North Carolina DMV Driving Test Tips

By Catherine Rayburn-Trobaug

Most people fail their driving tests the first time they take it because they are unprepared. Knowing what is coming up will not only increase your chances of passing but eliminate some of the nervousness as well. The North Carolina DMV driving test is similar to many other states in that you are required to pass with 80% correct answers. For an original license, you are required to take four tests: vision, road signs, driving knowledge and a road test.

Vision

Little preparation is needed for the vision test, but you can take a few steps to make sure the test is accurately assessing your vision. Make sure you get a good night's sleep to make sure you're alert as possible. If you have allergies that affect your eyes, take non-drowsy medication.

Traffic Signs

The traffic signs test is not standard in all states, so if you are moving to North Carolina and getting a license, you may be surprised. Shapes of signs will be shown in a monitor, and you must identify them. A good study strategy is to use the NCDOT handbook and memorize the signs without the identifying writing on them.

Knowledge Test

The traditional written test is now given on a computer. The best stategy for passing is to take at least a week to study the NCDOT handbook. Most of the questions are phrased similarly to the handbook, so a certain amount of rote memorization will boost your odds of passing. Sample tests are available through the NCDOT website and private sites as well. Be aware that North Carolina's driving laws are not exactly the same as all other states, so make sure your use the North Carolina official handbook and it is up to date.

Driving Skills Test

The driving, or road, skills test is the final test before getting an original license and are required for original licenses. You'll be tested on 13 points of driving skills on a real-road situation. Some of the areas the test will focus on are obeying and understanding traffic signs, appropriate braking, control of the vehicle around pedestrians and knowledge of the car's lights. Also, you'll be asked to do a three point turn. Make sure you are familiar with the car you'll be using for the test and review the traffic sign section of the handbook. Practice driving in a closed area, and focus on the three point turn.

About the Author

Catherine Rayburn-Trobaugh has been a writer and college writing professor since 1992. She has written for international companies, published numerous feature articles in the "Wilmington News-Journal," and won writing contests for her poetry and fiction. Rayburn-Trobaugh earned a Master of Arts in English from Wright State University.