SuperFantasticB
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Has anyone done these courses before? If so, did you manage to pass first time?

I've passed my theory and want to pass my practical as quickly as possible (i've no driving experience by the way).

I'm considering 1 week 'crash courses' but not sure because they're expensive and I might not learn properly in a short space of time.
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StudentNeedingHelp
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Go for a 4 week intensive course, if you have time. More time to learn properly
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SillyEddy
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I was exhausted after a single 2-hour lesson. I don't see how anyone can properly focus for that length of time for a week.

If you're going for an intensive course, then 4 weeks would be better. Personally, I would just spend more time learning. I took a 2-hour lesson once a week. It meant that I had long enough for the skills to sink in. I wasn't just driving because it was fresh in my mind, I was driving because I had fundamentally learnt the skills. I've also heard of instructors just jamming the students through the course and skipping key details. Find a really good instructor, take the time and just learn to drive. What difference does it really make if it takes you a couple of months to learn compared to a week? I took 3 months and 4 days to pass my test... But I've never had a problem in the two years that I've been driving. Where do you need to be in a weeks' time? Who are you trying to impress? Just properly learn to drive. It's better for everyone.
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SuperFantasticB
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Thanks for the replies.

The reason I wanted to learn quickly was because I don't want to have driving lessons conflict with college or volunteering so want to learn in these summer holidays.

I will try do one of the longer intensive courses and if nothing seems to go in, in the first couple of days, then I'll switch to weekly lessons.
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SillyEddy
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(Original post by SuperFantasticB)
Thanks for the replies.

The reason I wanted to learn quickly was because I don't want to have driving lessons conflict with college or volunteering so want to learn in these summer holidays.

I will try do one of the longer intensive courses and if nothing seems to go in, in the first couple of days, then I'll switch to weekly lessons.
Won't you have free periods, or time after/before college? Most people just went out on their driving lessons during their lunch break. I had a regular 2 and 3 hour break due to gaps in my timetable. I just went on lessons then.

No interference with college work at all.
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SuperFantasticB
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(Original post by SillyEddy)
Won't you have free periods, or time after/before college? Most people just went out on their driving lessons during their lunch break. I had a regular 2 and 3 hour break due to gaps in my timetable. I just went on lessons then.

No interference with college work at all.
My college finishes late 2 days a week and I volunteer after lessons on another weekday. My weekends are pretty much booked up too, so it's really a choice between making notes for subjects or having a driving lessons.

Hopefully though, I'll be able to manage at least one per week and will have done most of my lessons in these holidays.
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linkdapink
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I'm starting one ASAP. You may as well go for it, because you won't get a test for a few weeks, so even if you booked your test now, you're unlikely to get for for 5 weeks (for example), so if you learn in one week and still don't feel confident, then you have another 4 weeks to build upon that!
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laura.a.c265
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(Original post by linkdapink)
I'm starting one ASAP. You may as well go for it, because you won't get a test for a few weeks, so even if you booked your test now, you're unlikely to get for for 5 weeks (for example), so if you learn in one week and still don't feel confident, then you have another 4 weeks to build upon that!
I did a 2 week intensive course paid for by my employer and I passed first time. The only downside is that I was quite under confident for a long time after I passed as i hadn't really had much time behind the wheel
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Boo_x
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(Original post by SuperFantasticB)
Thanks for the replies.

The reason I wanted to learn quickly was because I don't want to have driving lessons conflict with college or volunteering so want to learn in these summer holidays.

I will try do one of the longer intensive courses and if nothing seems to go in, in the first couple of days, then I'll switch to weekly lessons.
Why not go with an instructor and have 2-3 lessons a week instead? It will probably work out cheaper and then by the time sept comes around you should have learnt a lot by then so can switch to once a week then?
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beautymadness
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An intensive course may sound like the best option and some people pass first time but it doesn't allow you to build up the skills. If you do them over time I think you would feel more confident.


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KX321
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Even though this isn't what you want to hear I know a few people who did this type of course and although they passed first time they didn't feel confident driving on their own afterwards.

Driving really isn't something that should be rushed. You may think that passing means you're ready for the road but experience is what you really need.
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hollo
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I think learning over a longer time will make you a better driver, which is more important than passing first time. I'd suggest you find an instructor who can fit you in for a few sessions during your first week so that you can get yourself comfortable with being in the car and the basic stuff then reduce it to either one or two lessons a week after that.

The more time you spend on it the more you're likely to experience different driving conditions, weather, day and night driving, navigating diversions etc etc all of which will make you a more confident and safer driver when you pass your test.
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TheCurlyHairedDude
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(Original post by StudentNeedingHelp)
Go for a 4 week intensive course, if you have time. More time to learn properly
That's not really intensive is it?

I passed in a 4 weeks, and that wasn't an intensive course, just regular lessons. Had I got an earlier slot time it would have taken 2 weeks. Then again I only needed 13 hours of learning
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one to one
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Ask yourselves a question.
How can these outfits book you a test in a weeks time, when waiting lists are much longer than this?

one to one
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*Darcie*
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(Original post by linkdapink)
I'm starting one ASAP. You may as well go for it, because you won't get a test for a few weeks, so even if you booked your test now, you're unlikely to get for for 5 weeks (for example), so if you learn in one week and still don't feel confident, then you have another 4 weeks to build upon that!
Have you started an intensive course? How are you finding it? I'm considering doing one of these courses but it is a lot of money to part with with no guarantee that you will actually pass at the end so a little unsure.
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linkdapink
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(Original post by *Darcie*)
Have you started an intensive course? How are you finding it? I'm considering doing one of these courses but it is a lot of money to part with with no guarantee that you will actually pass at the end so a little unsure.
Mine is *technically* semi-intensive. I already had the basics (something that maybe you'd want to get in someone's car before you start paying for it?) and I'm doing 2 hours every day this week and next. I SHOULD be test ready by the end of it, and honestly, its been a lot better for me than my 1.5 hours a week I had a few years ago. I've learnt loads more and not making mistakes over and over like I used to because I'm changing them straight away, revising them in the evenings with my boyfriend, then trying them again the next day and generally getting them right.

I DIDN'T put any money up front, but I did book my test straight away. I can change a test easily, but if I hated my instructor, then I'd be screwed. There's no guarantee with intensive courses, or with weekly lessons that you'll pass, but I've definitely learnt more this way than I have done with weekly lessons. I don't forget anything in between which is a massive bonus!
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*Darcie*
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(Original post by linkdapink)
Mine is *technically* semi-intensive. I already had the basics (something that maybe you'd want to get in someone's car before you start paying for it?) and I'm doing 2 hours every day this week and next. I SHOULD be test ready by the end of it, and honestly, its been a lot better for me than my 1.5 hours a week I had a few years ago. I've learnt loads more and not making mistakes over and over like I used to because I'm changing them straight away, revising them in the evenings with my boyfriend, then trying them again the next day and generally getting them right.

I DIDN'T put any money up front, but I did book my test straight away. I can change a test easily, but if I hated my instructor, then I'd be screwed. There's no guarantee with intensive courses, or with weekly lessons that you'll pass, but I've definitely learnt more this way than I have done with weekly lessons. I don't forget anything in between which is a massive bonus!
I have had lessons in the past and don't feel like I had the best instructor so am very rusty. I have a teaching job that is tricky to get to via public transport so I am under pressure to pass my test!

It sounds like it's going well for you, 2hrs a day for two weeks sounds managable.

You say you didn't put any money upfront so are you paying on a lesson-by-lesson basis? Lots of the intensive/semi-intensive programmes I have looked at offer a set price for say 20 hours and it appears that you have to pay this upfront.

Did your instructor encourage you to book your test straight away or did you do this off your own bat? I am aware that many test centres you cant get a test date for ages so I wouldn't know how to go about this. There would be no point starting two weeks of intensive lessons soon if I couldn't to my test until September.

Sorry for bombarding you with questions, I appreciate your help.
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linkdapink
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(Original post by *Darcie*)
I have had lessons in the past and don't feel like I had the best instructor so am very rusty. I have a teaching job that is tricky to get to via public transport so I am under pressure to pass my test!
It sounds like it's going well for you, 2hrs a day for two weeks sounds managable.

You say you didn't put any money upfront so are you paying on a lesson-by-lesson basis? Lots of the intensive/semi-intensive programmes I have looked at offer a set price for say 20 hours and it appears that you have to pay this upfront.

Did your instructor encourage you to book your test straight away or did you do this off your own bat? I am aware that many test centres you cant get a test date for ages so I wouldn't know how to go about this. There would be no point starting two weeks of intensive lessons soon if I couldn't to my test until September.

Sorry for bombarding you with questions, I appreciate your help.
SAME! I'm in the exact same situation... 1.5hrs public transport, 20m car!

I'm paying lesson-by-lesson, and by the time I take my test next week I'll have spent £320 for lessons, £63 for the test, £30 for the theory, so you can use that to compare prices? I'll have done 18hours by the time I take my test, which is quite a lot really (considering I have already done about 20 with a not-so-good instructor).

I just booked the test as soon as I passed my theory test. I didn't even think about the fact that the instructors might have another test around that time! Oh well! I guess I got lucky with that. I would take your theory and book your test as soon as possible and start your intensive as soon as possible and keep looking for earlier cancellations. I luckily got a cancellation when I first booked, so next week for my test (and I just booked it 19th July!).

I didn't think I'd be able to do it, I really really didn't. But I'm almost at test standard now! Woop! One thing I would say though, and this may ring as true with you as it did with me, I'm being "taught to the test" which as teachers you will know as well as me, might not be great in the long term, but it'll give me the best results! There's also another teaching analogy: everyone would always tell me with teaching that at one point you'd stop thinking about what you're doing and concentrate on what kids are doing... that happens with driving. At some point I stopped thinking too much about what I was doing and started concentrating on people that were driving around me. And that's when it really helps!

Just had to change that. By the time I take my test, I'll have done 15 hours.
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tpxvs
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Bad idea. You need consistency, id say at most have a lesson every other day until youve covvered everything and are test ready. By all means book your test now and work towards it. You dont want to be semi-ready come test day and have a lucky half hour on the test and pass.. only to be a nervous driver afterwards and generally weak. Id say learn for at least a couple of months till you feel fully confident to drive anywhere by yourself with no external help - this is when youre 'test ready'. good luck.
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*Darcie*
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(Original post by linkdapink)
SAME! I'm in the exact same situation... 1.5hrs public transport, 20m car!

I'm paying lesson-by-lesson, and by the time I take my test next week I'll have spent £360 for lessons, £63 for the test, £30 for the theory, so you can use that to compare prices? I'll have done 18hours by the time I take my test, which is quite a lot really (considering I have already done about 20 with a not-so-good instructor).

I just booked the test as soon as I passed my theory test. I didn't even think about the fact that the instructors might have another test around that time! Oh well! I guess I got lucky with that. I would take your theory and book your test as soon as possible and start your intensive as soon as possible and keep looking for earlier cancellations. I luckily got a cancellation when I first booked, so next week for my test (and I just booked it 19th July!).

I didn't think I'd be able to do it, I really really didn't. But I'm almost at test standard now! Woop! One thing I would say though, and this may ring as true with you as it did with me, I'm being "taught to the test" which as teachers you will know as well as me, might not be great in the long term, but it'll give me the best results! There's also another teaching analogy: everyone would always tell me with teaching that at one point you'd stop thinking about what you're doing and concentrate on what kids are doing... that happens with driving. At some point I stopped thinking too much about what I was doing and started concentrating on people that were driving around me. And that's when it really helps!
Wow, that's weird. We must be mad putting this pressure on ourselves just before we start (I presume) our NQT year! But it is a necessary evil.

Thanks, that's really useful, most I've looked at add up to somewhere around that amount when taking tests etc into consideration too.

I passed my theory today so that's one thing done. I have just had a look at test dates through DirectGov but they are all Sept at the earliest. How did you go about checking for cancellations? Are you able ring up the centre direct?

Thanks, that's a good way of looking at it. It has to be a 'teaching to the test' approach for me too as I have not got the time for anything else!

You have been a fab help.

Best of luck for yor test.
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