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What is a DMV Practice Test?

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  • Written By: wiseGEEK Writer
  • Edited By: O. Wallace
  • Last Modified Date: 09 November 2018
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A DMV practice test or Department of Motor Vehicles practice test can come in several forms. The DMV is operated by each state and each state can have slightly different rules or features, so it’s first important to look for practice tests in the state in which the person will be driving. These may be for basic driver’s license permit exams or for reviews when people must take the driver’s test again. Tests may also be available for different types of licenses, including for commercial or industrial classes of licenses.

Under many circumstances, a state department will feature a DMV practice test online or that can be downloaded and taken, and then checked against provided answers. These tests may not be the exact length of permit tests taken at the DMV. In fact some only have about ten sample questions and might not ask enough to be a good representative of what will be on a written test.

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Since a DMV practice test from the department can fall short in this area, there are some other options for people preparing to take the written test. Unfortunately, these are usually not free. Whether purchased in book or online form, they are likely to cost some money. Sometimes people can register on certain websites and take as many tests as they want, or other times they’ll only get one test for registration. About the only time a DMV practice test is free is if it is taken as part of a free driving class, as might be offered through a high school.

Some caution must be exerted on the issue of registering for or taking a DMV practice test from a source that is not the DMV. Rules can change, which means new laws can be enacted or other laws become obsolete, and rules are specific to state. A company that doesn’t have a good reputation or isn’t well known may not give accurate tests. Many of them do, but it’s wise to do some investigation before signing up for tests, to make certain any tests taken are like what the DMV gives.

One of the vital means for studying for a DMV practice test or the real exam is getting all materials that the DMV provides on the subject. In most cases, the preparation booklets given by the DMV are the source of information for all questions asked. While taking the few sample tests from the local DMV can test how well knowledge has been acquired, when people find themselves not doing well, it’s time to go back and study the booklet.

This is probably more important than taking a DMV practice test. If needed, study with friends, parents, or those with good driving records. Take notes, make up questions, and really work on mastering the material before the real test is taken. When people do study, they often do very well on the test, allowing them to either retain their licenses or to begin the process of obtaining a first license. It should also be noted that many written tests can be taken more than once if they’re not passed the first time, though sometimes people must wait a certain time period before retesting.

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