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Improving motorcycle training: consultation results

Posted by: , Posted on: - Categories: Learning to ride, Motorcycle trainers

9 Motorcycle consultation icons; 'progressive access' training, 6 penalty points ends CBT certificate, CBT on an auto restricts you to riding an auto, taking a theory test before CBT, changing the CBT syllabus to 4 parts, improving the instructor qualification, improving quality assurance, earned recognition for training schools and making the system digital.

Last year, between 30 December 2016 and the 17 February 2017 we held a consultation on proposals to improve the way that motorcycle training works in Great Britain.

Last December, I explained the proposals, what they might mean to you and your pupils and the road safety benefits they’ll achieve.

Thank you to those of you who took part in the consultation. We received over 2,200 responses and the proposals were strongly supported by the motorcycle industry.

This blog post might be a bit longer than usual, but I wanted to go through each of the proposals, the level of support received for each proposal and explain how we’re going to progress these.

Update the qualification process for motorcycle instructors

We’d like to replace the current compulsory basic training (CBT) and direct access scheme (DAS) instructor assessments with a single assessment. Instructors would then be able to provide training for all categories of motorcycle after passing it.

87% of those who responded to the consultation supported improving the way that instructors qualify to provide motorcycle training.

We’ll be working on this next year, and we’ll update you on how we get on with this.

Update the content and structure of the CBT syllabus

We proposed to update the CBT syllabus, so it’s aligned more closely with the national standard for riding mopeds and motorcycles. Riders will be required to ‘know and understand’ rather than ‘be taught’ the different elements in the CBT syllabus. This reflects a more modern approach to client-centred learning.

85% of those who responded to the consultation agreed we should restructure CBT courses to focus on:

  • the importance of equipment and safety clothing
  • on-site training
  • motorcycling theory
  • on-road practical riding skills.

We’ll let you know more about this in next year, and update you on when the changes to the CBT syllabus will be implemented.

Strengthen the quality assurance scheme for motorcycle instructors

We want to introduce mandatory quality assurance checks for all approved motorcycle training courses (this includes CBT, DAS and any future progressive access training courses)  – not just CBT. This would give assurance that training is being provided to the required standard.

97% of those who responded to the consultation support increasing the range of checks that DVSA carries out on motorcycle training schools

We’ll let you know more about how these quality assurance checks will work, next year.

Introduce a licence upgrade training course

We proposed to introduce a training option to let riders below the age of 24 ride larger motorcycles by progressive access, without having to take a further practical test.

92% of those who responded to the consultation support introducing a training course that existing riders can take to upgrade their motorcycle licence.

We’ll need to carry out a further consultation to work through the details of how the licence upgrade training course will work. We plan to consult on this in Spring 2018 and will let you know when we announce this.

Restrict learner riders to automatic motorcycles if used for CBT

We think it’s important to restrict riders to the type of motorcycle that they completed CBT with. This will make sure that riders have the skills they need when riding independently.

84% of those who responded to the consultation agreed we should restrict riders who take their CBT course on an automatic motorcycle to only riding automatic bikes.

This is something we’ll need to carry out a further consultation on, to see how this will work. We’ll also need to look into how riders that complete their CBT on an automatic motorcycle, can upgrade their license to manual afterwards.

Revoking CBT certificates

We proposed that CBT certificates should be revoked if the learner rider gets 6 penalty points, during the 2 year validity period of their CBT. This means that they’ll be unable to ride until another CBT course has been successfully completed.

85% support revoking CBT certificates from riders who get 6 penalty points as it would stop learner riders from riding with L plates after getting points for offences including careless or dangerous riding.

This is something we’ll need to carry out a further consultation on, to see how this will work. We’ll need to work with DVLA on this too.

A digital platform for the CBT administrative process

We want to explore options, with DVLA, to move the administration of CBT from its current paper-based system to a digital platform.

89.9% agreed that the CBT administration process should be on a digital platform. Many people considered that it would be easier to check the expiry of their CBT certificate online.

We intend to introduce a digital platform as soon as we can, but this will be dependent on other IT priorities both at DVSA and DVLA. It might be possible to schedule some of the work into IT changes that have already been planned to enhance current DVSA and DVLA systems. I’ll keep you updated with how this work progresses.

Theory test before or as part of CBT

We think it’s really important all learner riders pass a theory and hazard perception test before taking their CBT. It’d make sure new riders have the theoretical knowledge and understanding of the rules of the road before they ride independently.

85% agreed new riders should have to pass a theory test before they take a CBT course, or as part of their course, to help them ride safely on our busy roads.

We will need to consider the full impact of introducing the requirement to take a theory test as part of CBT and we’ll consult further on this in 2018.

Earned recognition for ATBs and instructors

We’d like to develop an earned recognition scheme to recognise those ATBs who provide higher standards and facilities, and whose instructors achieve consistently high-quality standards.

94% supported introducing a system for motorcycle training schools to be given recognition for consistently high standards.

So, over the next year, we’ll develop the criteria for ‘earned recognition’ with the training industry and develop the functionality of the ‘find a moped or motorcycle CBT course’ service on GOV.UK.

Next steps for 2018

So to summarise, over the next year we’re looking to implement:

  • an updated qualification process for motorcycle instructors
  • an updated CBT syllabus
  • a quality assurance scheme for approved training courses
  • a digital platform for the CBT administrative process
  • earned recognition for ATB’s and instructors

We’ll be consulting further, in Spring 2018, to get your views on:

  • a licence upgrade training course
  • restricting riders to the type of motorcycle that they completed CBT with
  • revoking CBT certificates
  • taking a theory test before or as part of CBT

You can read the full report and consultation findings on GOV.UK. 

I’m looking forward to implementing these proposals in the next few years, and I’ll keep you updated on how we get on with this.

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  1. Comment by Aled Corps posted on

    Disappointed not to see something in here about stopping people being able to renew a CBT after CBT and never actually pass a test. And nothing about stopping businesses from exploiting that for delivery driving. Isn't the whole point of the CBT to allow people to build up some experience in order to pass an actual riding test? It baffles me that you can be allowed to ride on a CBT for business use.

    • Replies to Aled Corps>

      Comment by Kevin Davidson posted on

      am liking the idea of the Theory test an that better education dose need to be put into place. the is to many young people with no concept of the rules of the road an understanding road signs. i ride on a CBT done mine last year i have no intentions of passing my test at the moment its a financial thing and also the test is allot harder to pass. not just that its personal choice everything is based on 2 years the theory certificate lasts 2 years and so does the mod 1. if mod 2 is not passed in 2 years the CBT THEORY AND MOD 1 has to be taking all over again so its costing the person as the learner in the long run more money plus they are already being penalised as a learner they can,t go on motorways they can not take passengers they have to use L plates plus repeat the CBT every 2 years. so i disagree with totally stopping learners on a CBT after a period of time. that will only cause more problems an people will ride with no Licence what so ever Witch in one of the comments the DVSA did also mention this so i disagree with the restricting the number of times a person is allowed to ride as a learner that will only cause massive problems in the long run. also some people rely on the bike to get to an from work so that can play a big part to peoples lives. its all easy saying restrict the number of times you can take it but what impact is it having on others? i think after 28 years since the CBT was Introduced the is going to be massive changes as it is to the CBT. restricting it is just going way to fare in my option the should be the option their for learners Either to ride as a leaner on a CBT or if the decide to go in for the full licence then that,s their Choice,

    • Replies to Aled Corps>

      Comment by Kevin Davidson posted on

      also the idea of these proposals was to better Educate young people because the statistics of young learners that was killed was through the roof. but another comment i would like to make am also a cyclist and ride a motorbike i see more car drives breaking the rules of the road cutting up in front of you tail gating in good road conditions using mobile phones even though this new 6 points an £200 law as come in. so its not just all about learners i see people on the road breaking laws all the times yes ok i admit i see motorcycles speed yes motorcycles i also include but theirs more cars on the roads then motorcycles and i have experienced more problems with car drives then motorcycles. my argument is its not just about having a full bike car licence or whatever its all down to peoples attitudes on the roads an no matter how many laws policies changes to tests or whatever its not going to change the attitudes to people just like the £200 an 6 points on your Licence. just means nothing am seeing people on the mobiles all the time with no concept of the Consequences. am all for a good percentage of the proposals what i get angry at is its always the learners that get it because their the less experienced on the road. what about the once with the full licence that drive ride whatever on the public road and don,t abide by the highway code,

  2. Comment by Rich Woolgar posted on

    Thanks for the update Mark. Some excellent proactive plans there! Well done and looking forward to seeing them roll out.

  3. Comment by bob craven posted on

    I am just worried how long all these changes will take and whilst I am aware that you have to seriously consider the trainers qualifications just how long will that take to impliment and then get up to speed and in the mean time newbies and back to biking bikers are dying or being seriously injured on our roads every second of every day. Maybe we should also look at what other countries like Belgium or Australia do for some guidance as to what works and what doesnt and that may bring to mind other matters that we have not considered before but measures that will benefit all our two wheeled riders.

    I am a retired police officer and have been riding bikes for over 55 years. What I would like to see is something like the so called advanced riding instruction but being given at a younger age to newbies and taken over a period of 12/24 months after CBT for those that want to proceed to being full time and serious bikers and not waiting until they are ready for retirement.

    I learned with RAC/ACU in the 60's and that was 13 two hour sessions over 13 weeks plus some further evenings when weather was dry riding ort as a group or with an instructor on a one to one. That was of course in the days that instruction/training could be given by lay persons and not the present situatiojnwhere it will cost a fortune to get that degree of instruction nowadays and those within the business, earning monies would not like the situation where their livelyhood is threatened by such volunteers and yet the vast majority of Advanced ridiers are advised /instructed by ordinary members of the public.

    • Replies to bob craven>

      Comment by Martin Rowlands posted on

      I totally agree to your comment regarding the newbies acquiring the advance training within 24 months. And I know it is a thought of mine of anyone wanting to ride bikes over 125 or 250cc bikes if it was possible.
      Regards Martin Rowlands.

      • Replies to Martin Rowlands>

        Comment by bob craven posted on

        Martin whilst I mentionmed the Advanced training sceme it is in many ways the bible when training motorcycists are concerned but unfortunately it still has a few faults that need ironing out. It tends to teach candidates how to make faster progress than would necessarily not be safe if a normal rider. To look more seriously on the general day to day riding a police officer would experience such as he would do in any given 8 hour day on a bike. Advising less on the faster making of progress on arterial and country roads and overtaking with the use of excessive speeds , many being y tyakenover the speed limit. Also look at bends in general. Of speed and stopping or slowing distances on approaches particularly on bends and vanishing points, they being ok for less severe bends and curves in the roiad but for severe bends , particulalry blind or reducing radius ones relying more on the first principal of being able to stop in the distance one can see to be clear. Riding in a manner that is not necessary and may indeed cause riders to place themselves in greater danger and sacrifycing safety for the sake of expediancy . So the police manual must change to accomodate a more sedate pace of progress, lose some of the urgency and speed on bends and overtakes and to give more perspective to defensive riding techniques.

    • Replies to bob craven>

      Comment by Martyn Blackwell posted on

      Some very valid points there Bob, although I have always wondered why there seems to be such resistance/reluctance to training in the wet.

      • Replies to Martyn Blackwell>

        Comment by T Holmes posted on

        I actually did my CBT in august in the wet. Instructor said it would be a little more challenging, but had been calling me a show off and cheat during the whole of the training centre portion because I learn so quickly and did my research on how to ride before turning up.

        Last time I rode anything before my CBT was a quad on the farm when I was 8, so taking my CBT at 35 and being praised was nice. I had also downloaded the theory/HPT app on my tablet and spent almost 2 weeks going through it.

        I applaud the changes coming.

      • Replies to Martyn Blackwell>

        Comment by bob craven posted on

        It does seem that many riders do not like riding in the rain and yet it is so easy to do and a necessity to learn properly if one is caught out in it.
        Maybe its the pocket rockets, those on powerfull racing replica machines that dont like it [ they represent some 50% of all motorcycles registered]or that they in the main are the weekend warriors who just like dry fine weather at weekends or evenings and if they have to ride in a litte wet then they get flustered and over react. Or maybe their machines are not comfortable being so sensitive to the throttle and braking controls that they are difficult to ride on wet surfaces.

        I have no problem with rain and many others who commute every day also understand that greater observations and more of a passive defensive riding technique are reguired. It maybe some are just not up to it [ being defensive that is]and should they meet with a wet road surface they may more easily come to grief on it.

        • Replies to bob craven>

          Comment by bob craven posted on

          I probably will have to add to that that pocket rockets generally do not have good wet tyres unlike say tourers or custom bikes and so if worn out by fast riding and showing little signs of any possible tread they can be prettty lethal on wet road.

    • Replies to bob craven>

      Comment by Bob Smith posted on

      I wonder if I qualify as one of those ordinary members of the public Bob?Been riding bikes on and off since 1987 and an advanced riding instructor since 2010.
      Kind regards, Bob Smith RoSPA (dip)

    • Replies to bob craven>

      Comment by Mark Carpenter posted on

      Also as an ex police officer the level of instruction must be with the initial school,
      I/we teach to a much higher level than is required to pass a test, unfortunately some people will "pull the pin" after passing their test and that is not down to your instruction (or lack of it) it's the individuals personalty.
      I would wholeheartedly go for the scheme or something similar you suggest but you unfortunately cant expect new riders to be forced into "advanced lessons" it just wouldn't work unless they want to do it.

      • Replies to Mark Carpenter>

        Comment by bob craven posted on

        If you are saying that Advanced is a higher level then I would argue that it is a different level but not necessarily a Higher level and furter that it and can be understood by younger riders with less experience. However I dont think that young and inexperienced riders should suffer the overtakes at all costs and sometimes at speeds that exceed the limit or of being able to ride faster round some bends or to do many of the things that are no longer in the Roadcraft Manual. They having been deleted because they were considered perhaps to be to dangerous.

        I have riden for over 55 years and I have undergone some degrees of training . I was the youngest instructor with the RAC/ACU back in the 1960's and have from time to time undertaken Advanced level and now many so called Advanced riders. Some are mates and some are not. As you say its up to the individual and thats so of some police officers or retired ones who break the law or ride it to its safe limit[ if safe is the word]on numerous occasions and promote what I consider to be an unhealthy attitude to the safety issues of defensive riding. Some tend to push the bounderies wherever possible and rely on the making of progress their defense forgetting that they are training or educating or advising ordianary members of the public who will or should never have the need to reach such higher speeds or indeed ride in a manor that is unsafe and as it says in the Roadcraft manual one should never sacrifice safety for the sake of expediancy.

  4. Comment by John Deam posted on

    All looks good to me. Ex-pedal-cyclist and ex-motorcyclist and now car driver, age 83.

    • Replies to John Deam>

      Comment by George Bailey posted on

      It is a very good ie if you learn on a automatic bike or scooter you can only ride a automatic same as a car only problem a electric bike ?
      When you have taken CBT lasting two years why it should last the life of the
      Licence ? As the national cycling proficiency test

  5. Comment by Dave C posted on

    In my 35yrs of riding motorcycles I've seen a lot of changes, however one thing for certain is that I don't often see troublesome youngsters on motorcycles. The problem people are the 40-55yr olds who suddenly have spare money and then buy a powerful motorcycle and become a nuisance.

    • Replies to Dave C>

      Comment by bob craven posted on

      Unfortunately statistics show a different view . That the vast majority, about 2/3rds of all accidents are in urban areas [ 90% of all accidents occur within 5 miles of home]and involve in the main young persons under the age of 24 years, kids and students etc. These are the newbies that we are not getting at as they just undertake a couple of hours CBT and then ride off into oblivion.

      If it were a car driver of similar age then they or their parents would expect to pay for something like the national average of 45 lessons. So why cant the motorcyclists have to undergo the same degree of training with a greater emphasis on their own vulnerability and therefore on defensive riring techniques.

      Its a start that they will undergo some pre training in taking the theory tests and if further training and costs discourage motorcycling then so be it. It will discourage those that generally feel that training is of little benefit but they are generally those that could really do with it. It will at least lead those that are determined to ride and have that freedon will understand that with freedom comes responsibility and therefore will accept and undertake training that will help him keep safe on the roads of today.

      As a result there will initially be fewer riders out there but those that do ride will within 12 months to 2 years be better able to ride safe and look after themselves and the stats should reflect this .

      Those that dont undergo training should eventually lose the right to ride as if they are able to ride without any form of training other than the CBT every two years they are a danger to themselves but more importantly to to all other road users as well.

  6. Comment by Glyn posted on

    All looks good. If only we can instill an attitude in young riders (and drivers) of the need for life long learning and the acquisition and practice of advanced skills. Passing the test should only be the beginning.

    • Replies to Glyn>

      Comment by Alex posted on

      Hi Glyn,
      Perhaps it is not only the younger drivers 🙂
      As a motorcyclist who recently learnt to ride in my 'later life', I highly value the post-test training I was fortunate to have i.e. Bikesafe, IAM and feedback from more experienced fellow riders etc. The lessons learnt are not only potential life-savers for riders learning/returning in later life they are also valuable for younger riders.
      I personally believe more should be done to make these excellent ways of increasing knowldge and awareness more widely known and utilised by all ages and experience levels. (Just my personal view based on my learning experiences to date).

      • Replies to Alex>

        Comment by Len posted on

        As a past customer of the IAM and having returned to motorcycling in later life, I opine that the Advanced Rider Course has been a total necesity for me to update my rider skills.
        However, I did need to sort the wheat from the chaff regarding the conflicting advice given by different observers. I can only assume that some are, and some are not, ex-professionals (?)

      • Replies to Alex>

        Comment by bob craven posted on

        I agree that training should be considered a necessity for all motorcyclists whether newbies or returning bikers. It doesnt seem sensible that a person of a certain age can ride a powerfull bike for the first time without having any experience on it. Perhaps a few hours of initial training at the point of sale wouldnt go amiss and included in the costings [ say £20 or £30 ] of the machine purchase price. At least of an hour duration with a qualified assessor. That said of course an inexperienced rider can be a danger to himself and others even if its only a 15 HP engine and capable of a mere 65 mph or a powerfull 150HP bike capable of well over 160 mph.

        Its not only an attitude of mind but of a sense of what is safe that only comes with experience or the training that is of course the experience of others which is passed down.

  7. Comment by George Donaldson posted on

    A training course to upgrade to higher licence without having to take another test is the correct way to go depending on the age to what cc they can ride.
    The course should also be for rider's with a full licence who have not motorcycled for years plus the car drivers who can drive the three wheel paggio MP3 types motorcycles without ever have driven a motorcycle it's just common sense safety

  8. Comment by A.walk posted on

    Sounds good, overall, in theory but how much extra will all of these implementations cost. If CBT was much more, I paid £100, id have been put off doing it.

  9. Comment by Graham Peak posted on

    All this in 12months, yet no actual concrete decisions or actual dates. This should have been sorted for introduction 2018. As mentioned above. When are these planned to come into effect?

    • Replies to Graham Peak>

      Comment by Olivia (DVSA) posted on

      Hi Graham,

      Over the next year we’re looking to implement:

      an updated qualification process for motorcycle instructors
      an updated CBT syllabus
      a quality assurance scheme for approved training courses
      a digital platform for the CBT administrative process
      earned recognition for ATB’s and instructors

      We’ll be consulting further, in Spring 2018, to get your views on:

      a licence upgrade training course
      restricting riders to the type of motorcycle that they completed CBT with
      revoking CBT certificates
      taking a theory test before or as part of CBT


      • Replies to Olivia (DVSA)>

        Comment by Dawn posted on

        I ride a 125 automatic and have done at least 10 CBTs which I don't mind doing every 2years. What I don't like is the fact that I am practically being forced to take a bike test after riding for 30 years. I need my bike to get to work so I know I would have to do it because I have no choice. I have no interest in riding anything bigger than I have got and would really like to stay as I am. I am a 50 year old woman and I have seen comments on here about lifelong learner's but everyone is different and I understand that younger inexperienced riders do need extra support to get on the road.

  10. Comment by T Maxwell posted on

    While I agree that improving training for riders is excellent, I think there should be focus given to training the other road users.There are far too many distractions in today's vehicles from phones to sat nav etc and most drivers have no idea of the issues riders face . I have passed my advanced riding test and have been on bikesafe but it does not protect the rider from others mistakes which unfortunately usually hurts those on PTWs.
    In European countries teenagers can ride scooters before they can get a car and get a better understanding and tolerance for PTW riders, in the UK we are teaching new car drivers how to use sat navs? seems to be a conflict to me...

  11. Comment by Andy Boot posted on

    're the automatic only after completion of cbt on an automatic bike; how many geared mopeds are around these days? This surely means that a 16 year old is forced to take cbt on an automatic then, I assume, will be forced to pay again on reaching 17 if they want to ride a geared bike. This seems unfair to young people who may not be the richest in the world.

    • Replies to Andy Boot>

      Comment by Olivia (DVSA) posted on

      Hi Andy,

      We know they are few manual mopeds around however we'll be consulting further on how young riders who want to upgrade to a manual CBT can do this.


  12. Comment by Tim Wilson posted on

    Anything that improves rider training,standards and safety is a positive move. Encouraging more people to ride whilst decreasing accidents is a must . These proposals appear a big step forward to these aims.

    • Replies to Tim Wilson>

      Comment by John langton posted on

      I take it you have a full bike license would you be willing to take the bike test say somthing like every 4 years just to see if you have picked up any bad points of driving I bet you and a few other full licensed bikers wouldn't pass I've been riding since I was 16 iam now 56 the reason I have not done a full test is because my ego isn't as big as some iam happy to ride a 125cc

    • Replies to Tim Wilson>

      Comment by bob craven posted on

      Many years ago there was the RAC/ACU motorcycle training scheme and it took newbies on a 12/13 week course of two hour sessions and they undertook training both on and of the road , first aid, maintenance the law and Highway Code and all at a price that anyone could afford even if on a paper round.

      The scheme was run by VOLUNTEERS and in general a good lot of well meaning experienced motorcyclists who would stand no messing around. It was like belonging to a club with a lot of knowledge. At the end of the course was an exam which was lot harder than the then current DSA one. Riders were followed round and assessed on every aspect of knowledge that they had acquired.

      Unfortunately in the 1970s the government of the day changed the rules that allowed lay persons [ volunteers]to teach or instruct and so it became professional based tuition only.

      That said the IAM and other organisations faught for the right to continue to teach their so called Advanced Training and that was permitted as persons undergoing the training were actual memebers of a Club and it wasnt clasified as a Driving Exam but their own in house.

      The RAC/ACU discontinued the training and it was left to professionals to do the training and they were few and are far between and could prove expensive. Even today you can get car driving training at prices from £10 per hour but it costs up to £30 per hour for motorcyclists. This is brought down by training more than one rider at a time but sometimes up to 4 riders.

      • Replies to bob craven>

        Comment by Pete posted on

        Maximum 2 to 1 on road.

  13. Comment by Ken Quinn posted on

    Its crazy that I hold a C+E licence, and have done since 1997 (And a cat B licence since 1983.) and can drive a vehicle up to 44 tonnes, yet I need to pass a CBT and have L plates displayed to ride a scooter of some 8bhp.

    How about grandfather rights for those that have held a car or higher licence for, say X years, so that they can ride a 125cc machine without L plates?

    I currently ride a manual 125cc scooter and under the new proposed rules, I would be limited to an automatic. Not cricket really.

    • Replies to Ken Quinn>

      Comment by Olivia (DVSA) posted on

      Hi Ken,

      The advanced planning skills and the knowledge required of a driver of a C+E vehicle are clearly transferrable skills for a rider but the ability to control a motorcycle safely and to deal with the other challenges faced by a motorcyclist are different to those faced by an LGV driver.

      Motorcyclists face far greater risks of being killed or seriously injured than car and LGV drivers, we want to encourage more people to take additional training to raise standards. Any changes introduced and the automatic only restriction would apply to new riders and would not be retrospective.


  14. Comment by Richard Moore posted on

    Many CBT candidates and the vast majority of full licence candidates already hold a full car licence. In my experience they often have a lack of knowledge regarding "the rules of the road" that shows passing a theory test does not guarantee knowledge of the subject.
    Also very importantly, will potential CBT candidates be barred from taking practical training until they have passed a theory test? If so will an equivalent policy be put in force for car, lgv trainees?

    • Replies to Richard Moore>

      Comment by Olivia (DVSA) posted on

      Hi Richard,

      Passing the theory and hazard perception test ensures riders and drivers have the right knowledge at the start of their riding or driving careers. We will be consulting further on the options for taking the theory and hazard perception test before, after, or part way through the CBT course.

      There are no plans to introduce this for car or LGV trainees who face lower risks of being killed or seriously injured than motorcyclists.


  15. Comment by Stewart C Jackson posted on

    I think doing a theory is a good idea however it will in my opinion cause problems for instructors as many candidates might be put off in the first place. Question If they pass theory test before CBT would it cover for other categories A1, A2 and A? Will this theory test be a normal comprehensive theory or a simpler one with less questions or easier? Would motorway question be relivent to a 16-17 year old on CBT? Change ages for larger categories killed the bike and instructor market will doing this do same for less powerful machines? Mind wonders!

    • Replies to Stewart C Jackson>

      Comment by Olivia (DVSA) posted on

      Hi Stewart,

      We intend to consult further on whether we'll require riders to take their theory test either before, or as part of, their CBT course.

      The vast majority of people who responded to the consultation felt that trainee riders should take a theory test before attending a CBT assessment. The full theory test would cover the larger bike categories.

      Although moped riders aren't allowed on motorways passing the full theory test would encourage more riders to go on and take a full motorcycle test when they are old enough, which would allow them to ride on motorways - so the motorway questions would be valid.

      We hope these initiatives will encourage more people to take more training, and help them through a lifetime of safe riding.


  16. Comment by Aaron... posted on

    I don't think you need to do the CBT every two years.....i believe that you only need to do it once.....if the CBT could be used to limit you to a 125cc motorcycle this would be an incentive to get people out of cars ...hence cutting congestion and my self ...ive been driving 20 years done my Hgv licence and a CBT....but find it odd that I have to do a CBT every two years..

    • Replies to Aaron...>

      Comment by John langton posted on

      Well said Aaron I agree iam happy to ride a 125 not every one has such ego where you must pass your test and rush out to be a big macho biker

    • Replies to Aaron...>

      Comment by Mark posted on

      I know a bike is different to a car...but I do think that if you have a car license and decide to have a 125 as a local commuter etc. do your CBT once and that should be it. Also why should you have to do a theory test if you have already passed you car test?

    • Replies to Aaron...>

      Comment by Mark N posted on

      You don't need to retake CBT every 2 years. All you have to do is take a bike test. As a learner you have never been tested so why should you not have to be tested one way or another? I slightly sympathise that in your case you are obviously a very qualified driver but the law does not work like is by design a very blunt tool. Just take the test it is cheaper than a CBT and it's done then.

    • Replies to Aaron...>

      Comment by bob craven posted on

      Unfortunately without proper and sensible training to an understanding of the vulnerability that a motorcyclist has to acknowledge nothing will get better at all. The CBT rs are the most vulnerable group within the motorcycle regeme. They are basically considered as some to be organ doners.

      Without any formal training they continue to be a danger to themselves and to all other road users.

  17. Comment by Rob Jordan posted on

    Let's talk about getting new car drivers on to a motorcycle CBT via some form of incentive. Let them learn about vulnerability and what the road is really like. We could easily see a double benefit here in car and motorcycle safety with a reduction in deaths and injuries to go with it.

    • Replies to Rob Jordan>

      Comment by bob craven posted on

      It would be utopia if all car drivers undertook training on motorcyles. but I would not like the car drivers atitude on a bike as its a totally diference state of mind and that has to be accepted by all who undertake the riding of a motorcyle. If one doesnt have the wherewithall to understand the rational bikers philosophy then one is going to be a danger on the road

  18. Comment by Bill Woodman posted on

    This is all very good but when are we going to apply similar stringent conditions to car drivers?

  19. Comment by Chris posted on

    I agree that you should have to only do the CBT once after all its purpose is to be the first step in to biking and was never designed to be repeatedly done.
    I personally have completed the CBT
    four times and would love to progress to a full licence but I'm simply not in a financial situation to be able to find hundreds of pounds to do a das course and none of my local training schools offer hourly lessons so I would like to see a scheme put in place that would allow people to take a slower progression to a full licence perhaps upgrading the cbt to allow you to ride a 250 then to the A2 then to the full A licence. I'm sure this would be cost more and take longer in the long run but it may encourage people to do further training as it would be less money to find on a test by test basis than a large lump sum. I just feel the current system prices people out of getting getting a full licence and makes repeatedly doing the cbt the only viable option if they want to get on two wheels.

    • Replies to Chris>

      Comment by bob craven posted on

      Check with the local IAM or RoSPA group or scooter/motorcycle club they should be doing some training that you are looking for or will have a qualified member that will spend some time with you so that you can at least make your riding safer. If you lived near me in Lanc ashire I would do that for free of course. Well maybe an occasional cup of tea... and cake,

      This is what we need some volunters that can mentor the inexperienced.
      In belgeum they have buddies that do that in local clubs.

  20. Comment by Sean Murray posted on

    For those that have a full driver's license, and have been riding on CBT's for a while (in my case nearly 5yrs), in the New World Order, would they need to complete a theory test every time they reapplied for a CBT certificate?

    Also, how would the progressive course work?
    Ride for two years without fault and then you're able to ride on a full license??

    • Replies to Sean Murray>

      Comment by Olivia (DVSA) posted on

      Hi Sean,

      Whether the theory test will have to be re-taken each time a CBT course is completed will need to be considered as part of a further consultation.
      The progressive access training course would require a rider to complete a day's training with an approved instructor to gain the entitlement to ride bigger more powerful bikes, this would be instead of taking a test.


      • Replies to Olivia (DVSA)>

        Comment by Kevin Davidson posted on

        hi Olivia i am responding in regards to another comment on here in regards to the progressive training route, i am abit confused with that. does this mean you can upgrade on a CBT to full Licence or is it only relevant with a full Licence who wish to upgrade their Category from A1 or A2 or to a full unrestricted A licence,

  21. Comment by Alan Cole posted on

    Thanks for the update Mark, I'm looking forward to hearing more about the licence upgrade training.

  22. Comment by J Fletcher posted on

    It's all a bloody mess. I've been using public highways for 30 years without causing any incidents. I'm qualified to drive/ride several types of vehiclesfrom pushbikes through the to HGV class 1. It is extremely frustrating that, having completed several theory tests, I'm still required to be asked over and over again if I know how to use the aforementioned highways. Why on earth does one need this, after all, it's like riding a bike??? Sorry for the pun. I dislike 'tests' and would rather complete an intensive course to gain a 'full' unrestricted motorcycle licence. I do agree that those giving instruction should be better qualified and monitored and are not just in it for the money. Oh that's another bone of contention, COST, it should not cost more than it would for a car test/assessment.

  23. Comment by J Fletcher posted on

    Adding to what I've already said, I'm due my renewal of cbt soon and for the first 2years of my biking experience I have found that there is a huge void for provisional riders to advance their learning and riding skills. What I have done and learned a great deal from over the last 2years is I joined a few bike clubs/groups to gain knowledge from experienced riders and attended 'ride outs' to gain practical experience as well as riding most days to and from work. I also tried to join my local IAM, institute of advanced motorcyclists, where I was given a practical assessment with one of their lovely riders and given useful feedback. However, I was refused membership, thus access to courses, to improve my skills further, on the basis that 'I haven't passed my full motorbike test and don't hold a full licence for motorcycling. I was however, invited along to their ride out which I attended and managed to keep up with the bigger bike riders and was complimented on my riding skills. So there you have it, no formal/official training available to be able to advance and gain a full bike licence unless I pay, potentially hundreds if not thousands of pounds.

  24. Comment by Jean posted on

    I totally agree with the comment above having to take your CBT every 2 years is a money making scheme. And if you have to take a theory before your CBT is this also every 2 years so more money. If a cc limit is capped upto a 125 for CBT only and then anything above a full bike licence to be taken would be alot better. It's ridiculous we have to pay every 2 years for our CBT and now maybe a theory.

  25. Comment by Simon posted on

    Bob Craven - 'the vast majority of Advanced ridiers are advised /instructed by ordinary members of the public'. This is incorrect in the context that 'ordinary members of the public' are certifiedobservers and the governing bodies that issue advanced qualifications require that riders pass a rigorous practical test ride that is overseen by a respectable qualified advanced rider examiner, commonly a serving or ex-serving police class1 advanced rider. Only upon passing such a test can a rider become classed as 'Advanced'. After 52 years living in the UK I currently live in Australia and I can assure you that in Queensland, the standard required for a complete novice to get on the road is frightening! There is also no comparable advanced qualification in Australia that is available to 'Joe Public' as the very few that offer such courses are purely track based with no on the road training/mentoring.

  26. Comment by Dave Southgate posted on

    some very good points about improving rider skills and their knowledge and understanding of the importance of proper kit etc but one thing that does concern me is the lack of support that motorcyclists receive from the general car driving population. we can all be as highly trained and experienced as humanly possible but we still get injured or killed by inexperienced / blind / medically and physically unfit or just plain ignorant drivers. Is there anyway that we can work together with the other motoring organisations to get these drivers either retrained or off the road altogether?

  27. Comment by Paul Gardiner posted on

    Re; M/C Licence upgrade via a proposed training course.
    I know of two 'A2' category licence holders who recently passed their DVSA 'A2' test with me who are presently doing their iAM-RoadSmart Advanced Rider Course, after an initial assessment. When they are deemed ready, they will be tested by The Examiner, (a Class 1 motorcycle licence holder).
    I would ask you to consider that iAM or RoSPA qualifications are regarded as a fast-track upgrade to the 'A' category. The training and practice required for these tests can be quite lengthy (4-8 months) hence the two year wait to upgrade should be waved, as the sooner an 'A2' Rider starts the course the sooner they will be a safer Rider.
    Rgds, Paul Gardiner, CBT&DAS Qualified, IMI accredited iAM-RoadSmart National Observer.

    • Replies to Paul Gardiner>

      Comment by Olivia (DVSA) posted on

      Hi Paul,

      Under the proposals for licence upgrade training DVSA Approved Training Bodies (ATBs) would be authorised to provide this training. Advanced riding instructors who are not part of an ATB may not have access to a training site and are not subject to the same standards checking as ATBs and we don't currently plan to include these in this scheme.

  28. Comment by mark lysaght posted on

    i have done my A1 license.just to get those pesky L plates off my the time i felt my 125 would do my needs to commute too and from work.but i wish i done a bigger bike test but i couldnt afford it.i have been riding an A1 license for about 3 years and my options are limited.i feel if a qualifed rider even on a A1 licence can be shown,and show he or she can ride a bigger bike then if the school can upgrade the license,that would be a fantastic way forward.this should be a cheaper toute for riders to progress to a better machine.

  29. Comment by Mark Pannell posted on

    A useful package of tweaks to motorcycle training when all said and done.
    However the wider picture of overall road safety still lies with the individuals behind the steering wheel or holding the handlebars (both PTW and cycle).
    Young people do not see driving lessons or rider training as the start of a journey to make them a competent,considerate and safe road user but just as a formality to getting out in/on a form of personal transport.
    Once achieved I would think the majority soon believe that they are as good as they need to be and that is the attitude that needs to be changed.
    The county council and emergency service education teams are wonderful and need to be applauded and suitably funded and work with the independent driving and riding schools to promote the civilian advanced driving/riding training bodies as a natural progression to all newly qualified drivers/riders after obtaining their driving licence.
    I am not criticising what they already do as at times it must be a thankless task, but they need a range of centrally funded incentives to encourage progression onto and interest in further training for both four and two wheel users.

  30. Comment by ian dix posted on

    what i still do not unstand is the need to keep renewing cbt, 53 years old and have ridden for over 30 tears, have a full car leicence and do not have the need to ride anything over a 125cc, wny cannot i just ride with out getting a full leicence, i don;t need ome, had 30 years of motorcyle training

  31. Comment by bob craven posted on

    NO...... There is a need for greater understanding between motorists and motorcylists. They say that if a motorist has someone related to them or friend who rides a bike the will generally be more accepting of the dangers that motorcyclists face and therefore drive with greater consideration to bikers. I have always acknowleged a consideration say its because the driver has not entered my road as I approach but has seen me and obviously waited. Things like that need an acknowledgement like the nod of a head or raising of a hand or leg as they do abroad. Its important to gain as much wellbeing that one can and give it back Give consideration thats what the H.C. says all drivers or road users should do but many dont. I do try to creat goodwill for my benefit and the benefit of others on two wheels.

    Their is or was a campaign called No Suprise No Accident and it basically means that its up to us to train ourselves knowing what car /van drivers are like we should assume or presume the worst case scenario and ride accordingly, ie. he is going to pull out on me, he definately hasnt seen me. he is going far to fast and not going to stop in time, there is something obstuction the road ahead round that bend etc.

    Get the gist. It also means that when we see something happening we apply our own standards to it and sometimes presume wrongly. We presume that the driver is like us and sees and thinks like us. He doesnt and so we can make the wrong presumpotion and assess the situation wrongly. So never ever assume anything only that all other drivers are morons that havnt seen you and therefore ride accordingly.

  32. Comment by Craig posted on

    A totall and utter joke seriously a theory when you do a cbt to ride a 50 to. 125 You might aswell Go for a full test seriously have a good think what your doing there’s a lot out there that don’t want to go to a high power machine or want a full licence some people are happy going on there way on a 125 your not improving at all it should be a foot in the door when it comes to cbt not a means to a end trust me not many people can pass that theory all your doing is punishing the tidy drivers people who have driven for years on a cbt like myself if they can’t pass that theory what happens then they all get put off driving and then you dvsa will then publish a bogus report saying road safety has increased for cbt riders WHEN REALITY the truth will be you’ve just put off people wanting to drive as it already is the cbt covers everything a new driver needs If you want to improve safety increase the dam age limit and stop these wannabe boy racing teens it’s them types of people that crash or cause crashes they ain’t mature enough to be around a bike seriously it’s a disgrace a theory to drive a 50cc Upto a 125cc increase the dam age of a person and stop these young teens if you want safety

    • Replies to Craig>

      Comment by Olivia (DVSA) posted on

      Hi Craig,

      Thank you for your comments. Riding a moped or scooter is often the only means of independent transport available to young people; we do not intend to increase the minimum age for riding. We want more young people to have the opportunity to ride - we do want them to stay safe though. If more people took additional training to go on and take their test and get a full licence the number of young riders who are injured on our roads would reduce.


      • Replies to Olivia (DVSA)>

        Comment by Craig posted on

        But seriously a theory and hazard before a cbt even if they want to stay on a 125 that’s just beyond you might aswell do the full test trust me all your going to do is take people off the road if they now have to take both these tests you clearly haven’t thought none of this through I know my basic safety I’ve driven for a good number of years on a cbt with no issues how ever theory and hazzard was always a issue not due to what it was but the way it’s worded like I said it’s just picking on the tidy drivers and it’s bang out of order

  33. Comment by Mike Abbott posted on

    As someone who was asked to participate in the consultation, I am heartened that it wasn't the PR exerise that I feared, and looks a good practical way forward. I hope as an ACU Coach, that a proper consistent theory on actually controlling a motorcycle is developed, as this is the major cause of big bike accidents. Mike Abbott, British Superbike School

  34. Comment by Martin A posted on

    There is nothing in the document that I can disagree with. All good common sense. However, as someone who works closely with young people, thought needs to be taken on costs to the consumer. Many of the young riders are people who would rather be taking driving lessons and buying a car, but simply can't afford it. I know it's not the DVSA's brief to subsidise training, but can we all think about ways of making motorcycling affordable for people, on often very low incomes, using their bikes to access college and/or jobs for the first time.
    I fear we may push some to ride illegally.