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Driver Training for Three Exam Failures

Driver's license applicants who fail the knowledge exam or road skills test three times must successfully complete the applicable knowledge or in-vehicle component of a driver education course before they can take the examination a fourth time. Classes taken at a driver improvement clinic do not meet this requirement.

If you are applying for a commercial driver's license (CDL) and have failed the knowledge exam or road skills test three times, refer to CDL Driver Training Schools (Including Three-Time Failures)

Failing the Knowledge Test

If you have failed the knowledge test three times and are age 18 or over, you must either retake the classroom component of driver education (consisting of 36 50-minute classroom sessions) or complete an 8-hour Driver's Manual course.

The Driver's Manual course is an 8-hour course based on the Virginia driver's manual and is designed to better prepare individuals for the knowledge test. The completion date of the driver's manual course must be after the date of your third knowledge test failure. When you have successfully completed either the classroom component of driver education or the Driver's Manual course and have provided DMV with your certificate of completion, you can retake the knowledge exam.

To find a list of schools offering the Driver's Manual course, see Driver's Manual Course Training Sites.

If you have failed the knowledge test three times and are under age 18, you must retake the classroom component of driver education. If you wish to take the Driver's Manual course, you must provide proof of having completed the classroom component of driver education before you are allowed to enroll in the Driver's Manual course.

Failing the Road Skills Test

If you have failed the road test three times, you must re-take the behind-the-wheel component of driver education. This component consists of 14 fifty-minute periods of in-car instruction (7 periods of driving and 7 periods of observation, including the final road skills examination)

Find a Driver Training School

To locate the driver training school that is closest to you, refer to Driver Training Schools (Three Exam Failures) by District.

Additional Information

DMV is committed to promoting transportation safety through the certification of quality driver training programs.

For information about the laws governing driver training schools, refer to the Virginia Driver Training School Regulations.

If you have comments or concerns about this course, call our toll-free number: 1-877-885-5790.