Driving Test Marking System...

Driving Test Marking System - Info & Advice

Pupils are often confused by the driving test marking system

Often we'll hear them ask why their friend failed with 3 minors marks. However, if you can get an explanation of the whole story, you realise that the same mistake was made 3 times by the candidate that lead to a fail.

Test Examiners are aware of how daunting the driving test can be, so they are more likely to give the benefit of the doubt for minor mistakes at the beginning of the test when candidates are generally more nervous.

However, this does means the Examiner will be watching closely for the same mistakes as the driving test progresses.

Driving Test Marking System

Driving Test Marking System

How is the Driving Test marked?

The marking system for the Driving Test Report is very simple. The candidate can receive marks for 3 types of fault:

  1. Minor

  2. Serious

  3. Dangerous

Minor Faults

A test candidate is allowed 15 minor faults across DIFFERENT test catagories. If the test candidate picks up over 15 faults, the driving test is a fail.

Minor fault examples:

  1. Answering a Show Me Tell Me question incorrectly

  2. Missing one of the mirrors during a mirror check

  3. Stalling the vehicle

  4. Selecting the wrong gear

However, a build up of minor faults in the SAME catagory becomes a serious fault, which is also a fail. Therefore it's possible to fail on less than 15 minor faults. In fact, a minor fault may only need to occur 2 or 3 times for the mark to become serious.

  1. Example:

    Whilst checking around the vehicle before moving off, the candidate misses one of the mirrors. The Examiner might mark down 1 minor fault for this.

    However, as the driving test progresses, the Examiner notices the same mirror is being missed each time they move off. The Examiner begins to mark it each time because it's now clear it wasn't a one-off mistake due to nerves.

    Eventually, the minor fault is elevated to a serious fault - a fail.

Serious Fault

If the test candidate receives 1 serious fault, the driving test is a fail. However, the driving test will continue, which means it's possible for a candidate to pick up more than 1 serious fault during the test.

A serious fault can depend on what is happening at the time

  1. Example:

    If a candidate moves off in a quiet road without checking the centre mirror, but there are no vehicles around, it could mean the Examiner marks it as a minor fault.

    In the instance of a minor mark being awarded. The Examiner will repeat the cirsumstances somewhere else during the test so they can see if it was a one-off mistake, in this case, by asking the candidate to pull over and move off again.

    If a candidate makes this mistake on a busier road, it could be marked as a serious fault because of the possible consequences of the error being repeated.

Serious fault examples

  1. Changing lane without indicating

  2. Inadaquate observation

  3. Cutting across the road when turning right

  4. Coasting into a side road

Dangerous Faults

If the test candidate receives 1 dangerous fault, the driving test is a fail. Depending how dangerous the event is, a driving test can be aborted.

A Dangerous Fault can be given for the same mistake as a Serious Fault, it becomes dangerous when it's a real life scenario

  1. Example:

    When turning right into a side road, although easily avoidable, a candidate cuts across the wrong side of the road. However, there are no vehicles approaching in this instance, so the Examiner awards a Serious Fault because of the potential consequences of the mistake being repeated.

    A candidate cuts across the wrong side of the road when another vehicle is approaching to emerge. Because the fault happened in real life, the Examiner will award a Dangerous Fault. In some cases the Examiner may intervene e.g. take control of the steering, apply the brakes (in a car with dual controls).

Dangerous fault examples

  1. Changing lane without indicating

  2. Inadaquate observation

  3. Cutting across the road when turning right

  4. Coasting into a side road