Driving Exams in Virginia

Virginia drivers test requirements must be addressed when you apply for a new license. Drivers may have to pass a written drivers test, a road skills test, a vision screening, or all three. The requirements for driving tests may vary, depending on your age and the license you seek. However, you must fulfill all mandated driving exams in VA in order to be legally licensed to drive. To find out more about these drivers license test procedures, refer to the sections below.

DMV Written Drivers Exam in Virginia

The written drivers exam is also called the knowledge exam. This driving exam comes in two parts. The first part covers traffic signs. You must answer all 10 traffic questions in the first section correctly, before you can advance to the next portion. The second portion of the driver license exam covers roadway laws, driving techniques and more. All of the information needed to take this written test can be found in the Virginia Driver’s Manual. There are also sample driving exams online to help you prepare for the exam.

In order to pass this drivers license exam, you must score an 80 percent or more on the second section. The exam is either administered on a computer at one of the DMV centers or in a classroom at a nearby high school. If you require an oral driving exam, visit your nearest DMV and request one. Oral exams can be administered in all DMV centers.

If you pass this drivers test, but do not obtain your license or permit within six months of the exam’s completion, you will have to retake the test. If you fail the test, then the route to retaking the DMV driver test varies, according to your age. If you are under 18, you must wait 15 days before retaking the written drivers test. If you are 18 or above, you can retake the exam within that 15-day timeframe, but you must pay a fee. If you fail this DMV drivers test three times, then you will be required to complete a portion of a drivers training program that is approved by the state of Virginia. Once you do this, bring the Driver Education Certificate that you receive to a DMV center. Note that in order to retake the exam, you must have completed the drivers ed test after you failed the two-part exam for the third time. You cannot use a certificate that you were given before the third failure.

During these written drivers tests you may not do any of the following:

  • Have anyone assist you on the exam
  • Use your cell phone
  • Try to get answers from an outside source

Learn more about the written drivers test in Virginia by downloading our free, informative guide.

Road Skills Driving Test in Virginia

In the case that you don’t already have a Virginia drivers license, you will have to take a driving test to obtain one. This driving exam is called the road skills test. You must supply your own car to use during this DMV exam. Note that the vehicle used must have a safety inspection sticker that is valid, license plates, safety belts, horns, lights, functioning brakes, as well as meet other requirements.

The driving test can be taken at any DMV in Virginia, except the Fair Oaks Mall and Arlington DMVs. You must schedule your drivers road test by calling the DMV or going to a DMV customer service center. Note that these appointments cannot be made online.

You will be given your driving exam by a DMV representative. During the test, only you and the exam administrator will be allowed in the car. If you are younger than 18, you will take the driving test as part of your drivers education course. When taking this exam, it is recommended that you wear sneakers or flat shoes, as high-heels, sandals or other shoes can be distracting or problematic when taking this driver exam.

In the case that you fail the road test drivers exam, you must wait two days before taking the test again. If you fail this DMV drivers test three times, you will have to take the driving portion of a drivers training course that is approved by the state of Virginia. Once you have done that, bring in the certificate of completion to the DMV. Note that the date on the certificate must be later than your third failed driving exam. Any courses completed before the third failure will not be accepted. Download our comprehensive guide to read more about the Virginia DMV road test.

Vision Drivers Exam in Virginia

During the drivers license exam process, you may also be required to take a vision screening. This drivers exam will be administered at the DMV. You will be asked to look into the given machine and read out numbers and/or letters. This drivers test screening is designed to determine whether your eyesight meets Virginia’s requirements for drivers. In the case that you fail the visual drivers exam, you may go see an eye doctor and obtain corrective eyewear. If you need these corrective lenses to pass the exam, it will be noted on your license, and you will be required to wear them when you drive.

You can get this designation removed later if you have LASIK eye surgery or other corrective surgeries. In order to do this, go into a DMV center and apply for a replacement license. If you pass the visual drivers license exam without your corrective lenses, the designation will be removed from your license. You can also do this by mail. To remove the designation this way, send in your Driver’s License and Identification Card Application, a Vision Screening Report that was signed by your ophthalmologist or an optometrist no more than three months ago, along with your payment. Note that the report must say that you meet the drivers test for vision requirements set by the state of Virginia without wearing your corrective lenses. Once you meet these DMV test vision requests, you will receive a new license in the mail that does not contain the vision designation.