How does the Examiner decide my grade?
Gold is only awarded to the driver who shows a consistently high standard of driving throughout the test. The driver will demonstrate a confidence in their ability together with a thorough understanding of the principles contained in Roadcraft and how to apply those principles to situations that occur during the test. They will drive in a calm controlled manner, without fuss or flourish. It is important to realise that this is the result of a conscious decision making process and not just an automatic application of a set of ‘rules’. The Gold standard driver will consistently demonstrate good observations together with consideration for, and sound assessment of, other road users and situations, being courteous yet taking control as appropriate. In obtaining this grade the candidate will have consistently made safe, legal, smooth, planned progress within the vehicle’s capabilities whilst giving passengers and other road users the impression of being completely calm and relaxed. To assist with demonstrating this the driver may be required to give a verbal commentary at some point during the drive.
Silver is awarded to candidates who display a skill level well above the average. They will show a thorough understanding of the principles contained in Roadcraft and how to apply those principles to situations that occur during the test. The driver will make safe systematic progress however not demonstrating the consistency, final polish and smoothness of the Gold grade candidate. The System will still be applied in a thoughtful and considered manner for all situations and it must be stressed that this is a very high standard and those who obtain a Silver grade are to be congratulated.
A Bronze grade will be awarded to those candidates who show that they have an understanding of, and the ability to apply, the principles of advanced driving, demonstrating a good level of observation and anticipation, but not doing so consistently throughout the test. They will however drive in a safe and legal manner, to a standard which is significantly above that required to pass the appropriate DVSA test.
Candidates who do not reach the Bronze standard will fail the test. Reasons for a fail could include but are not limited to:
- The candidate’s overall standard is just not up to the requirements
- A dangerous manoeuvre
- Repeatedly exceeding speed limits or a significant infringement of a speed limit (either signed or applicable to the category of vehicle they are using)
- Violation of Road Traffic Law (contravening solid white lines, stop lines, red traffic lights, speed limits etc), or the rules in the Highway Code.
- A minor infringement for which the candidate can give good reason should not generally result in failure but could contribute to a lower grade being awarded.
Should a candidate fail the Examiner will offer advice on the areas that require improvement and encourage the candidate to obtain further guidance from a local RoADAR group. The candidate can apply to take the test again as soon as they wish, however we would advise taking some additional training before doing so. An Examiner’s decision on the grade achieved is final.
If a candidate achieves a Bronze or Silver pass they may apply to take a retest (for which a fee is payable) before the three year re-test becomes due. If you do wish to improve your standard we would strongly recommend that you join a local group where you will meet like minded people. In any case when your three year re-test is due we will make contact to remind you. You will need to take your test within a reasonable time of the due date in order to keep your membership current.
The hallmark of an Advanced Drivers is to always be in the correct place on the road, travelling at the right speed for the circumstances and with the correct gear engaged.
It is that simple.