Behind the Wheel in Texas
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Texas Behind-the-Wheel Training
If you are a new teen driver in Texas, you must complete behind-the-wheel driver's training and supervised driving practice as components of the Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) graduated driver licensing (GDL) program.
Your behind-the-wheel driving practice will help you safely develop the skills necessary to pass the DMV driving test and obtain your first driver's license. You'll be able to take on the responsibilities required of a new, younger driver, and you'll be able to maneuver your vehicle in a variety of road, traffic, and environmental conditions.
On this page you'll find information about the Texas DPS behind-the-wheel requirements and the next steps towards your new driver's license.
If you're younger than 18 years old, you'll need to complete a total of 44 hours of behind-the-wheel training, including:
- 7 hours of behind-the-wheel driver's training with your driving instructor.
- 7 hours of in-car observation as part of your driver's training.
- 30 hours of supervised practice with a licensed adult.
You'll be able to begin your driver's training after you:
- Have completed the classroom portion of your Driver's Ed course.
- Apply for your learner's permit.
- Are at least 15 years old.
For more information about completing driver's education and applying for your learner's permit, please visit the following pages:
Behind-the-wheel driver's training is a component of your Texas Driver's Ed course and can be completed through:
- Professional driver's training schools.
- Parent-taught driver's education (PTDE) programs.
- Public schools.
Your course must include at least:
- 7 hours of behind-the-wheel practice.
- 7 hours of observation.
You will receive a certificate of completion after you complete each component of your Driver's Ed/behind-the-wheel program.
For more information about each option for completing Driver's Ed/driver's training:
- Contact your school.
- Visit the TX DPS website for information about Parent-Taught Driver’s Ed.
- Search the complete list of professional driver’s training schools.
Completing your driver's training component will allow you to directly apply the defensive driving skills and safe driving techniques you'll have learned about during the classroom portion of your driver's education program.
Before you can advance from your learner's permit to your provisional driver's license, you'll also need to practice driving with a licensed adult who is at least 21 years old.
You must complete an additional 30 hours of supervised driving with at least 10 hours completed at night.
Your supervised driving practice will help you build upon the driving experience you'll have gained during driver's training. The more supervised driving experience you get, the better prepared you'll be to pass your driving test and start driving by yourself.
You'll be able to take your Texas driving test and obtain your provisional driver's license after you:
- Complete your behind-the-wheel requirements.
- Have held your learner's permit for at least 6 months.
For more information about any additional requirements, documents, forms, and fees you'll need to submit to the Texas DPS for your first driver's license, please visit our Applying for a New License (Teen Drivers) in Texas page.
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