Online training and exam trial for Queensland learner drivers
THE multiple choice test for learner drivers is facing its biggest shake-up in four decades, with an online training module and exam being trialled to replace the test as early as next year.
More than 30 per cent of people taking the written learner test in Queensland have failed this year.
Experts say teens simply aren’t interested in studying a book and would benefit from the proposal to take the test electronically.
Unlike the traditional 30-question multiple choice test, the proposed online program, PrepL, involves an intensive learning module with students having to complete more than 380 questions, challenges and activities in order to pass.
The software was developed by Brisbane technology company Croomo in conjunction with the State Government.
The company’s chief growth officer, Daniel Bermingham, said the course was already being trialled in six Queensland schools.
“Students don’t just learn the road rules with PrepL, they learn why it’s important to have the right attitude and, in a virtual environment, they experience the consequences of poor driving,” he said.
“The current system is archaic. Instead of the traditional testing environment (PrepL) is now educating them too.
“Young people are very comfortable with technology and we believe they will enjoy the PrepL experience, while gaining valuable knowledge.”
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Wow Driving School owner Maya Jansen said driving students would benefit from an overhaul of the system.
“The basic knowledge is not there for a lot of learner drivers,” she said.
“A lot of them don’t prepare, they just go in (to the test) and think they can wing it.”
T2 Driving School owner Rob Moore said better educating driving students could help combat the road toll.
“Any sort of digital interface is probably going to engage them for longer than that old fashioned rules book which is like the New Testament,” he said.
“It’d put you to sleep in the first one to two minutes, so anything that’s a bit more engaging will be heaps better for the kids of today.”
Seventeen-year-old Emily Mark will take her provisional driving test in two weeks and said she found the written learner test quite simple.
“I think it would be a great idea to have the online (test),” she said.
“Right now all I have is basic knowledge, so I think that would help not just passing the test but learning the road rules properly.”
Amit Levin, 17, is almost ready to take his final driving test and said he would prefer to learn through an interactive online learning module.
“I think that would be a really good way to learn and you’d be learning it more than just memorising it,” he said.
“That’s something I think most of us would prefer.”