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DMV Testing FAQs


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Whether you’re applying for your driver’s license for the first time, moving to a new state, or even renewing your license, the thought of taking the DMV tests can make anyone a little nervous!

Here are some of the most common questions we get about the DMV tests. Hopefully the answers will help you become more confident to pass your test.

But, if you need more help, we’ve got that too:

Is the permit test hard?

The permit test is hard if you fail to study and prepare for it. 

The written permit test is one of the first major steps towards getting your driver’s license. 

It’s based upon the information in your state’s driver handbook, which you’ll need to read and study before you take the test. 

Online practice tests and DMV cheat sheets like the free ones found at are a great way to supplement your handbook study and prepare for your written test. 

What percentage of people fail the permit test?

Depending on the state, the percentage of people who fail the permit test on their first try ranges from about 25% to 48%. 

How many people pass the permit test on their first try varies slightly from state to state. 

Some permit tests are slightly longer or have a higher passing score than others.  

What happens after you pass the permit test?

After you’ve passed your state’s written driver’s license test, you’ll be well on your way to your unrestricted driver’s license. Congratulations!

Once you finish the test, either the computer you took it on or the DMV examiner will give you your score. 

With a passing score, you’ll have officially received your learner’s permit.

In most cases you’ll receive a temporary learner’s permit (just a sheet of paper) to keep with you until your official document arrives in the mail. 

The learner’s permit allows you to operate a vehicle while supervised by a qualified, licensed adult. 

If you’re under 18 years old, you’ll now need to satisfy the learner’s permit requirements, which typically include:

  • Having the permit for a minimum amount of time (typically 6 months to 1 year).
  • Completing and logging the required supervised driving hours. 
  • Completing any required driver’s training with a professional driving instructor. 
  • Having no traffic violations. 

If you’re over 18, there is typically no minimum time limit or required supervised driving hours. You’ll just need to practice driving with your permit with a supervisor until you feel ready to take the road test.

What do you have to bring to your driver’s test?

Driver’s test requirements include:

  • Reaching the minimum age for a provisional license. 
  • Holding your permit for the required time limit. 
  • Completing the required supervised driving practice hours.

You’ll typically need to bring:

  • You valid learner’s permit document. 
  • Your driver’s license application.
  • Your signed supervised driving log sheet. 
  • Proof of completion of driver’s education and driver’s training, if applicable. 
  • Your parent or legal guardian if you’re under 18 years old, or your qualified supervisor if you’re over 18. 
  • A vehicle to take the test in. 
  • Any application and testing fees you need to pay. 

Plan to arrive at least 15 to 30 minutes before your test. 

What are the car requirements for the driving test?

Car requirements for the driving test include:

  • Current registration and insurance with properly displayed license plates. 
  • Working seats and seat belts for the driver and the examiner. 
  • Working headlights, tail lights, brake lights, and turn signal. 
  • Functioning windows.
  • Tires in safe condition. 
  • Working horn. 
  • Safe, working brakes, including the parking brake.
  • Unbroken, clean windshield and rear window.
  • Rearview mirror and side view mirror.
  • Working doors.
  • No mechanical issues. 
  • No emissions problems. 

If the car you bring for your road test is unsafe, you won’t be able to take the test. 

If you arrive at the DMV with your car by yourself, you will typically receive an automatic fail as well. You need to arrive with your supervising driver if you hold a learner’s permit.

What are some good DMV road test tips?

The best way to pass your DMV road test to be well prepared and totally focused on test day.

This means using the time with your learner’s permit to really master the driving techniques and safe driving habits you’ll need to demonstrate during your driving test. 

During your test, use these tips to help you pass:

  • Stay focused on the road and listen to the examiner.
  • Be comfortable with all the controls for your vehicle (brakes, accelerator, lights, signals, horn, etc.)
  • Know your hand signals. 
  • Make sure you are only doing what’s safe.
  • Don’t drive too fast or overly slow.
  • Accelerate and stop smoothly. 
  • Obey all traffic signals and signs.
  • Avoid following other vehicles too closely. 
  • Stay in the correct lanes during the test.
  • Check your mirrors and blind spots. 
  • Use your signals appropriately.

Learn more about passing the road test here!

What happens after you pass the road test?

After you finish the road test, the examiner will let you know whether you’ve passed or not, and the items you may have been marked down for. 

If you’ve passed, you’ll present your scorecard to the DMV clerk and they’ll update your records. 

After that you’ll receive a temporary license to keep until your official driver’s license arrives in the mail.

If you’re under 18 years old or are going through your state’s GDL process (graduated driver’s licensing), you’ll receive your provisional license.

The provisional license will allow you to drive by yourself, but will include some restrictions on which times of day you can drive and the passengers you’re permitted to drive with. 

After you’ve held your provisional license for the minimum amount of time or have reached a certain age, you’ll qualify for your standard driver’s license. These requirements vary slightly by state. 

If you don’t need to satisfy the GDL requirements, you’ll receive your standard, unrestricted driver’s license.

You can find the permit and license requirements for your state here.

We’ve also answered some common questions specific to each state. These questions include:

  • Are eye exams required?
  • Do you have to parallel park in the driving test?
  • Do you pay if you fail the permit test?
  • How do you schedule a DMV road test?
  • How long do you have to wait if you fail your driver’s test?
  • How long does it take to take the permit test?
  • How many mistakes can be made on the driver’s test?
  • How many questions are on the permit test?
  • Is the driver’s license test open book?
  • What are the road test requirements?
  • What happens if you fail your permit test?
  • Where can I get a driver’s manual?

Select your state below to find the answers specific to you!

Take the Permit Test Online, at Home: What you Need to Know

The knowledge test is one of the first major steps towards getting your driver’s license. 

You probably already know that you can take free DMV practice tests online at your state’s DMV website and here at, but did you know that you may be able to take the official exam online too? 

That’s right, many states have started rolling out an online knowledge exam. 

Find out which states offer this service and all the details you need to know below. 

Can you take the permit test online?

Being able to skip a trip to the DMV by completing your task online is always convenient. 

As technology improves, more and more state Department of Motor Vehicles have continued to add more online services

One of the most recent additions has been the ability to take your official permit test online, at home without having to visit the DMV. 

Like the expansions of other online services like driver’s license renewals and vehicle registration renewals, in some states online permit tests were offered in response to COVID-19

However, it’s likely that more and more states will continue to make this option available to new drivers. 

Currently, the follow states allow you to take your permit test online:

  • Arizona
  • California
  • Colorado
  • Massachusetts
  • New York
  • Ohio
  • Tennessee
  • Washington DC

If you live in one of those states and you’re getting your first driver’s license, you’re in luck!

Continue reading to learn all the details you need in order to take your official written exam online. 


If you are under 18 years old and applying for your first Arizona driver’s license, you’ll have the option of taking the permit test online, at home. 

In order to qualify, you’ll need to take the test under the supervision of your parent, legal guardian, or at a participating professional driving school. 

Here’s are the steps to take the permit test online in Arizona:

  1. The applicant’s parent must log into their AZ MVD account and verify their identity. 
  2. The parent enter’s their teen driver’s information. 
  3. Pay the $7 application and testing fee.
  4. The parent supervises their teen while they take the test. 

To get started, visit:

After passing the exam, you’ll need to:

  • Make an appointment at your local MVD office or visit an authorized 3rd party driver’s license provider.
  • Submit your completed application and supporting identification documents. 

Ace your test on your first try with our Arizona MVD practice test


Many drivers in California are now eligible to take the knowledge test online when applying for their first driver’s license or renewing their license. 

To see if you’re eligible, you’ll first need to complete your online driver’s license application at the following link: 

First time driver’s license applications may be eligible to take the CA knowledge exam online. 

Currently, the test is offered in 35 different languages. 

In order to be able to take the test, you’ll need:

  • A laptop or desktop computer with a functioning webcam. 
  • To take the exam between 8 am and 4 pm from Monday through Friday. 
  • To verify your identity before taking the test. 
  • To consent to be monitored via webcam while you take the test. 

If you go with the online option, you’ll have two chances to pass. If you fail the online test twice, you’ll need to visit the DMV to try again. 

Drivers who are renewing their license will also have the option to take their test online or complete an interactive eLearning course. 

Be sure to practice with our driver’s license renewal practice test.

The eLearning course provides an alternative to the written exam. It can be completed on a computer, phone, or tablet. It takes about 45 minutes to complete. 

This option is available at any time, but is currently only available in English.

Be sure to study with our free CA driver’s license practice test


As of July 2022, the CO DMV now offers the instruction permit test online. 

In order to take the test online, you’ll need:

If you are under 19 years old, someone who is 19 or older will be required to register you for the exam. 

The test takes about 60 minutes to complete, and is available in English and Spanish. 

You’ll be able to take the test as many times as needed to pass, but you can only take it twice in one day. 

Once completed, you’ll receive your scores instantly. 

The fees for each attempt are as follows:

  • First try: $6.50
  • Second and subsequent attempts: $17.65.

After you pass the test, you’ll need to make an appointment to visit your local DMV office in order to get your permit. 

For more details, visit: 

Take a Colorado DMV practice test today. 


After you submit your driver’s license application, you may be eligible to take your learner’s permit test online in Massachusetts. 

To get started, you’ll need to begin your application online at the following link: 

The exam will cover topics including:

  • Traffic laws. 
  • Road signs. 
  • DUI penalties. 
  • JOL violations. 

The online test includes 18 questions, and you’ll need to answer them within 25 minutes. 

Online tests cannot be paused once you start. 

Check out our MA driver’s license practice test

New York

Many new drivers in New York are eligible to take their permit test online. 

To get started, you’ll need to log onto the NY DMV website to create an account. 

After that, you’ll need to:

  • Begin your online application. 
  • Choose which type of permit you’re applying for. 
  • Upload the necessary identity documents and forms. 
  • Confirm your information. 

If eligible, the NY DMV will email you an online permit test link. 

You’ll need to open the link and start the test within 15 minutes. 

The test must be completed on a computer or tablet. 

After the test, you’ll need to visit your local DMV office to receive your learner’s permit. 

Use our free NY DMV permit test to help you study.


Ohio allows driver’s license applicants to take the knowledge test online as long as the following requirements are met:

  • You will have only 60 minutes to complete the exam. 
  • You cannot use any additional help or resources. 
  • You must verify your identity. 
  • You cannot leave your computer or move your mouse outside of the red border during the exam.
  • Your webcam must work. 

Cheating or failing to follow the test instructions will result in an automatic fail. 

Driver’s under 19 years old must be supervised by an adult while taking the online test. 

You can take the Ohio online knowledge test on a computer. It will not work on a phone or tablet. 

To get started, visit: 

Study with our Ohio BMV practice test.


New driver’s applying for their TN learner’s permit can take the knowledge test online using the Tennessee Proctor Identification App. 

In order to qualify for the online exam, you’ll need to:

  • Be between 15 and 17 years old. 
  • Download the TN PID application. 
  • Have a parent or legal guardian proctor the exam. 

You’ll have a maximum of 60 minutes to answer the 30 questions on the test, and you’ll need a score of 80% to pass.

For more information and to get started, visit: 

Use the Tennessee driver’s license practice test to help you ace your real exam. 

Washington DC

New drivers in the DC GDL program (ages 16 to 20 years old) can schedule an appointment to take the knowledge test virtually. 

To schedule your appointment visit: 

You’ll have 75 minutes to answer all of the questions. 

After you take the test, you’ll receive your result immediately.

You’ll then need to visit your local DMV service center within 14 business days to submit the necessary documents and get your permit.

Check out the DC DMV permit practice test

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