Taking your motorcycle practical test is two stage process. These stages or modules, have been described below to give you an understanding of what you can expect come test day.

Module 1

Module 1 of the motorcycle practical test takes around 20 minutes to complete. It’s tested in a safe off-road area at your local test centre. The test is based around your control of a motorcycle, and need to show that you can comfortably do the following:

  • wheel the moped or motorcycle and use the stand
  • perform a slalom and figure of eight
  • ride slowly (at about walking pace)
  • U-turn
  • cornering and controlled stop
  • cornering and the emergency stop
  • cornering and hazard avoidance.

Tip: Make things easier for yourself by using the side stand instead of the centre stand.

Pass: 5 or less minor faults (faults that are not considered to be dangerous)

Fail: 1 major fault (something that could present a danger to yourself or other road users)

Watch the DSA’s official module 1 video

If you really want to know what to expect on your module 1 test, check out Shaun Parsloe’s video. Shaun bravely filmed his module 1 test, passing first time with zero minor faults. Unfortunately he forgot to correctly set the date and time on his camera.

Module 2

Module 2 is performed on public roads and takes about 50 -60 mins to complete. Before you start the test you must show your module 1 pass certificate to the examiner. You need to use the use the same size and type of motorcycle for both tests.

The module tests your ability to ride safely on the road and includes the following:

  • general road riding
  • pulling out from behind a parked vehicle
  • hill start
  • independent riding (You’ll be asked by the examiner to ride a route following traffic signs or a series of directions. This is designed to test your decision-making)
  • an eyesight test
  • motorcycle safety questions.

Before going out on the road you will be fitted with a radio. This is a one-way communication system and is used by the examiner to give you directions.

The examiner himself will usually follow you on a motorcycle or in extreme cases in a car.

Here’s the DSA’s official video on what to expect on your module 2 test.

Dealing with nerves

Not everyone is a calm and confident about their test as Shaun Parsloe in his module 1 video. It’s only natural to be nerves about your test after all the time and money you’ve invested. Here’s a few tips to help you.

  • Get a good night’s sleep before your modules and try not to worry about them
  • Don’t eat a heavy meal or drink too much caffeine before your test
  • Arrive at the test centre in 15 minutes before your test so that aren’t rushed or waiting too long
  • Be positive – you’ve already put in all the hard work, now you just need to demonstrate it
  • Enjoy it – riding a motorcycle is fun.

What happens after the test?

The examiner will tell you whether you’ve passed or failed at the end of each module. Whatever the result you’ll be given valuable feedback on your riding.

If you passed you’ll now be able to get your provisional licence changed for a full one. The examiner will send off your details to the DVLA and a new licence should be posted out to you within 4 weeks. You can ride on the road legally; you do not have to wait for your new licence to arrive.

If your examiner doesn’t pass on your details to the DVLA you’ll need to do this yourself. Full details on exchanging your test pass certificate can be found online.

What if I fail?

If you fail module 1 you must wait at least 3 working days before you can retake the test.  If you fail module 2 you must wait a minimum of 10 working days before you can retake the test.

At the end of each module you’ll be given feedback by the examiner. While waiting for your retake use this time to practice on the areas highlighted by the examiner. At the end of module 2 you can ask for your trainer to be there when the feedback is given. Either way, show your trainer your test report and follow their advice to correct your faults.

Staged or progressive access route

If you wish to progress from an A1 to an A2 licence or from an A2 to an A licence you will need to pass a practical test at each step. Unless you are eligible for the Direct Access route, you must have held your licence for the lower category for at least two years before you can take the practical test.