You may be already having driving lessons or even ready to take your practical test but you can not apply for your practical test until you have passed the Theory Test.Find your local Theory Test Centre
The theory test is made up of two parts; a multiple choice questionnaire and a hazard perception video test and you will need to pass both to get your certificate. If you feel you are ready to book your theory test you can book it online using the button below.Book your Theory Test
Only once you have passed you theory test can you apply to take your practical driving test.
How to pass the theory test: official DSA guidance to prepare you for your theory test
Taking your theory test
The multiple choice part is delivered using a touch screen computer and the hazard perception part records your responses through the use of a computer mouse button. If you pass one part and fail the other you’ll fail the whole test, and you’ll need to take both parts again.
Part 1 – Multiple Choice Questionnaire
As of January this year, the actual theory test questions are no longer published. This means that those found in revision materials of any kind will give you an idea of the questions and answers to expect but will NOT be exactly the same as those you will face during the test itself.
This change was introduced to ensure you gain a better understanding of driving theory rather than simply memorising questions and answers.
Before the test starts you’ll be given instructions on how the test works.
You can also choose to go through a practice session of the multiple choice questions to get used to the layout of the test. At the end of the practice session the real test will begin. A question and several answer options will appear on screen and you have to select the correct answer to the question by touching the screen. Some questions may require more than one answer.
You will be asked 50 questions in 57 minutes and the pass mark is 43 out of 50.
You can navigate between questions and ‘flag’ questions that you want to come back to later in the test. After the multiple choice part you can choose to have a break of up to three minutes before the hazard perception part starts.
Part 2 – Hazard Perception Test
After the break you’ll then be shown a short tutorial video clip about how the hazard perception part works.
The hazard perception part is also delivered on a computer but you respond by clicking a button on the mouse. You’ll be presented with a series of 14 video clips which feature every day road scenes. In each clip there’ll be at least one developing hazard, but one of the clips will feature two developing hazards.
To achieve a high score you’ll need to respond to the developing hazard during the early part of its development. The maximum you can score on each hazard is five.
You won’t be able to review your answers to the hazard perception test; as on the road, you’ll only have one chance to respond to the developing hazard.
The pass mark for the hazard perception part of the theory test is 44 out of 75.
At the end of the test
At the end of the hazard perception part of the theory test you’ll be invited to answer a number of customer survey questions.
You don’t have to answer the questions if you don’t want to, and any information given is anonymous and confidential. The survey questions don’t affect the result of the test.
When you have finished the test you may leave the examination room. Once you have left the room, you’ll not be allowed to enter it again. You’ll then be given your result by the test centre staff.
The hazard perception test (HPT) explained
New drivers are disproportionately involved in accidents, especially in the first months after passing a driving test. It has been proven that drivers who have taken hazard perception training have much better hazard perception skills.
Why the hazard perception element was introduced
The government is committed to reducing the numbers killed and seriously injured on Britain’s roads by 40 per cent by 2010. The hazard perception element was introduced into the driving test in November 2002 as one of the measures that should help achieve this target by encouraging appropriate training in scanning the road, recognizing at the first opportunity from the clues that a potentially dangerous situation might arise and adopting a driving plan to reduce the risk.
During the development of this test, the Driving Standards Agency (DSA) worked closely with colleagues from the Transport Research Laboratory (TRL) and the road safety division of the Department for Transport, both of whom thought this test suitable for testing the hazard awareness skills of all drivers.
How the test works
The hazard perception part is delivered on a computer and you respond by clicking a button on the mouse. You will be presented with a series of video clips which feature every day road scenes. In each clip there will be at least one developing hazard, but one of the clips will feature two developing hazards.
To achieve a high score you will need to respond to the developing hazard during the early part of its development. The maximum you can score on each hazard is five.
Recognition of available clues and perception of danger are skills that are necessary in all drivers and riders, irrespective of the vehicle used. For this reason, the same version of the hazard perception test is used for all categories of test.
An example of when to respond
As an example, of how to identify and respond to a developing hazard, consider a parked vehicle on the side of the road. When you first see it, it is not doing anything; it is just a parked vehicle. If you were to respond to the vehicle at this point, you would not score any marks, but you would not lose any marks.
However, when you get closer to the vehicle, you notice that the car’s right hand indicator starts to flash. The indicator would lead you to believe that the driver of the vehicle has an intention of moving away, therefore the hazard is now developing and a response at this point would score marks. The indicator coming on is a sign that the parked vehicle has changed its status from a potential hazard into a developing hazard.
When you get closer to the vehicle, you will probably see the vehicle start to move away from the side of the road; another response should be made at this point. Different clips in the test will have various signs to indicate that the hazard is changing its status and is now starting to develop.
How the test is scored
The maximum you can score for each developing hazard is five points. You should respond by pressing the mouse button as soon as you see a hazard developing that may result in you, the driver, having to take some action, such as changing speed or direction. The earlier you notice a developing hazard and make a response, the higher your score.
You will not be able to review your answers to the hazard perception test; as on the road, you will only have one chance to respond to the developing hazard, so you will need to concentrate throughout each clip.
If you react inappropriately during the video clip by clicking continuously or in a pattern of responses you will score zero for that clip. At the end of the clip a pop-up box will appear informing you that you have scored zero for that particular clip.
Are you ready to take your theory test?
If you and your instructor think you are ready and prepared to take your theory test try taking a sample theory test.Take a sample theory test