Study Hall

We have compiled the best study material, and our years of Driver Education experience to help new drivers of all ages pass the written test.

Important:This is not intended to replace Driver Education.  If you are between the ages of 15 – 17 1/2, click here to enroll in On-line Driver Education.

Finding the Answers to Every Question

The test is based on the California Driver Handbook.  The answer to every question is in the book.  Every student should read the book at least once before taking the written test.

You can download the current edition of the Handbook by clicking here!

Note: You can also pick-up a copy of the Handbook at the local DMV or at our office.

Tip For Teens: The table of contents has green highlighting on the sections that contain information specific to teen drivers.  Spend a little extra time with these sections.

Videos from the DMV to Help You Study

The California DMV has produced many videos to help new drivers understand driving rules and regulations. We’ve included some of the best below:

California Driver License
Helps new drivers understand the requirements and responsibilities of obtaining and keeping a license to drive. It covers the application process, restrictions for provisional drivers, the behind the wheel test, insurance requirements, actions that can be taken against provisional drivers and driving under the influence.

Rules of Roads
Helps remind drivers about the requirements and responsibilities of being a safe driver. It covers lane markings, road signs, speed limits, intersection rules, lane changes, turns, rights-of-way, parking, passing and much more.

Sharing the Road
Helps remind drivers about the requirements and responsibilities of being a safe driver. It covers cooperative driving, risk management, blind spots, pedestrians, bicycles, motorcycles, light-rail vehicles, accidents, vehicle maintenance and driving in inclement weather.

Top 10 Reasons for Failing the Drive Test
Recounts the most common mistakes prospective drivers make during their behind-the-wheel exams. The lessons include being too cautious, poor scanning, lack of experience, improper speed, illegal turns, failure to stop, failure to yield, and unsafe lane changes.

Test Strategy

The written test is all multiple choice questions.  Each question has 3 choices, with only one correct answer.  Here is a typical test question:

1.  Roads are slippery after it first starts to rain.  When the road is slippery you should:

a.  Avoid making fast turns and fast stops.

b.  Test your tires’ traction while going uphill

c.  Decrease the distance you look ahead of your vehicle.

The best strategy for passing the test is to read every question carefully.  A change to a single word can make the answer completely different.  The test does not have a time limit, so work through each question with care.

Use the Process of Elimination
You can generally eliminate one of the possible answers very quickly.  The key here is to look for the answer that appears to be off-topic.  In the above question the obvious wrong answer is:

b. Test your tires’ traction while going uphill.

Now, why would anyone test tire traction in the rain on a public roadway? ;)

If it sounds wrong, it probably is wrong.  This strategy increases your chances of getting the answer right by 50%!

Now Analyze the Remaining Choices:
Alright, let’s look at the question again with the obvious wrong answer eliminated:

1.  Roads are slippery after it first starts to rain.  When the road is slippery you should:

a.  Avoid making fast turns and fast stops.

b.  Test your tires’ traction while going uphill

c.  Decrease the distance you look ahead of your vehicle.

If your reading carefully,  you can now elmimate another choice.  Which one?

c.  Decrease the distance you look ahead of your vehicle.

The California Driver Handbook places a huge emphasis on looking ahead as far as possible when driving.  Decreasing this distance is never a good plan.

Now that we’ve got 2 choices eliminated the correct choice should be clear.  Let’s look:

1.  Roads are slippery after it first starts to rain.  When the road is slippery you should:

a.  Avoid making fast turns and fast stops.

b.  Test your tires’ traction while going uphill.

c.  Decrease the distance you look ahead of your vehicle.

Looks good! YAY! :D

Here is another question.  See if you can spot the obvious wrong answer:

2.  Always use your seat belt:

a.  Unless the vehicle was built before 1978.

b.  Unless you are in a limousine.

c.  When the vehicle is equipped with seat belts.

Practice Tests

The DMV website has 5 practice test to help new drivers study, available at the links below.

Test #1

Test #2

Test #3

Test #4

Test #5

GMAC Insurance also has an excellent test that covers driving knowledge available here:

GMAC National Driver Test

Studying the Test of a Friend or Relative

If you know someone who has recently taken the written test it can be very helpful to use it as a study guide.  Make sure that the test you are looking at is for the same type and class of license that you are applying for.

Note: The DMV uses multiple versions of the written test.  Study your friend or relatives test,  do not attempt to memorize it as it is unlikely that you will receive the same version.

Alternatives to the Written Test

If the idea of a written test terrifies you,  you may take an alternative audio cassette test.  The questions will be the same as the written test,  except that a recording will read the questions to you.

You also have the option of taking a face-to-face exam administered by a DMV technician.  If you choose this route you must schedule an appointment in advance.

Note: Appointments for a face-to-face test should be made by visiting your local DMV.  The on-line appointment system cannot handle this type of request.