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#1 Tuesday 11th September 2018 20:26:03

joshtADI
Verified Member
Registered: Tuesday 11th September 2018
Posts: 3

Sitting in on Tests

Hi All

I'm new here so bear with me !

Just wanted your guys opinion on something.
I've been an ADI for nearly 6 months now, I was a PDI for 6 months before that so approaching a year of this job - absolutely loving it I must say.

I've sat in on lots of driving tests during this time. Today I sat in on a test, at the end of the test after the Examiner delivered the outcome, he asked me if he "could have a word outside the car".

So we got out of the car and he said to me "has anyone told you about head movement during tests"? I was a bit confused so acted totally (and genuinely) dumb. He went on to say that he noticed I was checking blind spots and looking all around etc (Just in my instructor mode!) during the test, and that this could be seen as me cheating and prompting the pupil to do the same. He also said he noticed lots of "eye movements" too. He told me that there "is absolutely no need" for this and that he does all relevant checks.

I didn't do anything different on this test to what I normally do. Just as when I'm teaching I always "mirror" the pupil (i.e check blind spot AFTER them) so I don't see how this would be giving away any information. And is it not obvious I want to look all around, that's what I'm there for, to deliver my opinion on how the drive went to my pupil afterwards. If I don't look around or check blindspots, how could I identify and feed back faults that might occur during these times?

The Debrief from the examiners is always so rubbish that unless I pay close attention to what is going on (which obviously involves looking around) then I'd have no clue where the faults where made or what to discuss with my pupil, especially if they have been unsuccessful. I enjoy sitting in on tests and have never had this feedback before, it has left me feeling very deflated and confused as to what the examiner expects an observer to do. What's the point of me observing a test if I just stare at my feet for the whole time?

Would appreciate some fellow ADI's opinions on this! neutral

Josh

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Tuesday 11th September 2018 20:26:03

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Re: Sitting in on Tests



#2 Tuesday 11th September 2018 23:31:58

Joe24
Verified Member
Registered: Friday 18th May 2012
Posts: 327

Re: Sitting in on Tests

Yeah I've had the same. Pointless sitting in if all we can do is stare at a headrest for 35 minutes. I will sit in if a pupil requests it but generally don't see the point. Also I find pupils get more minors when I'm sat in.

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#3 Wednesday 12th September 2018 07:49:42

Pjc
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Registered: Wednesday 19th July 2017
Posts: 19

Re: Sitting in on Tests

Hi Josh

With only six months experience you really need to sit in on as many tests as you can. Over time you will be amazed at the information you pick up.

As far as this latest incident is concerned, I can see the examiners point especially where blind spots are concerned. You don't need to know that there was something in the blind spot, there is nothing you can do about it if there is. You only need to know if your candidate checked. As far as looking at junctions you can look but make sure you do it after the candidate there is nothing wrong with that and the information can be useful after the test.

Read DT1 (I tried to insert a link to the document but it didn't work. It can be found on Google) and know the contents as well as the examiner. One of the things that surprised me most was that examiners make mistakes and rather more frequently than they should.

When an examiner makes a mistake (and you are sure of your ground) be sure to take the examiner to one side after the test and point it out firmly but politely. You will gain their respect and find their attitude to you changes.

Good luck

Pjc

Last edited by Pjc (Wednesday 12th September 2018 07:52:22)

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#4 Wednesday 12th September 2018 08:14:26

joshtADI
Verified Member
Registered: Tuesday 11th September 2018
Posts: 3

Re: Sitting in on Tests

Thanks for your replies, very useful

Yes I always sit in on tests if my pupils are happy for me to. Some tell me that my presence would make them more nervous, I would be the same so I respect that. But those I can I absolutely do!

I agree that if there's nothing in the blind-spot I could do nothing, I guess it's just an instinct thing, if the pupil is about to be dual controlled by the examiner I'd like to know about it first if that makes sense. But I suppose it's a habit I need to get myself out of when on tests hmm

I have however since posting this read the guidance on Gov website for Observing tests, and it does say that you are allowed to look left, right, and behind you as long as it doesn't distract the candidate. So I think the examiner was wrong to say it could give him reason to stop the test!  I wasn't exactly flinging my head round every two seconds, it was just a very discreet shoulder check as we moved off !
https://www.gov.uk/guidance/rules-for-observing-driving-tests#during-the-test

I think it just left me feeling pretty humiliated, especially because there were other instructors around and my pupil heard the entire conversation because the car window was open.

I will have a read through the DT1

Many Thanks again for your help smile

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#5 Thursday 13th September 2018 14:09:52

Roadmaster
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Registered: Thursday 4th March 2004
Posts: 5,679

Re: Sitting in on Tests

I would have replied that he should be concentrating on the candidate and not me in the back.

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#6 Friday 14th September 2018 08:12:21

joshtADI
Verified Member
Registered: Tuesday 11th September 2018
Posts: 3

Re: Sitting in on Tests

Roadmaster wrote:

I would have replied that he should be concentrating on the candidate and not me in the back.

Very true. Every time I glanced in the mirror I saw him watching me, I knew something was up.

Maybe he was just having a bad day. Never seen him before, I suspect he was from a different DTC

Last edited by joshtADI (Friday 14th September 2018 08:12:49)

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#7 Wednesday 19th September 2018 16:31:52

richie1966
Verified Member
Registered: Wednesday 11th January 2012
Posts: 60

Re: Sitting in on Tests

JoshtADI. I know how you feel, I have been asked (told) the same in the past and I expect many more of us have as well. I always try and sit in on tests, if invited, because I believe a lot of useful information can be gained so please do try and continue sitting in. The feedback given by DE will mean more to you than your pupil and so you can explain to pupil exactly what the DE was referring to. You will soon get used to NOT doing any checking at junctions; just still still and observe your pupil. Good luck...

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