Instructional ability test: preparation and booking

The third part of the test to qualify as a heavy goods vehicle (HGV) instructor is designed to test your ability to instruct pupils to drive. It’s the final test before you can become an instructor.

You must pass the driving ability test before you can book the instructional ability test.

You’ll need to take your instructional ability test within one year of passing your theory test – otherwise your theory test pass certificate will expire.

See GOV.UK for a guide to the instructional ability test.

The instructional ability test costs £142.80: for full details of the HGV instructor test costs, visit GOV.UK.

Preparing for your test

You can use the nine pre-set exercises to help you prepare (GOV.UK): your examiner will use one of these exercises in your test.

Booking your test

Use the form you’re given when you pass your driving ability test to book your instructional ability test.

You can find your nearest test centre at GOV.UK.

You can also use GOV.UK if you need to change the test date or centre or cancel your test.

What happens on the day of the test?

The examiner will take the role of a pupil and simulate driving faults. You’ll need to

  • tailor your instruction to the standard of the pupil and the time available
  • give your pupil a chance to demonstrate what you have taught them and correct any faults
  • keep control of the lesson, be patient and tactful, and encourage the pupil.

This DVSA video shows what happens at the approved driving instructor test. The format for the HGV instructor test is similar.

If you pass

Congratulations! Your name will be added to the HGV instructor register when you pay the registration fee. You’ll be sent a registration certificate, which lasts for 4 years.

You’ll need to display your certificate in the bottom left-hand corner of the front windscreen of the vehicle when you’re teaching someone to drive.

You’ll need to retake and pass the driving ability test and instructional ability test during the last 12 months of your registration to stay on the register.

If you fail

You can take the test again if you fail it at your first or second attempt. If you fail the test a third time, you’ll have to retake and pass the theory test before you can retake the driving ability test and the instructional ability test again. You’ll have to wait one year from when you first passed the theory test before you can take it again.

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