Driving instructors instruct new teen drivers, train commercial truck and bus drivers, assist race car drivers with competition preparation, and provide refresher courses for senior drivers. Driving instructor training, like work environments, varies greatly depending on the area of instruction one wishes to pursue. Training and education can take anywhere from a few weeks to a few years for those who want to work for a private driving school or teach at a high school.
Many states require new drivers to complete driver’s education, with a certain number of hours behind the wheel and in the classroom required before taking the driving test. Even in states where formal training is not required, many new drivers choose it because insurance companies may offer lower rates to those who complete professional-led training. Future new teen driver instructors must decide whether to teach in a high school or at a private driving school.
In addition to the training that private driving school instructors receive, those interested in a career as a high school driving instructor will need a bachelor’s degree and a teaching credential. Driving instructor training is included with a teaching license at some universities, but it can also be obtained through a private driving school or a community college program. To work as a paid driving instructor, you’ll need a driving instructor license, and each state has its own requirements for how many hours of driving instructor training you’ll need before you can get one.
Driving instructor training for passenger vehicle drivers is frequently done at the same school as new driver training. In fact, it is common for a driving instructor to first secure employment at a licensed private driving school, then complete the school’s training program before becoming licensed. Race car driving schools, truck driving schools, and schools for those who will operate public transportation vehicles all have different programs, so the best way to find out about driving instructor training and requirements for hire is to call.
Whatever type of driving instructor training is desired, there are some basic requirements that must be met before a training program can begin in each state. Instructors must be 21 years old, have a clean driving record, and have never been convicted of a felony. They must also have held a driver’s license for a specified period of time, which varies state.