Does our scheduling process mystify you? Sometimes frustrate you? There actually is a method to our madness that I would like to address in this article. This is a long article, but if you really want to understand why we schedule the way we do, this should help clarify things for you!
DrivingMBA has an extremely unique approach to driver training that is science based, meaning we have structured and developed our programs based on the latest information and science on effective driver training. It is a process that is focused on the student. We provide students with instruction in intervals so we are not inundating them with information that they couldn’t possibly retain all at once. Our intention is to introduce information and skills to them when they are actually ready for it, hence our scheduling process. This methodology also allows them the opportunity to practice what they are learning and to develop competency along the way. In the February newsletter I wrote about the levels of competency. If you missed the article you can click here to read it. At DrivingMBA our focus is on developing competency, not passing a test and there is a BIG difference. That means we take our cues from the student. So what does this have to do with scheduling?
If your student comes to DrivingMBA with 0 to 20 hours behind the wheel, we start them in our Beginner Simulation Lab. That lab consists of four 2 hour lessons and is designed to aid a student in developing their basic skills such as hand and foot control, steering control, left and right turns, lane position, lane management and much more. Here a student really begins to understand that there actually is more to driving than getting in the car and moving off. These four lab lessons should be completed within no more than a 4 to 5 week span as we do not recommend leaving large gaps of time in between these lessons.
Students are working on developing their basic skill set and they need to complete the Beginner Lab before they begin their on-road training where they transfer what they’ve learned to the real world.
Classroom – We don’t spend a lot of time in the classroom with our students because our method is a kinesthetic, hands on approach. We do our best to make our classroom interactive, primarily by engaging students in answering questions and conducting some demonstrations. If a student is signed up for our DRIVE Cert Test Package, that is the ONLY package where we can test a student for both their permit and their license. There are requirements that are imposed by the MVD that must be fulfilled in order for us to issue the waivers. We offer four classes:
- The Responsibilities of Driving Class – this class is designed to help students understand the consequences of poor decision making behind the wheel. It is recommended that this class is scheduled within the first month or two of registration.
- The Rules of the Road Permit Class is where we actually administer the written test as a practice or as the actual test depending on the package purchased. This class along with the Responsibilities class, the Parent Class AND the 4 beginner simulation labs must be completed before a student receives their 1st waiver for the permit.
- The Parent Class is for parents, guardians or anyone that will be practicing with their student. Again, we recommend that this class get done early in the process as it helps tremendously with the coaching and practice that must be done. If there are multiple members of a family that want to attend, they are welcome. If a mom and dad can’t make the same class they can schedule into different classes.
- Orientation to Defensive Driving Classroom – This class is the precursor to the Defensive Driving Lab and is designed to introduce the principles of defensive driving before a student experiences them in the simulation lab. This class is usually scheduled after the 1st or 2nd on-road lesson and must be completed before starting the defensive driving lab.
We offer packages with different increments of driving, 6, 8, 10 or more hours of on-road instruction. These lessons are done in 2 hour increments which include an intake before the lesson and a debrief after the lesson. In order for us to issue a waiver to waive the test at the MVD a student has to complete 10 or more hours on the road that includes their evaluation lesson. These get scheduled over the time a student is required to hold their permit. If a student is under the age of 18 they MUST hold their permit for a minimum of 6 months from the date it is issued to them. Typically we will recommend 4 to 6 weeks between each lesson and approximately 20-25 hours of practice in between. We recommend this amount of practice because we want to be able to introduce a new level of skill each time. If a student doesn’t do the practice in-between lessons, we lose the ability to introduce higher level skill sets and more complex driving.
IF a student is really struggling or a parent just can’t get their student to do the practice driving, then we recommend that you “front-load” lessons. That means we will schedule multiple lessons within weeks so that we can get a student comfortable and safe for parents to do practice driving with them.
We don’t introduce this to a student until their basic skills are in good shape. They must be comfortable on the freeway and have a minimum of 30 hours on the road. This lab consists of three 2 hour lessons and is designed to introduce a student to a multitude of situations that we simply cannot replicate behind the wheel of a car. For example, we put students in head on collision situations at 65 miles an hour, you cannot duplicate that experience on a closed course and certainly not on the road. DrivingMBA on-road instructors are trained to identify when students are “defensive driving” ready and that signals our administrators to begin scheduling students into the program.
We do our very best to stay on top of scheduling. We HIGHLY recommend that in the first scheduling call, particularly for a full package, that all Beginner Simulation labs and classes, with the exception of the Defensive Driving Orientation are scheduled. As you can see, there are many appointments. For our DRIVE Cert package there are a total of 17 appointments that need to be made over time. We want to assist you in getting your appointments scheduled at the appropriate time. We do experience “heavy volume” times such as summer when students are out of school and our appointments fill up.
We do scheduling follow-up where schedulers call to find out how students are doing and if they are ready to schedule more lessons. However, if you need to schedule, please don’t wait for us to call you. We also maintain a cancellation list so when appointments are canceled we contact you to see if you want that appointment. There is no pressure to take these appointments we are just working to give you options and filling our instructors days.
Hopefully, this overview helps you understand the method to our madness and why we do what we do. It TRULY is in the very best interest of your student and we ask that you work with us, be patient with us and more importantly with your student. This is a life skill that they will use for the rest of their life. These are also life-saving skills, hence our desire to introduce concepts and skills at the appropriate time so that students get the most they can from their experience with DrivingMBA.