The Theory Test Explained…
Armed with a form DL196 from the CBT, you can now move on to the theory test. This involves answering a set multiple choice questions that aim to test your knowledge of road rules, motorbike handling and the basics of road safety, as well as your road attitude, along with a hazard perception test.
If you’ve already gained your driving licence then you’ll remember doing the car theory test, it works in a similar format however the questions are motorcycle-focused.
Not many motorcyclists go on to take their theory straight away as it’s not a necessity to have after passing your CBT. However if you want to progress onto bigger, more powerful bikes then you will have to gain your full licence; this includes passing your theory test to do so.
How much is the motorcycle theory test?
Motorcycle theory test costs just £23 to complete which involves both parts of the test, and you can book into your local examination centre, which you can find a list here. You will need to allow for about an hour to complete the whole test and you will receive your results as soon as you’ve finished.
How to pass a motorbike theory test
Our guide below will show you the step-by-step processes of taking your motorbike theory test, including how the multiple choice test works and an explanation of the hazard perception test. We also explain the things that you’ll need to take along with you to your theory test like your driving licence (you cannot take your theory without applying for your provisional licence), and other documentation.
Don’t forget, before you head out to take your test that there are a lot of useful resources online including practice tests, videos and other important information. Reading and revising this information will really benefit you!
How the multiple choice test works
You’ll be taking both the multiple choice test and hazard perception test on the same day, so you’ll need to spend an equal amount of time practising and understanding both parts.
The first part of the test is made up for 50 multiple choice questions – you will need to get at least 43 correct in 57 minutes in order to pass this component.
You do have the options to ‘flag’ any questions you may want to review at the end of your test (if you still have time left) if you are unsure on the answer.
You will then be given a 3 minute break before the hazard perception test begins.
The DVSA are unable to tell you what questions you answered incorrect, only the categories they are related to.
Preparing for the multiple choice test
There are a lot of resources out there that will help you revise for your theory test with everything from books to online quizzes and games. It’s all good practice for when you take the test for real!
For the multiple choice part of the test, it’s recommended to revise on key aspects such as The Highway Code, traffic signs, road markings and everyday driving scenarios. There is a specific section dedicate to rules for motorcyclists which is important for you to read and understand.
Using the official DVSA revision questions on your computer is the best way to practice of the real test as they will help you understand the questions and answers you will be facing.
Mock exams are a great way of monitoring your progress leading up to you theory to ensure your achieving a consistent pass rate beforehand. You can flag any questions you don’t understand and review them at the end of the test.
You can also download apps to help you revise for your theory test then you can do them wherever you are.
Here are some examples of useful and informative apps you can download:
- The Official DVSA Theory Test, £4.99
- AA Theory Test, Free
- Motorcycle Theory Test UK & The Highway Code, £2.29
- UK Motorcycle Theory Test, Free
Why not try our very own theory mock test and see how well you know your stuff!
How the hazard perception test works
Before the hazard perception part begins, you’ll be shown a short video on how the test works. You will then be shown 14 short clips on a computer screen.
There will be no sound to accompany the clips, and each one will last approximately a minute.
The clips will show everyday road scenes that will contain at least one ‘developing hazard’ – one clip will feature 2 ‘developing hazards’.
Types of hazards you’re looking for:
- Pedestrians or cyclists crossing the roads
- Vehicles emerging from side roads, parking spaces or driveways
- Large vehicles moving over to your side of the road
- Meeting oncoming vehicles on narrow roads or where other obstruction or slow moving vehicles make the road narrow
- Where animals may wander onto the road
The speed that you click your mouse will determine how many marks you will score after spotting a potential hazard.
A red flag will appear at the bottom of the screen – one for each click you make to let you know your clicks have been registered. These will disappear at the end of each scene.
You can score up to 5 marks for each hazard you spot, the earlier you spot them the higher mark you will receive, however continuously clicking on the screen will score you zero.
The pass mark for motorcycles is 44 out of 75.
How to prepare for the hazard perception test
There is a lot of material online to help with your hazard perception test, especially videos. They are really useful in showing you different scenarios which you could encounter on your test.
Check out this short video on how the hazard perception test works
Remember not to be frightened to click the mouse whenever you see a potential hazard involving another road user – anything that may make the driver slow down, change direction or position.
Watch the hazard and if it develops then click so you can score within the time frame and gain your necessary marks to pass.
Not all hazard will materialize therefore you will not receive a mark for spotting them, for example; a cyclist in the developing hazard stops at the side of the road, the potential hazard cannot materialise.
Booking your theory test
Booking your theory test can be done in a few easy steps online. You’ll need to visit the official Government website, or alternatively you can call 0300 200 1122 to book your theory test today.
There are hundreds of test centres across the country so you’ll be able to book in at a centre that is best for you.
The test is available in other languages including Albanian, Hindi, Spanish, Welsh and many more. You will listen to the test through a headset being read in your required language.
What you’ll need to take:
- Provisional driving licence
- CBT certificate
- Booking confirmation
All your personal belongings will be placed in a locker for the duration of the test and talking or disrupting any other candidates is forbidden.
You must pass this section of the test to move on to your practical test.
When you pass your theory test, you must keep your certificate in a safe place as you’ll need this when booking your practical test.
The theory certificate is valid for 2 years, and you’ll need to renew your theory if you do not take a practical test in that time.
Even if you’ve already got a full car licence, you must still take the motorcycle theory test before taking the motorcycle practical test.
If you need to cancel your theory test then you will need to give your test centre at least three clear working days’ notice, otherwise you will lose your test fee.