The Texas Department of Public Safety, which oversees the driver's license programs in the state, requires certain drivers to pass a written or practical test. Some drivers, such as new teenage drivers, must take both tests. The Texas DPS helps drivers prepare for the tests by offering study materials and other resources.
The Texas DPS offers three types of written tests:
- Class C for all regular drivers
- Class M for motorcycle drivers
- Class A or B for commercial drivers of class A and B vehicles
On its website, the Texas DPS offers handbooks for all three types of licenses. These books provide all the information that is included on the written test. Reading carefully and studying the appropriate handbook will help you pass the knowledge test. Though not required for drivers over the age of 25, taking a driver education course also helps you prepare for the written test.
Before you can take any test, you must pay the required fees, which vary depending on the type of license and test.
If you fail a test, the DPS office will hold your application for 90 days. If you don't retake and pass the test before that time, you'll have to submit a new application and pay the required fees again.
The practical driving test is the last piece and can only be completed once you pass the written and vision tests and show proof of auto insurance. You must take the test in the type of vehicle that matches the type of license you're getting. For example, if you are getting a Class C license, any passenger vehicle will suffice, but if you're going for a Class M license, you'll need a motorcycle.
The Texas DPS suggests following these tips to pass:
- Listen carefully to the customer service representative's instructions
- Don't have a conversation during the test
- Practice driving with a qualified licensed driver
Drivers with a learner's permit can only drive with a licensed driver over the age of 21.
According to the Texas DPS driving test checklist, areas to practice include:
- Controlling the car
- Reacting to other drivers
- Driving in your lane
- Using turn signals properly
- Parallel parking
- Stopping quickly
- Backing up
- Following the rules of road
- Obeying traffic signs and signals
If you don't pass, the CSR will tell you when you may take the test again.
All new license applicants must take a vision test. Be sure to wear your glasses or contact lenses if you need them to see while driving to assure you pass the test.