When you’re ready to take your theory test, book your test at a local test centre using the guide below. Remember, you must pass your theory test before you can take your practical test.
The car theory test costs £23: for full details of the theory test costs, visit GOV.UK.
Booking your theory test
It’s best to book your test using the official site, GOV.UK. If you use an unofficial site, you might pay more than you need to or you may not get a booking at all.
If you’ve used an unofficial booking website, you might have 7 working days to cancel your order and get all your money back but this will depend on the terms and conditions of the website you used.
If you have special needs, such as hearing or reading difficulties, you might be able to get extra help. Visit GOV.UK to find out about getting help with the theory test.
What happens on the day?
The multiple choice test
Before you start the multiple choice test, you can have a 15-minute practice session if you want to get used to the format of the test.
In the test, there are 50 questions and you’ll need to get at least 43 correct to pass. You’ll have 57 minutes for this part of the test.
The multiple choice questions appear on screen and you’ll use the mouse to choose the correct answer. For some questions, you’ll need to select more than one answer – there’ll be a message if you do not choose enough answers. There are also case study questions: these will show you a short ‘story’ and you’ll need to answer 5 questions about it.
If you are not sure about any of the questions, you can ‘flag’ them and come back to them later.
The hazard perception test
When you’ve finished the multiple choice part, you can go straight on to the hazard perception part or take a 3-minute break. You can watch a short video before you start the test, showing you how the test works.
You’ll need to click the mouse when you see a developing hazard (that is, something that would need you, the driver, to take some action such as changing speed or direction): the sooner you spot the hazard, the more points you’ll score. You can score up to 5 points for each hazard. You’ll need to score at least 44 out of 75 points. Each film shows one hazard apart from one film, which has two.
If you click the mouse too much or if you click in a pattern, you’ll be given a warning message and you’ll score no points for that film.
Getting your results
You’ll be given your results shortly after you’ve finished the theory test. If you pass, you’ll be given a letter with your pass certificate number on it. Make sure you keep this safe because you’ll need the number when you book your practical test.
Your theory test certificate is valid for 2 years. If you do not pass your practical test in that time, you’ll have to take the theory test again before you can take the practical test.
If you lose the letter, you can find a lost pass certificate number on GOV.UK.
If you do not pass the theory test, you’ll need to wait at least 3 working days before you can retake it. Use this time to do some more preparation.