once every four years. This is usually considered to be a pretty daunting task, but with the right approach, it need not be.
The following notes are not the definitive article by any means, but different A D I's will find different parts useful, and will hopefully assist in general.
First of all, get it in proportion.........It's only an hour!
Make sure your car is up to standard and you have everything to hand that you might need.
Choose a reliable and articulate student to instruct.(Remember there is NO role play anymore.) Brief them fully on what to expect on the standards check. Make sure they fully understand their role.
In this post, I will use "roundabouts" as the chosen subject.
A good tip is to call the lesson,"awareness and planning" instead of roundabouts, so that if a serious problem with another subject occurs on the way to the practice area, this can then become the "carrier subject" instead of roundabouts, and can be dealt with under awareness and planning.
At the test centre.
Q&A to establish what happened on the last lesson. Remember the "last lesson" is not last week, but the lesson just completed, on the way to the standards check. A lot of A D I's go wrong here!
So call the lesson, awareness and planning and link it to roundabouts. It must link to the last lesson.
Don't do a full briefing, do a recap using Q&A. Do an intro and goal setting.
Don't forget to mention the weight of an extra passenger and how it can affect the handling of the car. Also ask your student how their view in the mirror is different with a backseat passenger.
The Form S C 1, that the examiner will use to mark your standards check:
1.Did the trainer identify the pupil's learning goals and needs?.......
Use something like this- Q - "What skills would you like to improve on?"- A -"Roundabouts."- Q -"-We agreed this last lesson. Are you still happy to do this?"-"How would you like to do this?"- A - " I don't know when to emerge."...............This then gives you a chance, with the aid of diagrams and more Q&A etc., to brief the pupil on awareness & planning, danger zones , using timing and observation.
Choose an area where you can progressively build the lesson, using more complex roundabouts as they improve. Don't overwhelm them. Start soft, add more.
3.Were the practice areas suitable?.......
See number 2.
4. Was the lesson plan adapted..........?
Change the "carrier subject" if needed- if you originally called it "awareness and planning."Do not worry about changing if you have to.
It's worth reading A D I 1 for examiners guidelines, read lack of competence part.
Think of "risk" as "responsibility."
1.Did the trainer ensure that the pupil fully understood how the responsibility for risk would be shared?.........
You need to make the following statement to be sure you are covered:
“And finally .........., as the driver you are ultimately responsible for the safety of this car and your passengers. If however, I see a situation developing that I think you might not have seen I will intervene. That intervention might be verbal but if necessary I will use my dual controls or help with the steering wheel. Do you understand and accept what I have just said?”
You could add: "You are responsible for telling me if you don't understand."
"You are responsible to get the best out of this lesson-what are you going to do about it?"......Answer- Questions, diagrams, another go.
"How can I help you with this first roundabout?"........Answer- Talk through, etc.
"Will you take responsibility for following my instructions?"
"Are you willing to take responsibility for positioning, gears, speed, etc?"
2. Were the directions and instructions given to the pupil clear?
Directions and instructions is EVERYTHING you say. So keep it clear and simple.
3. Was the trainer aware of the surroundings and the pupils actions?
These statements and questions are what they want (or similar.)
"I want to see this through your eyes.-Tell me what's happening."
"What can you see?" "Is there any movement?"
4.Was any verbal or physical intervention by the trainer timely and appropriate?
This comes down to the appropriate level of instruction.
5.Was sufficient feedback given to help the pupil understand any potential safety critical incidents?
This comes down to lack of instruction. Failing to examine an incident. If something does happen, you must discuss it. Find out what pupil is thinking and feeling. Bring in other scenario's if possible......"How would that situation be different at school time?" Remember the old core competences may not be on the S C 1, but they are still there in disguise. You must still refer to them.
TEACHING AND LEARNING STRATEGIES.
DO NOT MISS OPPORTUNITES!.........If you see other road users driving erratically, pick up on it! Don't miss any chances to discuss the behaviour of others.
1.Was the teaching style suited to the pupil's learning style and current ability?
Use questions such as, "How would you like me to help you with this?" Use any situation to discuss (see above.)
As described earlier, you must use the core competencies:
Recognize the fault.
Analyse the fault.
Correct the fault.
2.Was the pupil encouraged to analyse problems and take responsibility for their learning?
Can be Q&A to analyse problems.
3.Were opportunities and examples used to clarify learning outcomes?
See what others are doing and discuss. Can be others doing things right as well. Point out good and bad.
4.Was the technical information given comprehensive, appropriate and accurate?
Know your subject. (The examiner will!)
5. Was the pupil given appropriate and timely feedback during the session?
Link feedback to what happened- don't leave it too long afterwards, especially if the incident was safety critical.
6.Were the pupil's queries followed up and answered?
Don't miss a chance to answer.
7.Did the trainer maintain an appropriate non-discriminatory manner throughout the session?
Don't categorize, learners, boy racers, white van etc., don't discriminate or stereotype.
8.At the end of the session- was the pupil encouraged to reflect on their own performance?
Engine off at driving test centre. Get pupil to self-analyse-"What have you done well?" "What have you improved on?" "Is there anything left that you haven't asked me?" "Are there any more skills that you would like to develop?"
You can then end the driving lesson with a link to the next lesson, from the information just gained.
LEVEL OF INSTRUCTION.
It is important to get this right. There are three basic levels, depending on the learners stage and the road situation.
Full talk through.
You can use all three at a time. Example-"Slow down to 10mph, there may be a lorry round the corner, and that will give you more time to react." Add in the underlined part, it makes all the difference.
"Show me with your eyes that it is safe to turn."
"What if that red car carries on reversing?"
This is a solution finding, self evaluation tool. Use scaling at the beginning and end of the lesson.
Scaling. Choose a scale of 1-10, 1 being low and 10 being high.
"What score are you now on this?" "What would you like it to be by the end of the lesson?" (It doesn't have to be 10, it can be 6 or 7.) If necessary, ask them to re-evaluate. (Justify that 7.) How did you score on the so and so? Find solutions.
You can also ask the student to picture a ladder-what rung are you on?
Mind Maps can also be used for solution finding and self evaluation, but to describe it properly requires another article. Coming soon.....
MAKE THE LESSON "REAL."
Use real situations in the standards check lesson, by discussion, description and observation. Other ways:
"Tell me the story." Ask the student to describe an event and some likely outcomes. Discuss how to avoid potential accidents.
"Give me a time when you would".......(Use excessive speed, use a phone.)
"Being a passenger, can you remember being scared?"
"What factors are you taking into account when you decide how fast to go on this road?"
You can vary your approach to Q&A and make it more interesting. These are good expressions:
Was? Will? Would? What if?(that's a good one.)
Describe to me.
7 Deadly Sins.
Below is a list of the seven most common reasons for failing a standards check:
Was the lesson plan adapted, when appropriate, to help the pupil work towards their learning goals?
Did the trainer ensure that the pupil fully understood how the responsibility of risk would be shared?
Was the teaching style suited to the pupil's learning style and current ability?
Was the pupil encouraged to analyse problems and take responsibility for their learning?
Was the pupil given appropriate and timely feedback during the session?
Was sufficient feedback given to help pupils understand any safety critical incidents?
Was the pupil encouraged to reflect on their own performance?
I will publish the 7 deadly sins in detail in the next post.
Well, that's all for now on quite a big subject. Remember, these are only notes to help you pick up on some confusing points. Add some of these to what you do every day, and you will be fine.
In this post I will describe the seven most common reasons for standards check failure, as advised by the D V S A.
Was the lesson plan adapted, when appropriate, to help the pupil work towards their learning goals?
At the start of the lesson you need to work with the learner to determine goals for the lesson – note that this involves more than simply asking “What do you want to do?” As a result of the initial ‘goals conversation' you will agree a lesson plan.
The lesson plan will sometimes be a fairly standard ‘set format' lesson in a given area – and might be sufficient to help the learner attain the lesson goals. However, given that everyone is different you need to have the flexibility to make changes ‘on the hoof' where necessary.
Are your learnersalwayscomfortable and able to cope with the situation that they are in?
It might be that they are struggling a little with an agreed ‘challenge' – that's fine, as long as they are viewing it as a challenge and happy with the situation. However, if someone is ‘out of their depth' or the exercise is not helping the learner to move towards his/her goals, then YOU need to instigate a change of plan (discussed with the learner).
The ‘inclusion' element is vital. The learner should know what they are supposed to be doing and taking responsibility for it all – if things are going wrong because of bad planning on your part, that information should also be shared and the situation corrected.
2. Risk management
Did the trainer ensure that the pupil fully understood how the responsibility of risk would be shared?
This is classic "job sharing" situation – The learner needs to know at all times how the job of "managing risk" will be shared. Here's an example given by the DVSA:
“At all times I expect you to drive as carefully and responsibly as possible. I will expect you to be aware of other road users and to control the car. However, I do have the ability to take control of the car in an emergency. I will only use these controls when I feel that you are not dealing with the situation yourself. If that happens we will take some time to talk about what happened so that you understand for next time.”
This statement is from the D V S A, but the similar statement in the previous post (D V S A- A D I Standards Check) is also quite acceptable.
Was the teaching style suited to the pupil's learning style and current ability?
Different learners have different preferred ways of learning and understanding. Some like to get ‘hands on' others might prefer to discuss things and ask/answer questions first.
You can find out a lot about how people learn best by noticing how they respond to different teaching methods. It's probably quicker to ask - sometimes you can get a direct answer to questions like ‘How do you learn best?', other times you might have to dig a bit, for example, by finding out about what they like doing at school, or what their hobbies are.
What's really important here is your awareness of the learner's current state.Are they engaged and enjoying the lesson, or are they looking detached or bored? If they are not fully engaged, a different approach will probably help.
How often do you ask “Is there any way I might have helped you differently?”
4. Taking Responsibility.
Was the pupil encouraged to analyse problems and take responsibility for their learning?
“A key part of the client-centred approach is development of active problem solving in the pupil. This means that the ADI has to provide time for this to happen and has to stop talking for long enough for the pupil to do the work.”
Effectively this means that it's not your job to do the learning, it's theirs!
How many times have you asked a question and then jumped in with the answer yourself if the learner has not responded early?
There are numerous ways that you can encourage learners to analyse problems and other issues. You might:
Use comparative demonstration
Get the learner to try different things (trial and error)
Offer relevant info to fill any gaps in understanding
Pull up to discuss
Set home learning projects
Show media clips and discuss the situations
Replay dash-cam footage
Find out what works for the learner and the situation. But remember – simply ‘telling' does nothing to encourage responsibility.
5. General feedback
Was the pupil given appropriate and timely feedback during the session?
The DVSA info about this includes the following:
“All feedback should be relevant, positive and honest. It is not helpful if the pupil is given unrealistic feedback which creates a false sense of their own ability. Where possible, feedback should not be negative. Rather than saying somebody has a weakness, consider expressing it as a learning opportunity. However, if they need to be told something is wrong or dangerous there is no point in waffling. The pupil should have a realistic sense of their own performance.”
Never assume that your learners know when they are doing well or badly. Ask questions to establish their thoughts about any given situation and then confirm, or fill in the gaps. For feedback to be useful it needs to be ‘relevant and timely'. It's not always possible to give immediate feedback because of the situation you are in – but it must be given as soon as practicably possible.
Also… Never assume that your feedback has been understood – ask questions, be aware of body language and facial expression and monitor actions following the feedback.
Finally… Remember that eventually, your aim is to develop a driver who does not need your feedback to drive at test-standard (and above). Of course, there will always be information you can offer, – but too much feedback can hamper the acquisition of self responsibility.
6. Safety critical feedback.
Was sufficient feedback given to help pupils understand any safety critical incidents?
This is closely linked to general feedback above – but is specific to particular dangerous or potentially dangerous safety related incidents, that have occured. The same rules apply as with all other feedback in that it should be:
Personal (related to previous relevant issues)
Timely (offered at the appropriate time)
Learners should be encouraged to consider the cause of the incident, how it could have been avoided or dealt with better and how similar situations can be avoided in future. In order to fully understand the situation you will often need to give feedback about the facts (not judgements!) – better still to elicit feedback; to help the learner to remember/uncover the facts for themselves.
Be aware that some safety-critical incidents are the result of poor or insufficient lesson planning – if this is the case use the situation as a learning experience for both of you. What can be done differently in future? How can poor planning affect drivers after they have passed the test?
All errors can (and should) be seen and dealt with as learning and development opportunities.
Was the pupil encouraged to reflect on their own performance?
The review or recap process is a discussion in which both learner (primarily) and instructor consider how the lesson went.
So what's the point?
From a Standards Check/Learning point-of-view the review highlights the learning that has taken place and lessons learned from ‘problem issues'. It will also look forward to further development in future lessons and between lessons. By encouraging the learner to reflect on what went well (and not so well) you ensure that they have a realistic and more objective idea of their progress towards the test and becoming a safe, independent driver.
It is also valuable from a commercial point of view, as the student will tell friends and family how thorough their learning process is. They will leave the car better equipped than when they got in it.
When looking at each of the seven headings, they are all related to communication between the driving instructor and learner driver. This might be outward communication, sharing vital information about the lesson process with the learner, or inward communication, watching body language and/or listening to the learners feedback, answers to questions, etc.
For learning to take place effectively and as speedily as possible you must make sure that your students have all of the information they need - at all times.
We will all have to do a standards check, so having a plan for the event to refer to isn't a bad idea. Some of it is obvious, but some points might help.
These are subjects that should not be missed out and you can work your lesson plan around them.
Make sure your car is in good order, clean and tidy
Before the standards check, assess your pupils needs.
Get to the test centre 10 minutes early.
Have pre test chat to your pupil and put them at ease.
Go into the waiting room a few minutes early, with your ADI certificate.
Be confident when you meet the examiner and introduce yourself.
Have some information in mind about your pupil, past driving history, etc.
Back in the car.
Introduce the pupil to the examiner.
Ask the pupil some questions about how the car may respond and feel different with the extra passenger weight in the back.
Recap the previous lesson (on the way to the driving test centre) using Q/A.
Find out from the pupil what they want to improve on in this lesson. (2 or 3 goals at the most.) Make sure they are realistic. Write them down, so you don't forget them.
Discuss risk management with your pupil. See the section on risk management on this page in D V S A- A D I Standards Check. Do not forget this!
Out on the lesson.
To achieve the goals, make the lesson interactive, pull over and discuss events that occur.
Pick up all areas for improvement, some on the move, some at rest, depending on pupils ability.
Watch the time, it goes quickly, so get back on time.
Recap and reflect on the lesson with the pupil, on how well they drove, what was learnt, what went well and what could be improved on.
Find out what they would like to do next lesson, and set some new goals.
Listen to the examiners comments and make notes if you want to.
Hope these notes can help in some way, if only to organise you approach.
An ADI's Standards Check Experience
The following article was published on facebook in the ADI Standards Check group. It sums up the sort of requirements needed for your success. The author was David Griffiths.
Haven't posted on here before, I'm one of those silent people. However I have been reading the posts and files. This is what this forum did for me. Had my standards test this morning and I was graded A. I felt I needed to write a post as it may help others with their tests. I'm not going to write a normal report but write the main meat of what I did. Preparation and practice was the key for me. I was graded a 6 on my last check test but didn't want to rest on my laurels. I knew about SMART lesson planning but hadn't really used it. I started about 2 months ago and what a difference to my lessons. I got more out of my pupils they became more independent. It works, it made them think for themselves. Risk managements- once again made the pupils responsible, they are the driver. Also made sure they understood it was shared responsibility but I only stepped in if I needed to. Route- check it, does it meet pupils goals, can I park to sort out faults, debrief specific areas and have time to do same route again to practice and develop pupil faults. Remember simple to complex I did a very complex roundabout but started on the simplest route around the roundabout and developed it from there. I mentioned simple to complex examiner loved it. Reflective practice- my pupils get a written reflective sheet to take home and complete, they bring it to their next lesson. Remember though you may have a great plan for the lesson and agreed goals the previous week but once you read the reflective sheet it could all change, pupil centred. At the end of my test I gave my pupil a reflective sheet, examiner loved it. Q&A -open questions all the way but not when your pupil has to concentrate let them get on with it. Question timing is another skill worth practicing. In a nutshell use SMART lesson planning it covers everything, after that risk management and responsibility ending with reflective practice. Another instructor asked me to explain SMART. I was about to go into my spiel and then said "go and research it, practice it and use it, it's the only way you will understand it" it worked for her. Yes I did the normal fault finding analysing etc and no my pupils don't do everything they want, what they want may not be realistic. I'm in charge but I make them responsible. Be your self, use humour, I did that's what I always do. I hope this write up helps, sorry it's not the normal write up. It's supposed to make you think about it, research it and use it. It works and your pupils will love it. Thanks Dave
The first heading in the ‘Lesson Planning’ section of the ADI Standards Check Assessment Sheet relates to ‘Learning Goals’. The examiner needs to be satisfied that the following question is answered in a positive way: “Did the trainer identify the pupil’s learning goals and needs?” This post examines: • A definition of learning goals • Process Goals and Outcome Goals • Traditional versus client-centred goal setting • Helping learners to set goals • SMART goals • Keeping to the learner’s agenda • Obstacles when changing your approach
With thanks to John Farlham of Smart Driving.
A definition of Learning Goals Learning goals are specific statements of what the learner intends to achieve during the lesson. Goals can relate to knowledge, attitudes, feelings or skills. The term ‘goals’ has been around for a long time; instructors using a traditional (teacher-centred) approach to training often use the term ‘teaching goals’ – however, when adopting a ‘client-centred’ approach we focus on ‘learning goals’ or ‘lesson goals’. Goals can be long term, for example ‘To learn all the slow speed manoeuvres’ or ‘To pass the driving test’ – or short term, for example ‘To complete a reverse park exercise unaided’ or ‘To slow down early for the next three junctions’. The difference between ‘teaching goals and ‘learning goals’ is simply their origin. ‘Teaching Goals’ originate with the instructor – ‘Learning Goals’ come from the learner. Learner and instructor In this publication the term ‘learner’ is used in a generic sense to mean ‘somebody who is learning’. The term instructor is used to denote the in-car teacher. The learner in your car might be a provisional licence holder, a driving instructor, a fleet driver, a police driver or anyone else who is attending a training session with you to further develop their driving or teaching skills. In a client-centred relationship both the instructor and learner will be learning and the relationship will be equal, honest and non-judgmental with no hierarchy.
Process and Outcome. Goals can be considered in two ways: Process Goals and Outcome Goals. Process goals define a series of actions that will lead towards the ultimate achievement of the outcome goal. For example, “I want to pass my driving test by Christmas” would be a clearly stated Outcome Goal - the end point of all the efforts between now and Christmas. A Process Goal might be “I intend to take three driving lessons a week between now and Christmas” – this is a process by which the Outcome Goal will be reached. The determination of Outcome Goals will require less input from the instructor than that of Process Goals. It’s fairly easy for a learner to determine an outcome: “Today, I want to complete some right turns’. The agreed process, and specific steps by which the right-turns will be achieved will often come out of a conversation between the learner and instructor. In this chapter the focus is mainly on ‘Outcome Goals’. Process Goals will however be touched on in an example. An example of an Outcome Goal might be: “Today I want to successfully negotiate right-turns”. This subject could be part of a driving lesson, could take a whole driving lesson, or be spread over a number of lessons; the achievement of successful right turns becomes the goal for that lesson (or lessons) – the achievement target. If the turns are completed to plan – then the outcome has been achieved.
Traditional goal setting. In a traditional lesson the teaching goals (or aims and objectives) would be set by the instructor at the start of the lesson. The instructor would determine the goals based upon previous experience, previous practice and his/her training syllabus. When determining the goals the instructor would also use a degree of skill and intuition in determining whether or not the learner appeared to be ready for a specific subject. All of this works reasonably well - up to a point… It can be very easy for an instructor to set targets that the learner feels unable to achieve. On the other hand, the targets could too easy – not offering a sufficient challenge. In either event the results will be similar – a lack of engagement and a barrier to learning. Often instructors will check the targets with their pupils by saying something like : “This is what we’re doing today is that okay with you?” They believe that by doing this they are being ‘client-centred’, but nothing could be further from the truth. In many cases the learner will answer in the affirmative whether they agree or not (because teacher knows best!).
Client centred goal setting. The examiners’ marking criteria for goal setting was mentioned at the start of this chapter: “Did the trainer identify the pupil’s learning goals and needs?” Notice that this is very different from: “Did the trainer set appropriate learning goals?” This second question might be considered to be more in line with ‘Aims/ Objectives’ found in the old Check-Test marking criteria. The chances are that if there’s a good equal working relationship, with good rapport between the learner and the instructor, their goals for learning during the lesson would be similar.
Excellent rapport and an equal, non-judgemental relationship are essential for a good client-centred learning experience, but they are subjects for explanation elsewhere – here we are concentrating on goals.
Working with the learner. How do you go about helping your learners to set goals for their lessons? The simplest answer to this question is that you ask… And the most basic question is “What you want to achieve today?” Now, at least one instructor will write to SmartDriving to say that if they ask the “What do you want to achieve today?” question the response will be either “don’t know” or something that is totally impractical like “I want to go on a motorway” (the motorway answer is an extreme example, but it’s suggested here to illustrate an answer that might, at first glance, seem totally inappropriate). Here’s some good news… If, in response to a ‘What do you want?” question, you’ve had answers that are similar to those above, you are already on the road towards clientcentred goal setting! But, it’s what you do next that counts. When faced with a ‘don’t know’ or inappropriate answer it can be tempting to slip back into teacher-centred mode and make a decision about the lesson content, for example: “Well I think we should do some manoeuvres” or “Don’t be silly you can’t go on a motorway until you’ve passed your test.” But responses like this do nothing to engage the learner’s interest or to explore the answers that have been given. Coming next we’ll look at the two example answers again.
“I don’t know” The first example: “I don’t know.” Instructor: “What you want to do today?” Learner: “I don’t know” Instructor: “Okay, so what needs to happen in order for you to know?” Learner: “I don’t know - what you mean?” Instructor: “Let’s start by thinking about your last lesson, how do you feel things went…” In this first example the teacher has now started a conversation that can uncover how this particular learner feels about their progress, what’s going well, what’s not going well and so on. During this ‘recap’ conversation the instructor might use techniques such as scaling to help the learner to clarify his/her thoughts. Next, we’ll consider the second example.
“I want to go on a motorway” The second example: “I want to go on a motorway.” Instructor: “What you want to do today?” Learner: “I want to go on a motorway” Instructor: “And if we were able to go onto a motorway today, how would that benefit your learning?” Notice immediately that this instructor is not being dismissive - he’s seeking to understand the learner’s answer. We hear a lot about listening skills – perhaps the most basic listing skill of all is to acknowledge and respect what has been said. If this learner is a provisional licence holder, it’s unlikely (but not impossible) that the lesson will take in a motorway – if it does the learner will not be driving. But this does not mean that it’s OK ‘not to listen’ when the learner answers the ‘What do you want to do?’ question with a ‘stupid answer’ (there’s no such thing as a stupid answer!). The learner’s comment might well have been flippant, but equally there may be a valid reason for making it. Either way it’s your job to help learners understand that they are responsible for their own learning –just as they will be responsible for their own driving after the test has been passed. This conversation could now go in many directions… And so let’s move on to consider a variation and development of the motorway conversation (which includes process goals).
“I want to go on a motorway” - Developed Instructor: “What you want to do today?” Learner: “I want to go on a motorway” Instructor: “That’s good; but can you remind me about the rules for driving on a motorway.” Learner: “I don’t mean a proper motorway I mean the by-pass.” Instructor: “Oh… That makes more sense – before we discuss that, I know that you’ve not done your theory test yet. One of the things that’s really important is to get the terminology right for different types of roads. Can you remind me what a motorway is?” (Brief conversation about motorways would happen here) Instructor: “OK, so you’d like to go on the dual-carriageway today, the by-pass. What skills do you think you will need to drive safely on the bypass?” Learner: “Mmm... I’ve not really thought about it, I just thought it might be fun. There are some roundabouts, and the traffic goes quite fast. Oh yes and the traffic lights” Instructor: “And can you remind me what we did last lesson.” Learner: “Moving off and then changing up to second and third gear.” Instructor: “So given that we’ve not yet been into any traffic or negotiated busy junctions and roundabouts, what are the chances of success if we do the dual-carriageway today?” (Note that this conversation needs good rapport – otherwise a question like the last one could sound judgemental or sarcastic.) Learner: “Mmm.. That’s a good point I suppose.”
Instructor: “So when do you think it would be reasonable for us to set a target for you to drive on the by-pass?” Learner: “Maybe in four or five lessons time. What do you think?” Instructor: “Four or five lessons time is a possibility, but in my experience it’s likely to take nearer to 10 lessons.” Learner: “Oh.” Instructor: “How will you feel after you have driven on the by-pass the first time?” Learner: “Really fantastic I guess!” Instructor: “And how soon would you like that feeling?” Learner: “As soon as possible.” Instructor: “So we need to put together a plan of how many lessons you can do each week and how much home practice you can get.” Learner: “Well my dad said that now the lighter nights are coming he can take me out for two or three hours each week – and I think I could afford to take two lessons a week with you.” Instructor: “OK, so it looks like you could be on the by-pass in three or four weeks. So bearing in mind the skills that you think you might need on the by-pass, what would you like to have accomplished by the end of this lesson?” Learner: “It will be good if I could get onto a busier road.” Instructor: “And what else?” Learner: “I’d like to do some more right turns; we did a few left terns last week but only one right turn.” Instructor: “That’s great; it looks like a plan has started to come together."
This instructor and learner have determined some ideas on which the goals can be based. But they haven’t actually set any goals yet. However, there are foundations for the two types of goals mentioned earlier. Process goals: The plan to do to lessons a week and three hours home practice. Lesson outcome goals: Busy traffic and more right turns. Now all that needs to happen is that the goals need to be made a little more concrete… Process goals A brief conversation about the process goals might include deciding whether the targets for practice are reasonable, booking some lessons, deciding when the home practice will be and coming up with contingency plans in the event of other things getting in the way. Lesson outcome goals Before talking about the lesson goals it’s important to recognise this and valuable learning has probably already taken place in this lesson. It’s important that the learner has a realistic idea about time scales and possibilities. The learner has also started to take responsibility for his own learning. In terms of the lesson goals our learner has stated that he would like to drive in busy traffic and do more right turns, so what we need to do now is to discuss these in detail - a good model for this is the SMART criteria for goal setting.
SMART is an acronym that can help you remember the key factors involved in formulating really useful goals. I prefer to think of them as, ‘Positively SMART’ goals (explained below). If you do a little research, you’ll soon discover that the acronym ‘SMART’ has a number of slightly different variations that can be used to provide comprehensive definition for goal setting. The specific SMART model you choose to use will depend on the context of the activity. These are some of the variations of the meaning of each letter: S – Specific, Significant, Stretching M – Measurable, Meaningful, Motivational A – Agreed upon, Attainable, Achievable, Acceptable, Action-oriented R – Realistic, Relevant, Reasonable, Rewarding, Results-oriented T – Time-based, Timely, Tangible, Trackable Positively SMART goals I like to add the word ‘Positively’ in front of SMART as a reminder that goals should be phrased in the positive as opposed to the negative – they are about what you want to achieve not what you want to avoid. Examples: “I don’t want to fail my test this year” - becomes - “I want to pass my test this year” “Turning right without cutting the corner” - becomes - “Keeping well to my own side of the road when turning right” “Without forgetting my mirrors” - becomes - “Remembering to check my mirrors” “I won’t stall at roundabouts” - becomes - “I will move off under full control at roundabouts”
Getting S.M.A.R.T Remember that you are working with your learner’s goals, not yours, so you will probably need to ask questions to clarify the meanings. Specific: When goals are specific, as opposed to general, there is a much greater chance of them being accomplished. “What do you want to achieve?” (If you like playing with language try “What would you like to have achieved by the end of this lesson?” and notice the difference in the level of thinking). This question gives a general overview of where you are heading. An example of a general goal that answers the “What do you want to achieve?” question might be something like: “I want to reverse round the corner to the left” – but this doesn’t give a lot of detail. You can explore the detail of this goal using further questions: • What kind of corner? • How fast? • How accurate? • When would you like to have mastered this goal? • Why is this goal important? • What help will be needed? • What are the benefits? After discussing the issues around these questions a more specific goal might end up as something like: “By the end of this lesson I want to reverse around a sweeping corner to the left accurately and under full control using my clutch control and observation skills. I will then have another skill for the driving test and beyond.” The goal sounds a bit ‘wordy’ when written out formally like this but it is fully formed and has a much clearer focus. It might be more easily digestible as bullet points…
“I want to reverse around a sweeping corner to the left: • Accurately • With good clutch control • With proper observation • To prepare for the test an beyond” Measurable: In stating our specific goal we’ve already started to look at making it measurable with words like ‘accurately’, ‘control’ and ‘observation skills’. But we need to know a little more detail about what these terms mean. Making goals measurable answers questions such as: • How will I know when I’m achieving it to the desired standard? • Do I need external verification? • What can I measure for myself? So it might be determined that accurately means ‘within 45 cm of the kerb’, control might mean ‘smoothly at walking pace’, observation skills could be defined as ‘seeing any other road user that might be affected by the manoeuvre’. Achievable or Attainable: It’s all very well coming up with specific goals, however, are the goals achievable. • Is there enough time to achieve this goal? • What’s the average time taken to achieve this goal? • Will it be possible for me to achieve this goal? • Will the location we choose affect the outcome? If the goals are not achievable it will be difficult to maintain motivation.
Realistic: It might be possible to achieve a specific goal, but the expectation could be unrealistic and dependent on too many variable factors. • Do I have the required sub-skills to tackle this goal? • Is there a suitable location to achieve this goal? • What other factors might get in the way? Time-limited: By defining a timeframe that the achievement of goals there is a sense of challenge - without a timeframe goal is simply wish. Of course, by setting a timeframe you also set an element of risk “What if the goal is achieved by this timeframe, does that mean I’m a failure?” this is why taking time to ensure that the other factors related to SMART goal setting are considered in detail. • What is our target time to complete this goal? • What might prevent the completion in this timeframe? • Is this timeframe realistic bearing in mind the factors discussed so far? Ticking the SMART boxes Note that you will not always ‘tick the boxes’ in order. For example if time was short the process might start with “What is the time frame – is there enough time today?” (If not, when?)
Exploring the goals. Let’s take a look at how the ‘goal ideas’ from above might be transformed into something that is more solid. Instructor: “Okay, let me check… You say you’d like to drive in some busy traffic and do some more right turns, is that correct?” Learner: “Yes.” Instructor: When you say busy traffic, how busy specifically, for example how would you feel about driving in the town centre?” Notice that the last question is ‘loaded’ with info from the teacher’s agenda [reference to town centre] and so it could be argued that it is not client centred, but it is designed to help the learner explore his goal). Learner: “Oh no… Not that busy. Maybe round the estate near where I live… Would that be okay?” Instructor: “Do you feel that you will be able to cope with the traffic there today?” Learner: “Yes I think so.” Instructor: “Good. And how will the busy traffic and the right turns help you towards your goal of driving on the dual-carriageway?” Learner: “It’ll help me gain some of the skills that I need for driving when there are more people around.” Instructor: “That sounds good to me. Now, when you say you want to do more right turns, do you mean right turns in the busier traffic or right turns on the quieter roads?”
Learner: “Can we start on the quieter roads and see how I get on?” Instructor: “Absolutely… Bearing in mind how we were getting on last week, how much of this you think it’s realistic to you to do for yourself today - without me interrupting too much?” Learner: “Could you help me a little bit just to get started - but then let me have a go for myself?” Instructor: “OK – But how about if we do a deal… I’ll help you if you help me? Learner: “What do you mean?” Instructor: “Can you let me know when you feel ready to have a go at any of this yourself?” Learner: “No problem.” Instructor: “Now as you know we only have an hour-and-a-half for today’s lesson, so on a scale of 0 to 10 how confident do you feel that you will be able achieve the busier traffic and right turns before the end of the lesson?” Instructor: “Mmm… About an eight.” Instructor: “And are you happy with eight?” Learner: “Yes.” Instructor: “Finally before we move off - how will you know when you’ve reached your eight?” Learner: “That’s easy, it will feel right because I’ll be able to do the right turns without your help and I’ll be starting to feel comfortable when there are more cars around me.” The conversation above covers all of the SMART criteria
The learner’s agenda. When you engage in client centred training there is only one agenda – the client’s! In the conversation above you will notice that it is the learner who develops the ideas. The instructor simply asks questions and tries not to ‘lead’ the conversation. There are several benefits to working with the client’s agenda; not least is that their motivation to learn is likely to be greater because they will feel a sense of ownership of the learning.
Predetermined lesson topics. In the examples of exploring the learner’s goals there is a ‘clean sheet’ start (“What do you want to achieve?”) – but on some occasions there will be a predetermined topic, perhaps something agreed the week before, or someone who has approached you for help with a specific topic. In these cases the lesson might start by exploring the relevance of the exercise. For example: • What does the learner already know about the subject? • What do they hope to achieve during the lesson? • What excites or frightens them about the lesson? • How and where they would like to do it? • What, if any, input they would need from the instructor? The things you discuss will vary from person to person and topic to topic. The important issue is that you need to discover what they would like to achieve and what is motivating them to achieve it.
The pupil must know their part in the risk management. This changes throughout the lesson. It is dependent on the level of instruction you are using. The pupil must know where their level is as well. Remember, the less instruction you are giving, the more the pupil becomes responsible. This needs to be clear throughout the lesson. So start soft and add more as confidence and skills improve, adjusting the level of responsibility as you go.
Choose a route that is relevent to the subject of the standards check and the pupil. If the subject is roundabouts, for example, there isn't much point in straying onto country lanes, or dual carriageways, as these are different, and independent subjects. Stick to a route that includes roundabouts that become progressively more challenging, but keep to a manageable level. Remember to adjust the risk management as the lesson progresses.
The Pupil and Subject.
These choices are very important. You can choose manouevres if you wish, but you will have to include another subject as well. This obviously means twice as much can go wrong.
Pick a pupil who you can react well with, who can put things into words, gets involved and answers questions.
Pupil Commits a Fault.
Should your pupil commits a fault, (and they probably will) you must deal with it and get an agreement with the pupil that you will work on the fault. For example, if your pupil stalls a few times early on then make an agreement with them to work on clutch control for a short while before going back to the agreed subject i.e roundabouts. It is very important to correct the fault, but it could affect your lesson plan regarding time, so make sure your route is flexible.
As on the old check test, it doesn't hurt to instruct them away from the test centre, as that can calm initial nerves. If your pupil is independent, then some careful Q/A can have the same calming effect. If you can avoid faults caused by initial nerves at the start of the standards check, it will be to your benefit. If they make a mistake, you MUST cover it, but it's far better to avoid it.
Did the trainer ensure that the pupil fully understood how the responsibility for risk would be shared ?
As risk management seems to be one of the most misunderstood parts of the standards check , this post looks at an example of how it could be used in a lesson or on a standards check.
This session looks at a left reverse with a lady who has some experience but is learning how to improve.
Today's goal is to improve the left reverse.
The location was a few minutes from her house so we agreed that she would drive there and I would sit quietly and let her get on with it, I would only step in to prevent a safety critical incident, in other words pretend I'm not here and drive 5 mins down the road on your own.
Try to introduce short 5 minute drives as early as possible in the learning process, as this gets the learner used to driving independently and making decisions at an early stage.
After the 5 minute drive to the location, ask her how she felt about the drive and was there anything she would do differently next time.You could use scaling here, but if the drive is really good there is no need.
Some learners find this excercise quite challenging, so settle them down with some positive chat about the drive, before you start the next part of the lesson.
Spend a few minutes discussing the corner (it's shape etc.) and ask her how much help she needs from you, a lot, a little or none . Lets assume she opted for a little.
Now as the left reverse is quite a complex excercise which requires a fair bit of multi tasking , ask her which tasks she would handle and what tasks would she like you to help her with.
She may ask you to take care of the observations around the car whilst she focused on her positioning and control of the vehicle.
This demonstrates risk management as well as taking some of the load from the learner.
Many of our learners struggle with complex tasks like this and so why not make the learning a little easier.
Assume next some typical examples of what often happens on this manouevre.
So she had her first attempt, and clipped the kerb about half way round, but pulled forward and had another go , this time we were well wide ,so step in at this point as it is obvious she was going to cross over to the other lane and therefore this was a risk. Askher why she felt the car was so wide and what would she do differently next time. (Steer sooner, etc.)
Sometimes sitting in a car doesn't help them to understand the situation and in particular the positioning of where the car is during the manoeuvre , so you could suggest you both get out and walk round the corner and point things out as you go. Point of turn, how much to steer, observation points etc.
Students will often visualise things more easily using this method.
OK, let's have another go, how much help do you want from me , a lot, little or none . Assume she replies none this time , fine you say , but remember I'm here and if anything happens that could threaten our safety I will step in. Agree this and let her start again.
After a few more attempts at the manoeuvre, gradually transfer the task over to her, so she is now taking care of the control and the observations, but keep to the agreement that you would step in if needed.
When the time comes to drive home, perhaps use a different route, and discuss any difficult areas on the route and agree that you will step in if needed.
When you pull up at the end, ask her how she felt her drive back went by using a scaling method to find out what was good what was not so good and what needs improvement.
This then lays the foundation for the next lesson, which you can agree.
Some more information is emerging from the DVSA, regarding the changes to the driving and theory tests, which are on the way.
Routes will be used that will stretch the driving test candidates, exposing them to varying traffic conditions that will demand sound judgement. This requires students being trained to a higher standard and spending more time on high-risk roads testing the ability of the test candidates to cope with priorities and deal with distractions.
There will be a ‘show me’ question on the move; the emergency stop will continue to be carried out as it is now; there will be one manoeuvre including the proposed drive into a parking bay and reverse out and also the pull up on the right, reverse and drive on; and an independent drive of twenty minutes with ‘sat nav’ and also possibly following road signs.
The driving instructors at John Lowe Driving will be fully trained to deliver these new standards, so rest assured that when these changes come into force, we will be ready to help you through.
The hazard perception test is evolving as well.The clips will include more vulnerable road users in the short term and then the medium term will consider adverse weather conditions and driving at night. In the longer term the theory test may go onto include case studies on scenarios and journey planning.
Also, some changes to the theory test:
As part of the Theory Test, learners must often select multiple answers for a single question – but for car-themed questions, this is now no longer the case. Instead, learners will only need to select a single answer from a selection of multiple choice answers; this change has affected 129 questions, examples of which include:
What can cause excessive or uneven tyre wear?
What is an effect of drinking alcohol?
You arrive at a serious motorcycle crash. The motorcyclist is unconscious and bleeding. What should you do to help them?
Theory Test Pro, available on this website has these updates already included, and is a great place to get used to everything.