The DVSA ADI Standards Check Test

What is a DVSA ADI standards check?

The Driver & Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) Approved Driving Instructor (ADI) standards check (SC) is given to those who've already passed the DVSA ADI part 3 test.

If you've already passed your DVSA ADI part 3 test and wish to remain on the DVSA ADI register, you must take and pass a DVSA ADI standards check when requested to do so by the DVSA.

You will be required to take an ADI standards check, even if you don’t have a car or aren’t working as a driving instructor; if you wish to remain on the DVSA ADI register.

What is the purpose of the ADI standards check?

The purpose of the ADI standards check is to check that ADIs are still teaching according the national standards for driver and rider training.

How often do I have to take an ADI standards check?

The DVSA announced on the 20/08/2021 a change in the way they're going to prioritize the ADI standards check.

In a nutshell, they'll analyse your pupils driving test data (example data) in order to identify any areas of weakness in your teaching. The DVSA have created trigger points and if you trigger 3 or more out of the 4 trigger points in a 12 month period, you'll be requested to take an ADI standards check. Read more...

If you bring fewer than 5 pupils up for test or you do not teach learners, you will have an ADI standards check test every 4 years.

If you're ORDIT registered, your ORDIT assessment every 4 years will supersede the ADI standards check.

How will I know when I've got an ADI standards check?

A DVSA ADI examiner will call you to arrange a date and time for a 30-minute phone appointment. This appointment is volutary, and will take place about 8 weeks before your standards check. Once the appointment is confirmed, the examiner will email you a copy of your 'ADI driver test analysis report' in PDF format; this gives information about the different indicators.

If you refuse the phone appointment, you will not be sent your ADI driver test analysis report. You will still need to take your standards check, but the DVSA will not contact you again to offer support.

Can you request a copy of your ADI driver test analysis report?

You sure can! You'll need to email your: ADI personal reference number (PRN), date of birth and postcode to: adi.enforcement.analysis.request@dvsa.gov.uk

How many attempts at the ADI standards check do I get?

Much like the ADI part 3 test, you'll only get 3 attempts at the ADI standards check. Failure on the third attempt will result in removal from the approved driving instructor register.

Do I have to pay for an ADI standards check?

If it's your DVSA ADI part 3 test, there's a test fee of £111. However, if it's your continued ability to instruct aka standards check or check test, the fee is covered by your approved driving instructor (ADI) certificate aka green badge and registration which is £300 every 4 years.

Which languages can be used for the ADI standards check?

You can only take the ADI standards check in English or Welsh languages.

How long does the ADI standards check take?

The ADI standards check takes around 1 hour. You'll need to allow 10 minutes for the DVSA ADI examiner to discuss the result with you at the end of the test, so it's actually only around 50 minutes!

Can I do a standards check in an automatic car?

If you have a manual driving licence, you can do a standards check in a manual or automatic car; you'll be able to teach both manual and automatic.

If you have an automatic driving licence, you can only do a standards check in an automatic car; you'll be able to teach automatic only.

In a nutshell, you can only teach what you're qualfied to drive!

How is my teaching standard assessed?

You will need to take a 'reliable and responsive' pupil with you for your ADI standards check. The examiner will sit in the back of the car and assess you giving a normal driving lesson.

Note: Many driving instructors are failing their standards check or getting a grade B, not necessarily because their teaching technique is inadequate, but because their teaching technique does not meet 'the ADI standards check criteria'. If your 'normal driving lessons' do not meet the ADI standards check criteria, you should seek ADI remedial training before sitting your ADI standards check.

Standards Check Form SC1 - Example

What if I don't have a pupil?

The DVSA estimate that 58% of driving instructors are using a real pupil and the other 42% are using a friend or family member for the ADI standards check test. Even if you have a real pupil, it's always a good idea to have a reliable plan B.

What is the grading system for the DVSA ADI standards check?

The DVSA ADI standards check is divided into three main categories and seventeen sub categories. In order to pass the DVSA ADI standards check, you'll need to score enough points in all three categories. How many points you get, will define whether or not you've passed and your grade.

There are two pass grades for the DVSA ADI standards check; Grade A & Grade B.

How many points do I need to get a grade A on my ADI standards check?

In order to get a 'Grade A' on your approved driving instructor (ADI) standards check, you must score between 43-51 points (85%-100%).

How many points do I need to get a grade B on my ADI standards check?

To get a 'Grade B' on your approved driving instructor (ADI) standards check, you must score between 31-42 points (61%-84%).

Can I request a standards check to show that I have improved?

You sure can! You'll need to email your: ADI personal reference number (PRN), date of birth, postcode, and the reason you need to take a standards check to padi@dvsa.gov.uk

IMPORTANT UPDATE (18/07/19): The Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) has said that Approved Driving Instructors (ADIs) can apply for a second attempt at their ADI Standards Check if they have a reasonable case.

Up until now, there hasn't been an option for Approved Driving Instructors to have a second try at their ADI Standards Check simply to improve their grade. However, with recent improvements to the booking process and increased capacity to deliver more ADI Standards Checks, it might now be possible. If sickness or other issues on the day of the ADI Standards Check, or in the lead up, resulted in a poorer grade than desired, Approved Driving Instructors can apply for another attempt. ADIs who wish to apply for a second ADI Standards Check, should write to the Approved Driving Instructor (ADI) Registrar’s team detailing their reasons for seeking another attempt.

Consideration will also be given to those who are required to get a Grade A for training or wider road safety roles (such as Road Safety Officers, NDORS, Fleet Trainers and new applicants to the ORDIT Register.

It is important to note that whatever result achieved on that second standards check, that is the grading that will stand – you cannot choose to revert back to a previous grade achieved on the first attempt.

We encourage all Approved Driving Instructors (ADIs), regardless of whether it is your first or second attempt at the standards check, to talk to our Official Register of Driving Instructor Training (ORDIT) team about ADI remedial training and development in preparation for your next Approved Driving Instructor (ADI) standards check (SC).

What would result in failing the ADI standards check?

You will fail the ADI standards check if you:

  • Score less than 31 points (0%-60%)
  • Score 7 or less points in 'risk management' even if you have enough overall points
  • You behave in a way which puts you, the pupil, or any third party in immediate danger

If you fail you'll be given another ADI standards check within 12 weeks. Much like the ADI part 3 test, you'll only get 3 attempts at the ADI standards check test. Failure on the third attempt will result in removal from the Approved Driving Instructor (ADI) register.

How does the ADI standards check points system work?

You will be scored 0-3 points on each sub category. How much you score is based on whether or not you cover the sub category and the standard in which they're covered. The scores from the sub categories will be added up to create a score for their three main categories. The points from these three main categories are added together creating your total score.

Competence standards examples

An ADI who makes no attempt to understand their pupil’s needs would be demonstrating no evidence of competence and be marked 0.

An ADI who makes an attempt, asks a few questions, but doesn’t really listen and then goes ahead and does what they intended to do regardless, would be demonstrating a few elements of competence and would be marked 1.

An ADI who grasps the importance of understanding the pupil’s needs and makes a real effort to do so, but who finds it difficult to frame suitable questions, would be demonstrating competence in most elements and would be marked 2.

An ADI who grasps the importance of understanding the pupil's needs and makes a real effort to do so, and finds it easy to frame suitable questions, would be demonstrating competence in all elements and would be marked 3.

  • No evidence = 0
  • Demonstrated in a few elements = 1
  • Demonstrated in most elements = 2
  • Demonstrated in all element = 3

What are the three main categories?

  1. Lesson planning
  2. Risk management
  3. Teaching & learning strategies

What is lesson planning?

Lesson planning is about identifying the learning goals and needs of the pupil. Once you have identified the learning goals and needs of the pupil, you agree on a lesson plan which helps them work towards their learning goals and needs. Now that you have agreed with the pupil on the lesson plan, you must select an appropriate lesson route and be prepared, if appropriate, to adapt the lesson plan and/or route to help them achieve their learning goals and needs.

The four sub categories are:

  1. Identifying the pupil's learning goals and needs
  2. Agreeing an appropriate lesson plan with the pupil
  3. Choosing a suitable lesson route
  4. Adapting the lesson plan when appropriate

Maximum points: 12

What is risk management?

Risk management is about helping the pupil to understand how the risk is shared between themselves and you the driving instructor. Any instructions given should be clear and in good time so that the pupil has time to safely act on what you're saying. As a driving instructor you should be fully aware of the surroundings, the actions of the pupil and of other road users. Any verbal or physical interventions must be timely and appropriate for the circumstances, and an explanation should be given for the intervention. You should give feedback where appropriate in order to help the pupil understand any safety critical incidents.

The five sub categories are:

  1. Understanding how the responsibility for risk is be shared
  2. Clarity and timing of directions and instructions
  3. Awareness of the surroundings and the pupil’s actions
  4. Verbal and physical intervention timely and appropriate
  5. Feedback given on potential safety critical incidents

Maximum points: 15

Getting 7 or less points in this category will result in failure!

What is teaching & learning strategies?

Teaching and learning strategies is about matching the teaching style and level to the needs and ability of the pupil. You should use the Q&A technique where appropriate to help the pupil analyse any driver errors and encourage them to take responsibility for their learning. Where possible, you should use opportunities or examples to clarify outcomes with the pupil. Any technical information given should be comprehensive, appropriate and accurate at a level the pupil will understand. You should give appropriate and timely feedback to the pupil throughout the lesson in order to help them with their learning goals and needs. When asked, answer the pupils questions correctly and in a timely manner. You must be non-discriminatory towards the pupil at all times during the lesson. At the end of the lesson you should get the pupil to reflect back on the lesson by asking them how they feel they had performed during the lesson and discuss future goals and needs.

The eight sub categories are:

  1. Matching the teaching style to the pupil’s learning style and ability
  2. Encouraging the pupil to analyse problems and take responsibility for their learning
  3. Using opportunities and examples to clarify learning outcomes
  4. Giving technical information comprehensively, appropriately and accurately
  5. Giving appropriate and timely feedback throughout the lesson
  6. Following up and answering any pupil queries
  7. Maintaining a non-discriminatory manner throughout the lesson
  8. Reflective recap of the pupils performance and setting goals

Maximum points: 24

Standards Check Form SC1 - Example

ARE YOU DUE FOR A STANDARDS CHECK?

Our DVSA ORDIT team can help prepare you for your ADI standards check test!

STANDARDS CHECK TRAINING