Just like any learning activity, driving can now be learned online. While a big part of driving requires plenty of hours of actual on-road practice, you can definitely learn the theoretical aspects of driving online. You can learn the concepts behind driving, parts of the car, shifting (if you intend to drive manual transmission), and most importantly, road rules and regulations.
Depending on your state, the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) usually requires a certain number of hours for driver's education, and whether or not you can learn how to drive online. Online learning sites take note of these. If you are really bent on learning to drive online, you can visit a few web sites for the novice driver. These mostly involve the theoretical aspects of driving, as well as rules that you should keep in mind, depending on where you live.
The Online Course - Websites like TrafficSchool.com, and its affiliate driverseddirect.com, offer online courses in driver's education. The first thing these sites will ask you is which state you live in and what your ZIP code is to make sure your state's DMV approves of online driving courses. Once your state is confirmed to be eligible for online driver's ed, you will be asked to pay the nominal fee for the course.
The online driving course will usually include these theoretical parts of lessons normally taught in the classroom:
- Parts of the car
- Automotive troubleshooting
- Road signs
- Road safety and courtesy
The required number of hours varies per state. California, for instance, requires 30 hours of classroom training.
Simulations - Most online driving courses will feature simulation driving sessions, which are run right from your browser as interactive flash animations. Of course, this isn't the real thing, but it gives you an idea of what an actual driving test would feel like.
Mock Exams - Once you complete the course and the simulations, you can take mock exams that simulate the actual written test given by the DMV. Most online driving courses let you take the exam an unlimited number of times, to make sure you get things right. The mock exams closely approximate the actual theoretical exam that the DMV will give you, and these will include road signs, rules of the road, road courtesy, and basic vehicle maintenance.
The Certificate - Upon completion of the required classroom hours, the online driving school will then issue a certificate and have this mailed or sent by courier to your address. You can show this certificate to the DMV office where you intend to take your actual exams. If the online course you've attended is accredited by the DMV, they will accept this as proof that you have undergone driving education, and will proceed to let you take the written and practical tests.
Just like any online educational course or program, studying driving online requires discipline and commitment. And the hard part isn't even finished when you go through the online theoretical exam. You still need to pass the driving exam. The best way to practice this is, of course, actual driving lessons.