Changes to the Check Test
As from April 7th 2014 the DSA will be rolling out the new standards check test.
The main changes are to the marking sheet, grading and the risk management section.
Although the marking sheet looks completely different, the lesson planning, teaching and learning strategies (all on the new marking sheet) should be business as usual for you.
One thing seen time and time again within check test training is the instructors inability to test whether the pupil fully understands something. The best way to test this is by asking open questions that require more than a Yes or No answer.
Many instructors complain that it’s impossible to ask questions whilst the pupil is operating the car. Usually, the problem is that the instructor is so used to telling their pupils what to do, rather than asking thought provoking questions in good time. It takes years of practice asking decent, thought provoking questions at the right time. – It’s not something you can just turn on with 1-2 days notice before your test.
The DSA explain in section 4.1 under typical lessons scenarios the following:
ADIs should be working to understand where the pupil is having difficulties and how they can help them develop sound basic skills. If the ADI is not making the effort to understand, they are not demonstrating competence.
This basically means, stop telling your pupil to do everything all the way up to their test and try to develop their thinking.
TIP: If you think you’re telling your pupils what to do all the time, start pulling them up a little bit more after mistakes and give yourself and the pupil more time for Q & A.
Once you start doing this regularly it will give you the confidence to ask decent, open questions on the move. You may find that you ask them the questions too late. If this happens, say you’re sorry – pull them up and give them a chance to answer and have a go at asking a few more thought provoking questions.
By doing this, you will be subconsciously developing your Q&A bank and learning through experience how early you are required to ask the question in order for your pupil to cope with answering it. The other thing it will force you to think about is route selection. Are you challenging your pupil too much that the route prevents your pupil answering the question? Or, are you too slow because you’re not used to asking questions?