Up to recently, the only way to prepare for the Driver Theory Test in Ireland was to get your hands on the official book or CD-ROM that accompany the test.

But if you’re thinking that maybe now is the right time to start learning to drive, there’s a new way to prepare for the Driver Theory Test that will save you having to root out that book your brother used circa 2006 or the CD-ROM your friend keeps promising you.

It’s an online training facility called Go.Drive, produced by Prometric in conjunction with the Road Safety Authority (RSA). Go.Drive is the first official learning and practicing product specifically designed for the RSA Official Driver Theory Test so it’s fully accredited and current.

Go.Drive contacted me a while ago to see if I would trial run (road test!) their new driver theory test online training support. I agreed because a) I thought it might be useful to anyone thinking about applying for the theory test and b) It would be a chance to regress and see how I would fare when faced with the driver theory test questions second time round.

How Does It Work?

Go.Drive is a subscription based product and because it’s currently in pilot, subscription is just €1.99 a month. You can pause your subscription at any time so you’re not paying month after month if you’re not using it. To put this in perspective, the official CD-ROM retails around €22 and the book retails at about €18.

You just need Internet access and then Go.Drive is always there for you when you log in.  Registering is easy and access is instant. Go.Drive follows the same question and answer format as the book and CD-ROM, and offers knowledge tests on each topic.

When you sign in, you land on the Go.Drive dashboard, which is modern, colourful and easy to navigate. There are a few modules in development and the long term plan is to help new drivers as they progress from driver theory test to taking the practical test, and then navigating the roads as a novice driver for the first two years after passing their test.

The Theory Test Module

For the moment new users will be heading straight for the Theory Test module. The system is in pilot but the important stuff is all there. This section covers all the official questions and answers that will be asked in your Official Driver Theory Test. It’s divided up into 16 sections, which you can study and review at your leisure, including Road Signs, Overtaking and Driving in Hazardous Conditions, and Alert Driving and Consideration for Other Road Users.

Each category is then divided into more specific sub-categories. When you’ve reviewed all the theory in question and answer format you can complete a ‘Knowledge check’, which gives you a go at answering some sample theory test questions. If you get it right you move straight to the next question; get it wrong and you’re shown the correct answer with an explanation as to why.

If you wish to really test yourself in a more ‘real-life’ scenario you can purchase Official Driver Theory practice tests within the application, for example 3 for €3.99. Just like the Official Driver Theory Test, each practice test consists of 40 questions taken from the Official Driver Theory Test question bank, with 40 minutes to complete the test.

Each time you complete a practice test it will be recorded, so your progress can be analysed. Go.Drive suggests that you continue to take the practice tests until you are consistently scoring 86% (Official Driver Theory Test pass mark) and above.

More Features

There are some other handy features to Go.Drive, like the facility to apply for the Driver Theory Test through the application and a FAQs section with useful  information about Go.Drive and the Driver Theory Test. There’s also an email sign-up for sponsors. A ‘sponsor’ is an experienced driver who accompanies you during your practice driving sessions. Research has shown that a sponsor has a significant positive impact on the success of the learner driver and by signing up, Go.Drive will tell them what they need to do to support the learner driver on their journey.

Go.Drive is changing the way learner drivers prepare for their theory test with a modern, on-demand, mobile approach to learning away from books and CD-ROMs, that can be accessed anywhere, from different devices! If you want to try out Go.Drive yourself you can sign up here.

Caroline Kidd